Companies that blog generate 55 percent more traffic to their sites. This in turn results in more inbound leads and revenue.
That’s all fine and good, but consistently and reliably generating unique and valuable blog content takes time. Not to mention, it’s resource-intensive and there are a lot of moving pieces. For instance, there’s audience research, writing, editing, formatting and promotion.
In order to effectively manage all of these pieces and grow your blog’s audience, we encourage you to institute a systematic process.
A critical piece of your systematic process will include your content backlog.
What is a content backlog?
Your content backlog is a list of content you could eventually write for your audience.
It’s likely you’ve thought of dozens of ideas for posts over time. It’s also likely you’ve forgotten many of them along the way. A content backlog helps you address this problem.
It’s a tool that enables you to keep all of your content ideas in one place and further develop them over time.
Once you feel an idea is ready, you can take the next step and write the post.
Why is it important?
A content backlog is a nice way for you to keep track of your content ideas, but there are other reasons why it’s important, too:
It will improve the quality of your content — A content backlog is one of the first steps that goes into developing an effective content system. You can plan your topics one day, write another, then edit everything after you’ve given it some time to settle. This allows your mind to seamlessly go through each phase of the process in a flow-state, thus making you and your content more effective.
It will help you build your audience strategically— Developing a content backlog forces you to think about your audience’s interests long-term. It requires you to evaluate your ideas and think about the value they’ll provide collectively over time.
It will give your content more cohesion—A content backlog acts as a roadmap and gives your content more depth. Instead of simply whipping together ad-hoc, unrelated pieces of content, a content backlog acts as a compass and ensures each piece of content is related and complements the others.
It will help you manage your resources and timelines — If you have a content team, a content backlog is a nice way to help you manage your publication schedule. We use our content backlog in conjunction with our content calendar. The calendar provides a visual representation and makes it easier to see when content is being published, packaged and promoted.
You can learn more about how we use content calendars here.
There are many benefits that come from building and using a content backlog. First and foremost, it gives you more control over your blogging strategy, and better positions you to iterate and refine it over time.
Next, a content backlog gives you more creative flexibility. You don’t have to feel pressure to come up with great ideas on tight deadlines or feel rushed to post content that isn’t fully developed. Not to mention, you’ll have more free time to focus on your other projects as well.
Lastly, a content backlog forces you to think strategically about your audience and how you can help them long-term.
Invest the time necessary to develop your content backlog. It’s absolutely worth it.