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About That Burger King Tweet … and More Helpful Content Marketing Lessons

This week feels like back-to-school season. Burger King UK gets a lesson in the importance of context. Marketers get a resource for figuring out where they are – and where they need to be – on the social media maturity roadmap. And everyone can learn from an at-a-glance chart that shows just how many steps go into producing high-performing content.

Everybody (but Burger King?) knew an apology would follow this tweet

An image showing a Burger King UK tweet that reads Women belong in the kitchen.

You may have already heard about the fast-food chain’s latest social media misstep. To celebrate International Women’s Day, Burger King UK created a campaign to launch its new HER (Help Equalize Restaurants) scholarship to help women who work at Burger King pursue an academic degree in culinary arts.

That’s a worthwhile cause. But the (since deleted) tweet prompted an outcry from the public – and the company soon apologized. (Get all the details in this Adweek article: Burger King Gets Grilled for ‘Women Belong in the Kitchen’ Tweet Supporting Female Chefs.)

WHY IT MATTERS: Content marketers are encouraged to try provocative and out-of-the-box ideas. And the Burger King campaign certainly falls into that category. But before you publish, do a gut check with a few people in your target audience (who don’t work for your brand.) And when you ask for their input, don’t explain anything. Let them see the content as anyone else would. Ask for their thoughts as an open-ended question. (Specific questions with multiple choice answers could skew their reactions.)

It’s also a great reminder to match content to the delivery channel. The provocative headline arguably works as an advertisement because it catches the reader’s eye and then explains the twist (i.e., the scholarship program) on the same page. But using the phrase “Women belong in the kitchen” as a standalone tweet is a fail. Readers couldn’t easily get the context of the scholarship – and reacted with outrage.

HOW WE HEARD ABOUT IT: CMI’s Lisa Dougherty shared the Adweek article.

The #content idea was provocative but delivered with no context. That led to an apology. Could @BurgerKingUK’s idea have worked? via @Brandlovellc @CMIContent #WeeklyWrap Find out how > Share on X

How mature is your brand’s social strategy?

“…(Social) should be one of your most cost-effective channels to drive sales, enhance customer service and nurture loyalty … (Many brands) haven’t embedded a sophisticated strategy and operating model that drives business outcomes and efficiencies,” writes Matt Allison in a recent Ubiquity Lab newsletter.

Ubiquity Lab then takes readers through a four-stage roadmap for social media: walk, jog, run, and sprint. You can provide your email if you want to take a 19-question assessment to figure out where you all on the roadmap. Even if you don’t take the test, the (ungated) article How to Benchmark Your Social Media Strategy offers plenty of detail you can use to figure out what stage you’re in.

Here are the overview descriptions:

An image showing a four-stage roadmap for social media: walk, jog, run, and sprint.

The article describes what your business should be doing (and why) at each stop on the map. It also acknowledges that “sprint” may not be the goal for every enterprise.

“You may be ‘walking’ in some areas but ‘running’ in others – and that’s great, as long as you’re moving forward,” the article says.

WHY IT MATTERS: To use it successfully, social media can’t just be an add-on or supplement to your content marketing strategy. It needs to be an integral component. As you traverse this article, you’ll grasp a better understanding of how your brand’s social media compares to others in regards to maturity. More importantly, you’ll gain a better sense of what you should be doing based on how you see social media fitting into your program.

HOW WE HEARD ABOUT IT: Sarah Mitchell of Typeset saw the article in Story Lab, the newsletter of Ubiquity Lab. She first shared it on LinkedIn. Given how it took off there (600% more page views than her average post), she’s sharing it with the CMI community.

When it comes to #SocialMedia, are you walking, jogging, running, or sprinting? A handy resource from Ubiquity Lab will help you get to where you want to go, via @SarahMitchellOz @CMIContent. #WeeklyWrap Share on X

How many steps go into creating high-performing content?

The next time you need to explain how much goes into content creation or how to make it the most efficient, try this helpful visual from Andy Crestodina of Orbit Media Studios. The image (from The Entire Content Creation Process in 17 Steps and a Single Flowchart) captures each step of the content creation process, starting with the idea and ending with shipping it to the editor.

Here’s a glimpse of the first four steps that fall under concept development:

An image showing the first four steps of the content creation process starting with the idea and ending with shipping it to the editor.

Check out all the steps – including search optimization, writing the first draft, and editing and polishing stages – in the full infographic.

WHY IT MATTERS: Content creators know how much goes into their work. But following a detailed, formal process – and making sure not to miss a step – isn’t a strong suit for many of us. Spelling out the details is important to ensure we create something your audience wants – and your business needs. Plus, it’s a great way to educate all involved in or approving budgets for content marketing.

HOW WE HEARD ABOUT IT: CMI’s Kim Moutsos admired the chart in a recent newsletter from Orbit.

How many steps does #ContentCreation take? 3? 5? 10? This flowchart from @crestodina settles the question (and we explain why it matters), via @KMoutsos @CMIContent. #WeeklyWrap Share on X
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Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute