Organisations often invest time, money and effort in creating content that rarely gets used. Dan Ashton from Rimini Street knows this all too well. As the company’s former Senior Director of Product Marketing, he has spent the last seven years creating content for customer-facing teams. He deeply understands the effort that goes into content creation, and the opportunity cost and waste when content doesn’t get used.
In his new role as Senior Director of Sales Enablement, Dan is committed to developing best-in-class content governance, powered by Highspot, to ensure content is available, current, effective, and measurable.
We recently had an opportunity to sit down with Dan to discuss his content management journey and the value that governance has brought to Rimini Street. He also shared recommended best practices for enablement teams just starting to build out their content management strategy and processes.
Lack of Content Governance is a Non-Starter for Future Growth
When Dan moved into sales enablement a year ago, content governance was largely non-existent at Rimini Street. Anybody within the organisation could upload information and assets. For a rapidly expanding enterprise company, the lack of governance created chaos for the sales team – especially since they support 30 different product lines with lengthy sales cycles. He recalls, “Searching for content was something that the sales team dreaded; it was overwhelming. Sales reps used to tell us it was so difficult to find the right assets that they often gave up searching.”
The downstream impact of not addressing the governance issue carried significant implications. Dan explains, “We found that some reps weren’t finding the information they needed and others weren’t keeping current with the latest content. Instead, they relied on outdated assets saved to their local hard drives. That just wasn’t going to scale for the future.”
Content Governance is a Journey
Dan’s enablement team worked with Highspot to define a content governance framework that now provides an overarching structure for managing and controlling their content inventory. Their new governance framework articulates policies and guidelines for publishing content, maintaining and managing it within Highspot, and sharing it with customers – establishing a scalable foundation for effective content management. It helps to ensure that assets in-market are correct, current, on-message, and on-brand.
At the heart of Rimini Street’s content governance is the clear delineation of roles and responsibilities across the enablement team and beyond. Role-based policies consider who can publish content; who should review content for brand, message and metadata policy consistency; and who ultimately approves the content. Such policies give Dan and his team guidelines for analysing and reporting key usage and performance metrics for content to understand the ROI of each asset.
Highspot’s rich analytics gave Dan clarity into content performance, allowing him to strategically reduce the number of assets threefold, from 2,500 to 800. Many of the eliminated assets were ineffective; some did not include call-to-actions, others did not offer enough value, and others were outdated. He also reduced the number of people who could publish content from 25 to two.
Communicating Content Governance Internally
“Once we could pare everything down to a more manageable volume and establish working governance processes, the enablement team was better positioned to capitalise on new Highspot functionality – such as setting a 12-month time limit on assets,” Dan explains. “We also beta-tested Highspot’s new Scorecards that let us take bulk actions on content. Now anything over 12-months old is automatically archived. This functionality allows us to expand the network of people who can publish content to Highspot.”
Once Dan’s team identified content owners and editors, they conducted governance training to enable their publishers. He says, “We are moving the ability to publish content to Highspot to different people and functions. We have more control and governance around it and are sharing critical best practice do’s and don’ts organisationally.”
Content Governance Best Practices
Dan offers several key pieces of advice for enablement practitioners just getting started on their governance journey. First, he recommends they gain early alignment with their executive decision makers and lean on their Highspot account team to collaborate on the process. “Information and support from Highspot’s account team are among the best I have ever experienced,” Dan says. “Most of their time is spent answering our questions, and they’ll bring in sales engineers to demo new features for us to consider.”
Second, he emphasises the importance of recognising that content governance is a journey, stating, “You can’t do everything all at once.”
Third, Dan says his most significant conclusion was realising that Rimini Street’s sales enablement solution isn’t just a tool for the field. “You need to look at it strategically, and that’s where we have come a long way,” he says. “We view our Highspot relationship as very strategic, and we seek to maximise the impact. At the end of the day, our Highspot system will help us close more sales and make more customers happy during the onboarding process. That is exactly what we are trying to accomplish, and in fact, what we are accomplishing with Highspot.”
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