How to Speed Up the Editorial Workflow and Process with Transcription
Some form of content marketing is a part of the strategy for most successful businesses today. According to the Content Marketing Institute, 92% of marketers indicated that their business views content as a business asset. And it’s easy to see why! The results are worth the effort.
Defined by Social Factor (a digital marketing agency), content marketing is the technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content. The main goal of content marketing is to attract and gain a clearly defined audience with the intention of driving profitable action (aka driving more sales). One of the best ways to start content creation is to use a professional transcription as your base. With great accuracy and fast turnaround time, your team will be able to speed up the content creation process while still creating accurate and profitable pieces.
With so much output of content marketing, it’s important for teams to stay efficient and organized. How do they do that? By coming up with an editorial workflow process. While this process isn’t necessarily the most exciting part about creating content, it’s hands-down the most important part! Without establishing a streamlined editorial process flow, your projects will become messy and it could take up to 6 to 12 months to approve just one blog post.
The beauty of an editorial workflow process is that it helps to avoid issues and produce content more efficiently. Let’s learn more about this process and how transcriptions can help speed it up.
Define the Editorial Workflow Process
An editorial flow will become your go-to process for managing content ideas, outlining specific roles of people and technology, keeping track of tasks, and reviewing the overall progress of your content piece. Of course, this process can be talked about and encouraged, but having an official editorial workflow process written and set in stone before optimizing it with transcripts is crucial to the effectiveness of it. Without a written process in place, you’ll notice that the creative spirit will slowly be crushed and the passion for ideas and writing will soon be diminished.
How can you speed up your editorial process flow? Look at your process and identify all the pain points. For example, is there a step that’s taking too long? Is there a task not appropriately assigned to the right person? Take the time to address any issues you see.
Don’t have an editorial workflow process in place? Now’s the time to set one up. Here are some key steps to include:
- Content Idea/Request
- SEO Items such as keywords, page title, title tag, meta descriptions
- Identify distribution channel to where content will be distributed (website, social media, email)
- Assign writer (do you have a person in-house or freelance writer?)
- Review content for grammatical errors and spelling mistakes
- Accept content and mark the draft as final so the right one gets published and distributed
- Add images, making sure they align with the topic
- Publish content on appropriate medium
- Promote it the distribution channel you identified earlier in this process
It also isn’t enough to just write down the steps. Break it down further to include time frame and responsible party. For any business, your editorial workflow process should also include:
- All tasks it takes to complete the piece of content (writing, SEO, images, editing, etc)
- Every single person who is responsible for each task
- Time for completion of each step/stage
- Definition of when management should step in to keep the ball rolling
Now, let’s talk specifically about some of those key steps we mentioned above.
Every well-executed content piece starts with a great idea. Usually, ideas come from a swipe file (collection of proven advertising ideas), another content piece already created, or from brainstorming sessions. These sessions typically include a whiteboard and a room of the marketing manager, sales manager, some top executives, and project leads. Vague ideas are thrown out and after a successful session, there are usually a few specific ideas that the editorial manager can then turn into great marketing content pieces.
Regardless of how the idea becomes an approved topic, the editorial manager will fill out an editorial calendar to make sure the right resources are assigned to the project. What’s an editorial calendar? This calendar can be created simply in an Excel document and charts due dates, publish dates, content topic, buyer persona target, call-to-action, and delivery methods. A great calendar will also include responsible parties and should be one tool that every editorial workflow process has.
During the research phase of the editorial workflow process, the SEO specialist is honing in on the topic even more to ensure that the right points, quotes, internal links, sources, and keywords are being used. When this phase is complete, the following information should be sent to the writer:
- SEO information including keywords, meta description, title tags, page title, and a recommend URL (if posting on a website). Tools that SEO specialists will use are Google and Moz for keyword research, and an online character counter to make sure the meta description is between 120 and 158 characters.
- Recommend headlines should be listed. A great way to check to see if the headline will spark attention is to run it through a headline analyzer.
- List of articles that rank for your target keyword in addition to other articles that the writer can use for research on the topic.
- List of internal and external sites/sources that you’ll want the writer to link to.
- Specific quotes and other supporting documents depending on the nature of the content.
For example, if the piece of content is a blog post, a brief outline would be perfect for writers. If the content piece is a social media post or infographic, a creative brief would suffice.
Now onto the fun and creative stage of the editorial workflow process: writing.
