How Well Do You Know Your Content?
If you had asked any advertising agency in the 1960s how they circulated information to their target audiences, their answer would have most likely been print or television. Today’s channel mix has built upon traditional methods and expanded into digital content-marketing tactics and a myriad of digital channels.

Modern content marketing is effective, costing 62% less than traditional marketing, and drives approximately three times as many leads. However, with all these different methods of communication, it can be easy to lose track of what has been created, where it lives and how to get the most out of each content asset. This has increased the need for comprehensive content governance and ongoing management. According to GatherContent, content governance systems can range from being exhaustingly detailed to bare bones. However, all systems can do the following:

  1. Help avoid repetitive efforts
  2. Ensure expired or outdated materials are retired from the public eye
  3. Aid in creating cohesive cross-channel communications

With all these different methods of communication, it can be easy to lose track of what has been created, where it lives and how to get the most out of each content asset.

Three Ways to Govern Content
1. Help avoid repetitive efforts: For every brand, there are multiple people and stakeholders who have a vested interest in its success. This often means the need to create a frequent cadence of new content to help reach goals. In doing so, it can be easy to reinvent the wheel several times over. Good content governance helps to:

  • Identify identical or similar assets within the brand’s ecosystem
  • Find assets that can be retooled and reused to reach current goals
  • Reuse medical and regulatory-approved assets to avoid additional rounds of review

In an environment where time is truly money, keeping a pulse on what has been done, and maximizing the potential of existing assets becomes imperative.

2. Ensure expired or outdated materials are retired: In a highly regulated industry like pharma, tracking changes or expirations on content as mandated by review teams is a necessity. In order to avoid the dreaded FDA warning letter, all content should be tagged with parameters such as:

  • An asset’s location within the larger brand ecosystem
  • What the purpose of the content is and what it is trying to achieve
  • Important elements within the content (e.g., does it contain the ISI or brand logo?)

This allows for the quick identification of where an asset should be removed or adjusted, and identifies the gap the piece of content is leaving within the larger messaging ecosystem.

3. Aid in creating cohesive cross-channel communications: Good content does not live in a silo; instead, it should be used across multiple channels to create a story for the target audience, amplifying the user experience and content impact. Often, a line of text or an image will be used across channels like website, email, print and display media.

Good content governance allows for brands to ensure contradictory statements or visuals do not exist within the ecosystem, creating confusion or lessening the power of the message. Instead, the messaging can be coordinated effectively across channels to ensure the right flow for each user segment along their journey, avoiding inconsistent or disjointed experiences.

Implications for Pharma
Content governance is important for any brand in digital marketing, but pharma brands run greater risks when they do not make governance a priority, as they can inadvertently be noncompliant if old or inconsistent messaging is still present in their wide-ranging portfolio. For pharma, consistency of messaging is especially important, and the investment in a good content governance process is well worth it.

Pharma brands run greater risks when they do not make governance a priority, as they can inadvertently be noncompliant if old or inconsistent messaging is still present in their wide-ranging portfolio.

Content creation is also more complex for pharma due to the regulatory process. Yet, often times, pharma marketers forget that their current content is made up of valuable assets that can — in many cases — be repurposed or transformed more efficiently than creating new content.

Pharma brands can see benefits in leveraging their digital content strategy team for more than content development; the team can also be enlisted to coordinate a governance process that manages content across their entire network of agencies.

Final Thoughts
Pharma can fully leverage modern digital content marketing by creating processes around content management. Brands will find benefits from a content ROI standpoint, as well as other efficiencies and a reduction in errors. Content governance doesn’t have to be overwhelming. By focusing on these key management goals — reducing repetition, retiring assets effectively, and ensuring the right messages are seen by the right audiences, content governance can efficiently improve your content portfolio.

 

Kellyn Baysinger is a content strategist.