If your nonprofit has had a content marketing strategy in place for some time, odds are, you have more content than you realize. While you probably pay attention to your most recent blog posts and website analytics, you may have lost sight of your older content.
That's precisely why it's time for a content audit.
Why Your Nonprofit Needs an Annual Content Audit
While creating new content regularly is good for your marketing and SEO efforts, it can lead you to lose track of how it's all doing after it's been published. A content audit takes a close look at all of the content on your website, blog, and other places that may slip your mind, like landing pages or donation pages.
By reviewing all your content on an annual basis, you ensure a consistent brand experience for your website visitors. It also provides an opportunity to clean up, update or remove anything that isn't working or is out of date.
Additionally, a content audit provides insight into what worked and what was successful so you can focus more of your efforts on creating that kind of content. It also highlights gaps in your content that can fuel your content marketing strategy in the future.
What To Look For In A Content Audit
While reviewing your content, there are a few specific things you should look for. From branding to SEO, there are several reasons to update or remove content that is no longer benefiting your organization or putting your best foot forward.
As you review the content on your website, look at the analytics behind it to see how it performs. For example, even older blog posts may still generate regular traffic. That's what's known as evergreen content. However, posts that were created to relate to specific, timely events may no longer be relevant or of interest to your website visitors. Looking at stats like Time on Page and Bounce Rate can give you a good idea of what's engaging and what's not.
Brand and Brand Voice
Even if you've put in the work to create a strong brand identity, over time, your brand evolves. Reviewing content and pages to ensure they still align with your brand is essential to creating a seamless user experience. Additionally, reviewing content for a consistent brand voice is also important. While, with a brand identity, the goal is to present the organization as a unified whole, individual pieces of content are often created by different authors, which can impact the consistency of the brand voice.
In the same vein as brand voice, a personalized marketing strategy uses personas to identify and segment the target audience. As you are auditing your content, question whether the content speaks to your most up-to-date marketing personas. If not, it may be time for a tweak or even a complete rewrite.
Just as your brand voice can evolve with time, so do your nonprofit's goals. Your mission and vision likely remain the same, but your goals may be based on annual, quarterly, or monthly planning. Your content must reflect and support your goals. If you come across content that doesn't help you achieve your current goals or was created with past goals in mind, it's time to start fresh.
As you're auditing your content, make a note of content that is performing well. Try to determine what it is about this content specifically that's made it so successful. You may need to dig into SEO keywords and page analytics to figure it out. Then, ask yourself how could this content be expanded upon? Could this performance be duplicated with content on a slightly different topic or angle?
Also, seek to identify gaps in content. These content gaps are opportunities for brainstorming new ideas. For example, if your nonprofit seeks to minimize food waste and you have content on storing produce, perhaps you could expand your content to include recipes for using stems and scraps of vegetables or how to select fresher produce when grocery shopping.
You can also subtly repurpose content on different channels, such as using social media to drill down on a single point made in a longer blog post.
After the Content Audit: Next Steps
Once you've completed the content audit, it's time to act on what you've uncovered. Depending on what you've found, you may need to:
Improve content by rebranding it, correcting errors, or directing it to a new marketing persona
Expand content for longer pieces such as blogs, ebooks, or whitepapers
Reformat content for new uses such as social media or email newsletters
Remove content that is no longer relevant and can't be improved, expanded, or reformatted
A content audit can highlight both the good and the bad copy lurking on our websites. Often, rather than getting rid of it altogether, we seek to find a way to make it better or change it to make it more effective.
Often, hidden gems are found, such as blog posts that are sleeper success stories, garnering more views over time. These pieces resonate with your audience and outperform your expectations. With some brainstorming and strategizing, these hidden gems can often drive new content initiatives. The benefit is that these initiatives are more likely to succeed because they are based on proven value to your audience.
Expand Your Content
A content audit is an excellent time to review your content and seek opportunities for expanding it into other formats. Often turning text into a visual representation as an infographic or video can be very effective. If not more so than the original version.
Look at your content that is performing well and determine whether it is the format that is successful or the message. You'll often see that the message is the key, so leverage that message into other formats!
For example, text-based testimonials can be effective. But using photos of the individual and their experience to create testimonial videos could make that message resonate even more.
Reusing messages that garner high traffic across as many formats and channels as possible will help you gain success and visibility in the other channels as well.
As you can see, a content audit helps your nonprofit present itself in a consistent and focused way. It can also uncover a wealth of new content ideas. By performing a content audit on an annual basis, you'll keep your website clean and have a regular influx of ideas to fuel your content marketing strategy.