How 50 Words Can Improve Your Next 500 Blog Posts

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50 words. That’s all it takes to present a complete picture of your blog post — from topic to deadline — to a potential publisher or your editor. Those 50 words will help you organize and focus your thoughts. They’ll make sure that you’re writing for the correct audience on an appropriate topic with strong sources.

Yes, just 50 words written in the form of a “budget line” and gathered in a document called an “editorial budget” — both terms and templates are borrowed from the journalism world — will help you be a better, faster, more organized content marketer. And that’s true whether you’re the author or the editor.

How does this work in real life? In a recent live Raven Marketing Flight School presentation on this topic, we covered the definitions, components and ways to organize and problems to anticipate related to implementing the editorial budget system.

You can check out the slides of my presentation now, but I strongly suggest that you watch the recorded version of the class below. It offers a great deal of context and step-by-step help:

Tools that can help

Content Manager

Every Campaign that you begin managing in Raven can carry its own editorial budget file in the Content Manager. Every person that you have granted access to that Campaign and the Content Marketing can view, add to, delete or otherwise edit your editorial budget. Individual authors’ personal budgets or idea files can be stored in the Content Manager, too.

(Pro tip: Name your editorial budget with the No. 1 — for example, “1: Raven’s Blog Editorial Budget” — so it’s easy to find when you sort documents in the Content Manager by title.)

Google Forms

In the live presentation, I demonstrated step by step how easy it is to create and use a Google Form to collect budget lines, especially from freelancers or guest authors. The biggest benefit is that you can set things up to dump directly into a Google Spreadsheet, which an editor can sort and arrange later without messing up the original submission.

TextEdit or any plain-text editing program

I didn’t mention this in the live presentation, so consider it a bonus. For some reason, writing budget lines is easiest for me when every line looks the same. The same size. The same font. The same emphasis (which is to say, none). That way, each component of the budget line is and look as important as all of the others, and I’m less likely to skip one. I use TextEdit and change the settings to keep everything consistent.

More content marketing resources

Essential Content Marketing Templates

15 Free Tools for Instant Content Ideas (and 2 Paid Ones)

6 Content Marketing Lessons from Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Join our next session

We call it Marketing Flight School. Every other Thursday morning (except for busy holiday weeks, of course!) a Raven expert teaches a new training class focused on making you a smarter marketer.

  • Next up: How To Write Metadata That People Will Click and Google Will Like
  • What you’ll learn: Hate writing meta descriptions for your website? Tempted to duplicate them and save a little time? STOP! In this class, we’ll use a recent clarification from Google about meta descriptions as a jumping off point to talk about best practices, including keywords, length, “clickability” and more.
  • When: Thursday, January 9, 2014, at 11 a.m. CST Sign up here. Can’t attend? Sign up anyway and we’ll email you a recording afterwards.

Previous Marketing Flight School sessions

Missed a session? Catch up on all our previous Marketing Flight Schools with our YouTube playlist It’s constantly being updated so you don’t have to miss a thing!

Photo Credit: *BGP* via Compfight cc

Arienne Holland

Arienne has spent 20 years in communications, ranging from graphic design to journalism to PR to marketing and formerly Raven's Director of Marketing and Education.

Arienne has spent 20 years in communications, ranging from graphic design to journalism to PR to marketing and formerly Raven's Director of Marketing and Education.