A 3-Step Start to Great Results
As I sit down to write this blog post it's painfully clear that my topic should have something to do with the challenges related to producing quality content. You see, according to our editorial calendar I'm late.
Each of us here at Digett have a responsibility to contribute our blog, and I'm embarrassed to say that even though I've shouldered the lightest load from a frequency perspective, I must have the poorest performance when it comes to delivering on my commitment on time. I was to have completed this post by 5pm yesterday, and now I'm scrambling to have something to show prior to our weekly staff meeting at 9am this morning. It's not good when the founding partner doesn't follow the guidelines agreed upon by the entire team.
I can come up with a hundred excuses for my failure, all of which might have some nugget of truth within. I'm a busy guy, after all, as most of us are. Growing a company is particularly challenging work, and when combined with the commitments of family and other worthwhile outlets, it all can seem a little overwhelming. Sitting down to compose a blog post, which on the surface might seem to lack importance, and which requires more than just a little focus is, well, just hard to do.
For Digett, though, our blogging effort is key to our marketing success, which is, in turn, key to our success in sales. No sales, no revenue. And in the big picture, the rewards related to our commitment to post useful content week after week far outweigh the cost. This phenomenon is not unique to blogging, or marketing as a whole. I’d like to propose a simple solution to help with ensuring successful outcomes with any complex undertaking deemed important to your own firm's success.
Assume a Process Mentality
If something will have to be done not only this time, but many times to come, invest the effort up front to develop a process for it. It doesn't have to be perfect, and it will most certainly not be. Process is there not only to avoid reinventing the wheel, but to serve as a starting point for innovation. It's futile to expect innovation in an environment where you don't do something the same way long enough to understand the weakness of it. But try doing something two or three times following a documented process, and it quickly starts to become apparent where there's room for improvement.
Build in Some Accountability
The fact that I'm speedily typing this blog post is a testament to the power of accountability. I don't want to suffer the embarrassment of failing to deliver. No, we're not out to embarrass folks, but without some mechanism to encourage follow through of commitment, we encourage a culture where commitment means little. Post results publicly, provide recognition as well as constructive criticism where appropriate. Get your team involved in deciding what commitments are appropriate. In the end, accountability will be a key component of your success.
Have Courage to Fail
If I've said it once I've said it a hundred times. We've stubbed our toes many times over the past couple of years as we've made the transition from a "web design shop" to a full service digital marketing agency. I'm not even out to claim the title of "expert" anymore in the content marketing space, and have a healthy skepticism toward those who do. I'd rather be known as a company that's not afraid to take a chance on something new, because in this space following others is a surefire path to average results. This interactive, social world in which we live is changing too fast to rely on hard and fast rules. So in the end, we can't attach our success to "proven" tactics as much as we should a deeper than average understanding than most of the big picture, including what has worked in the past as well as what has failed, and the willingness to step outside the box.
Good luck. I know you’ll bear fruit if you try. As for me, I have to go now and post this immediately, before I fall victim to the wrath of the resident blog goddess.