Not that long ago, businesses that produced content as part of their communication strategy had a relatively straightforward job. They might have a writer or two, an editor, and a limited selection of channels where they published their content. Today, by contrast, in a world that’s becoming increasingly digital, brands are finding it a lot easier to produce, publish, and promote tons of content. Not only that, they’re pushing all that content out through an ever-expanding array of distribution channels.

It’s this humongous task that often leads to challenges. In fact, what it often results in is content chaos. That chaos can easily undermine all the effort your organization has put into reaping the benefits of content. How? By leading to inefficiencies and inaccuracies.

Where chaos creeps in

More people are creating, editing, and publishing than ever before. A global brand might have hundreds or thousands of authors creating content, most of whom probably aren’t professional writers.

Unfortunately, as the number of content creators in your organization multiplies, the consistency and quality of your company’s content usually suffers. It becomes much harder to ensure accurate spelling and grammar, the correct use of terminology, and the right tone of voice for your brand. All the more so if you’re translating your content for global audiences.

And guess what. Problems like these just can’t be solved by hiring more editors.

To manage the huge variety of content formats and distribution channels your enterprise targets, you need a well-documented content strategy. Why? Well, just imagine that you’re producing blogs, white papers, tweets, podcasts, webinars, product guides, and advertising materials, among other content. Not only that, you’re housing it in knowledge bases, customer service databases, self-service support sites, tech documentation centers, and marketing hubs. Plus, you’re publishing it on websites, social media platforms, GitHub repositories, and more.

If you’re not keeping track of what needs to be published where and when, and don’t have a calendar for future publications, your content is at risk. Chaos will inevitably sneak in, creating fragmentation, duplication, quality and consistency issues, and buyer confusion. And that can cost your business a fortune.

Paying the price for content chaos

Content chaos is expensive. Inefficient content creation processes put pressure on valuable resources. If your editing, review, and approval processes are burdensome and long, then delays in getting the content to market will erode its value.

Not only that, if content gets passed among too many people, it can get lost, stuck in silos, or end up being duplicated, which wastes time and effort. Without robust strategies for translating content accurately and on-brand, those costs will skyrocket too.

While these things all add up, the biggest cost is how it affects your customers. Today’s consumers expect high-quality, valuable, interesting content, delivered to them when and where they need it. Content is an essential part of the customer journey. It’s critical for building trust and brand recognition, and establishing loyalty. If you’re not delivering great content, your customers might go elsewhere.

Content chaos creates confusing, fragmented, and inconsistent customer experiences. Content that’s off-strategy, off-brand, undiscoverable, or irrelevant will damage your business and hand your competitors an easy advantage. That’s a cost your organization can’t afford to bear.

Time to rethink how you govern your content

Successfully creating, publishing, and managing great content is a boon for any business. But content chaos can undermine that, so you need to tackle it head on. Consider changing how you think about content governance. Active Content Governance — a systematic approach to managing your content strategy — has emerged as a discipline in response to the chaos created by huge demand and increasing digitization. It may be the solution your business needs.

To learn more about eliminating chaotic content and implementing Active Content Governance, download the Acrolinx Active Content Governance Playbook here.