We all want to generate valuable content, but sometimes it’s hard to find the time or get into the groove. Whatever your struggle, one thing is constant: content needs to be produced. We have many clients come to us looking for guidance and help in creating different marketing materials. We may help from concept to completion or supplementing what they’ve already started or anywhere in between. One piece of advice that I’ve given just about all of my clients at one point or another is the importance of batching.
A little planning and forethought can pay huge dividends in reduced cost and overall content cohesion. When we can properly batch a project, whether it is a vlog/blog series, social media campaign, or automated email workflows, the return on investment (ROI) is exponentially greater with a streamlined process. It’s the same concept bakers use: to create three dozen cookies, a baker wouldn’t mix three separate batches of dough. The baker would triple their recipe and make one large batch of dough, streamlining their process. When we have a videographer scheduled to shoot one project, I always recommend that my clients get additional b-roll and combine any other projects into the same shoot since the videographer is already on-site and set up. To do this, pre-planning other projects is necessary. Let’s say a client is doing a four-part vlog series on a particular topic. Before we begin shooting, the entire series should be outlined, with each episode storyboarded and scripted, or at least outlined if the SME is comfortable talking off script. Once the project is planned out, our client can record all four episodes in one day. Shooting all four vlogs without having to refresh yourself on the subject matter or get back into the right mindset can make the content flow better and come out faster. Win-win!
Social media posts need to be timely, but that doesn’t mean you can’t outline a month’s worth of post topics ahead of time. Batching the creation of social media posts can go a little something like this:
- Identify a list of topics you want to cover
- Organize them to your posting schedule
- Check your selected topics for overlap to create overarching series
- Write your copy for each post
- Brainstorm on images that support your topic while you write your post’s copy
- Look for stock images or develop graphic concepts for each post
You may want to do hashtag research closer to the posting time, but if there are repeatable hashtags, you can pop those in there. Now you can schedule your posts either manually or on your social media management platform. Ta-da! You’ve just saved a bunch of time by batching your content and will have more flexibility to add time-sensitive posts to your social media lineup as they occur.
The benefits of batching extend to graphic design as well. The PetroPages team is fortunate to have fantastic Graphic Designers, and they always want as much of the total picture as possible before starting a project. When I give our designers a series of related projects, they can develop stylizing that ensures the entire series flows, allowing for image continuity and increased brand awareness. This reduces cost, time and makes for cohesive marketing materials.
It’s human nature to focus on putting out the immediate fires. But, if you only operate in that manner, that is all that you will ever do. Some extra time spent planning before diving into creating your content will yield great benefits.