Good copy will sell. In today’s digital world, there is a lot floating out there but by following these tips, you can write effective copy that will stand out:
- Stay organized and follow the editorial calendar to stay on track.
- Read great content and your writing will feel inspired. Whether it’s a book or blog post, make sure to note key sentences and words that resonate with you.
- Make sure your content is readable by avoiding lengthy paragraphs (keep them to around 5 sentences), use bullet points (can you tell that we love bullet points?!), incorporate images to break up the text, and use headers to help break up the different sections.
- Use helpful tools such as Grammarly to eliminate grammatical errors, Hemingway to make suggestions for easier readability, and Focus to help block distracting websites such as Facebook.
Read great content and your writing will feel inspired. Whether it’s a book or blog post, make sure to note key sentences and words that resonate with you.
Make sure your content is readable by avoiding lengthy paragraphs (keep them to around 5 sentences), use bullet points (can you tell that we love bullet points?!), incorporate images to break up the text, and use headers to help break up the different sections.
Use helpful tools such as Grammarly to eliminate grammatical errors, Hemingway to make suggestions for easier readability, and Focus to help block distracting websites such as Facebook.
Once the content is written, it gets passed along to the editor. In this phase of the editorial process flow, the content is analyzed for structure and mechanics. Additionally, the editor will provide the writer gracious yet constructive feedback with actionable suggestions that help to enhance the piece. Once the editor gives suggestions back to the writer, it becomes an open dialogue for questions and disagreements (if any).
This phase can last anywhere from an hour up to days or even weeks. It depends upon the content piece and how long it takes to make it “perfect”.
In this next stage, the designer would be the lead person responsible for completion. It’s important to create multimedia elements that help to supplement the article including graphics, images, and video content. It’s important that whatever visual element is used that it communicates the big picture of the topic covered in the content piece along with reflecting your brand accurately. The design element should also look good on a variety of platforms and different screen sizes. This will help to make sure that your content resonates with the audience you’re trying to attract.
The last phase in the editorial workflow process is publishing your content. Once all the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed, your content marketing piece is ready to be published anywhere on your website, in an email, and on your social media channels. From there, the editorial workflow process starts all over again with a new content idea.
Opportunities to Use Transcripts to Improve Editorial Process Flow
Using transcriptions is a great way to speed up your entire editorial process. In fact, having a transcript in-hand creates different opportunities at each step of the editorial flow to help make accurate, on-brand content. How exactly do transcriptions help with the editorial workflow process?
Is your team brainstorming too fast to take notes? No problem. Simply use the recording app on your smartphone and transcribe the audio to text. This way everyone who’s present during the meeting can stay focused on coming up with ideas as they know they will receive detailed notes later on.
Plus, having a transcription can help to save time. Compiling meeting notes and filling in the editorial calendar can quickly be done with copy and paste from the transcript.
Having audio to text transcript also can spark ideas for additional content pieces down the road. In brainstorming sessions, many ideas are thrown around with only a few making it to the approval stage. With a transcript of the brainstorming session, editors can read through it to find ideas they liked but didn’t use in previous months.
Transcripts can also speed up the research phase in the editorial workflow process, especially if you’re creating a video. With the rise of educational videos online, providing the correct credit and quotes is easier with transcripts. Plus, transcripts will become a journalists best friend as it makes pulling quotes from interviews very easy. Social media marketers can also use transcripts by pulling content for social media posts, and using quotes for testimonials online.
We mentioned that outlines can help expedite the writing process above, but transcripts can also help with creating outlines along with pulling quotes and formatting a blog post or press release. Long-form content is all the rage right now, and that type of content specifically takes a lot of time. If you’re worried about a writer’s deadline and holding up the editorial workflow process, providing transcriptions can help writers move faster through the piece.
Transcripts especially help video editors during their phase of the editorial workflow process. Included with transcripts are timestamps, which help to make video editing more streamlined and faster. For example, an editor might need to fact check a quote from an hour-long video at minute fifteen. Instead of going through the entire video to find it, they can use the timestamps on the transcripts.
Why Transcriptions to Your Editorial Workflow Process?
There are many reasons why you should transcribe audio to text, with one of them being to speed up the editorial process so you can continue to make great content as fast as possible. Partnering with a reputable online transcription company is a great way to receive accurate transcripts in a fast time frame for a great price. Rev offers different transcription services that can help improve the editorial workflow process.