Producing more content with fewer resources is, unfortunately, a common problem for today’s marketer. In a recent survey fielded with Digiday, we found that 82% of marketers have somewhat fewer resources than necessary to meet the demands of creative asset production.
Meanwhile, 88% of marketers said that demands for creative assets have increased at least somewhat within the past year.
“Nowadays there is such a need for content. There’s always a need for more and more and more.”Kim Cortese, Head of Production at digital agency Huge, as part of the Hightail/Digiday survey.
If you, like a majority of marketers, are being squeezed for time and budget, here is some advice to help get the job done:
Have a short list of free resources
There is no shortage of low-cost resources available online to leverage for developing your creative assets, especially if you lack the budgets to produce custom assets. But if your budget is $0, hard to come by or your job description includes the word “scrappy,” we’ve curated a short list (in no particular order) of free resources for you to add to your content production toolbox:
1. Stock photos: Unsplash
It’s well known how important visual assets are to content. Unsplash hosts over 1 million beautiful, high-resolution stock photos sourced from their community, and available for use for free.
2. Stock video: Pexels
If you need a short video clip to help tell your story, Pexels hosts searchable stock videos for free. Like Unsplash, Pexels sources content from their community, and makes the videos available for download in multiple formats, without signing up.
3. Stock audio: Free Music Archive
Need a tune for your content? Use Free Music Archive to stream and download free tracks based on the sound you are looking for. Be sure to apply the Creative Commons and usage filters when you are searching for songs, and always double check the licensing terms for your song selection before downloading since songs at the very minimum require attribution.
4. Icons: iconmonstr
To build visual assets such as presentations, eBooks and infographics, you actually need visual assets. Iconmonstr is a free site with over 4,000 searchable icons available for download and use without requiring attribution.
5. Presentation templates: Slidesgo
Whether you’re preparing for your big presentation or sprucing up your pitch deck, the last thing you want to worry about is the design of your content. But the design is also a very important reflection of you (the presenter) and what you are trying to communicate. If you’re tired of repurposing the designs from previous slides or dated assets, turn to Slidesgo for inspiration (and templates!) Just be sure to leave the attribution to Slidesgo on the last slide of the presentation.
6. Basic video editing: YouTube Studio
Short on video expertise? Or maybe you don’t want to bother your already busy video production team with a simple webinar recording edit. If you’re planning to upload your video content to YouTube anyway, you can make easy edits to your video–such as trimming content, adding blurs, including a call to action or even adding a free music track using YouTube Studio.
7. Surveys: Google Forms
Collecting customer quotes can help support marketing statements and decisions. One easy way to yield more quotes without chasing down customers to schedule an interview is to field a survey. Google forms let you quickly build simple custom surveys, with a link that you can send out to your target audience, and an easy way to view (or export) the results.
Note: Before downloading from any of these great sites, be sure to familiarize yourself with their terms & conditions.
Change the way you work
Purpose-built technology solutions can help your team automate processes and complete daily tasks faster. Find the right software for your creative process, and you’re setting your extended team (including clients, agencies or stakeholders) up for productivity success.
For example, by streamlining the way that your team reviews creative content and collects feedback, reviewers can save precious time typically spent outlining details over email, and creative teams have clear guidance on changes requested. Hightail’s creative collaboration features helped make it easier, and faster, for teams like CRE8IVE, an Australian based creative agency, to collect feedback on creative files.
“We saved ourselves a lot of time this year. One of our client services managers managed the whole process alone and it worked famously. We spent more than double the amount of time managing the project last year, so Hightail made us 150% more efficient,” said Alberto Florez, Creative Partner at CRE8IVE.
Onboarding a new technology solution may sound daunting, but don’t let that get in the way of a new process that will save you precious time at the end of the day, week, month and year.