As we have been talking about here at Content Science, a content playbook is essential for overcoming the top content challenges your organization faces and for making your content strategy a success. 

But even after you put in the hard work to create a content playbook, there is still more you can do to ensure it doesn’t just sit on the shelf.

Here are our 5 top tips for making your content playbook a winning one.

1. You might need more than one content playbook.

If you feel like you need more than one content playbook, you’re probably right—especially if you are with a larger organization. The need for more than one playbook can arise when you have different audiences for different playbooks or if you would be putting too much into one playbook if you don’t split them up. For each playbook you think you need, sketch out what each playbook would focus on, the purpose, and what kinds of plays you might need in each. And see if the need for more than one holds up.

2. Make your playbooks and plays available in a center of content excellence.

The key here is to make your content playbook easily available and accessible. Depending on your organization, this could mean you distribute the playbook as literal books or documents, through an intranet or wiki, or some combination of both. If your playbook contains templates, it can help to share unique links to those so that staff can easily pull what they need when they need it. 

3. Use playbooks in training new team members or partners / vendors.

Playbooks are a great tool for getting people on the same page quickly. Playbooks make your organization’s approach to content crystal clear and gives team members an easy-to-follow roadmap for executing content and content plays. You can incorporate your playbook into new hire orientation, cross-department training, and vendor onboarding.    

4. Refine plays and add plays as needed. Review quarterly or at a cadence that makes sense. 

A winning content playbook contains specific and consequently repeatable plays. And since content is never officially done and the landscape is always evolving, expect to have to refine these plays and add plays as needed. The plays and playbooks are living documents that you will need to review on a regular basis to make sure you have the best approaches and the most current techniques. Reviewing at least quarterly works well for many organizations.    

5. As you define plays, consider opportunities to automate.

Once you have an approach to content really mapped out and refined, and you have the rules and steps well defined, you may have something that is a candidate for being automated through technology. Natural language generation (NLG) is an example of how technology can help you automate your content plays. NLG is a type of artificial intelligence that turns voice, style, and other writing rules into algorithms that can automate creating language out of data. Even if your organization isn’t ready for something like LNG quite yet, if you are documenting your content rules in a clear content playbook, you are laying a great foundation for being able to automate your content processes in the future. 

Following these 5 tips will help ensure your content playbook is a success. To learn more about what a content playbook is read, What Is a Content Playbook? And for a deeper dive into content playbooks, including video and worksheets, check out our Content Playbook Resource Center.

The Author

Content Science partners with the world’s leading organizations to close the content gap in digital business. We bring together the complete capabilities you need to transform or scale your content approach. Through proprietary data, smart strategy, expert consulting, creative production, and one-of-a-kind products like ContentWRX and Content Science Academy, we turn insight into impact. Don’t simply compete on content. Win.

Last Updated: June 11, 2020

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