6 Content Brief Examples to Inspire Your Strategy

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Fantastic content is the heartbeat of any successful digital marketing campaign. However, scaling content production successfully without sacrificing quality or consistency can pose a real challenge. This is especially true when your brand works with multiple copywriters and content creators to keep production flowing.

Integrating well-crafted content briefs into your ongoing process helps important elements, such as brand voice, quality, and format, remain consistent from one piece to another. But there’s an art to writing truly efficient briefs and setting your content production team up for lasting success. Content brief examples, templates, and similar tools can help.

We cover everything you need to know to create amazing content briefs and use them to elevate your brand. This includes a look at today’s best practices and some effective content brief templates to inspire and guide you.

What Is a Content Brief?

A content brief is a set of guidelines or instructions for producing a specific piece of marketing content. The objective of the brief is to ensure content writers fully understand how to approach the piece so the final product meets requirements and expectations.

A brief can be long or short, simple or detailed. In cases where a content manager wants a writer to put their own spin on the piece, a brief may read more like a set of guidelines than anything else. However, when content needs to meet specific SEO objectives or branding requirements, the brief may outline every detail of the expected results.

How Do Detailed Content Briefs Improve Content Quality?

Detailed content briefs enhance content quality by providing a structured outline and examples, which are essential for scaling and strategic planning. The benefits of a well-crafted content brief include:

Higher content quality

Content briefs are an effective way to ensure a team of copywriters or other content producers fully understand what’s expected of them when it comes to their assignments. These briefs clarify important requirements and factors, including keyword usage, target audience, point of view, delivery time frame, and structure so nothing’s left up to chance.

Faster production times

Well-crafted content briefs minimize the amount of clarification your writers need before they can get to work. They also reduce the likelihood of multiple revisions before the content is ready to be published, leading to a smoother production process for everyone.

Better brand consistency

Every writer naturally showcases their unique voice in their work, but brand consistency is important. Your content should read as one connected source, not as singular pieces with individual styles. You want users to have a cohesive experience when consuming multiple pieces of content or touching base with your brand across different marketing channels. Briefs help facilitate that.

Search engine optimization

A comprehensive content brief helps ensure maximum search engine visibility. Briefs take the guesswork out of proper keyword usage, search intent, formatting, readability, and user experience, leaving writers free to focus on fantastic writing. 

An edge over your competition

The world of content marketing is incredibly competitive, and amazing content is one key to standing head and shoulders above your competition. Thorough content briefs shed light on what competing content may be missing and offer tips for how the writer can differentiate their piece.

What Makes a Good Content Brief?

Fantastic content briefs don’t just happen. They’re the direct result of an organized approach to brief drafting that puts SEO and user intent front and center. The following are some of the qualities the best briefs have in common.


Even the best content creators aren’t mind readers, so it’s important to be clear about what you want and expect from a particular piece. A concise content brief never leaves a writer guessing. It covers all the bases, so everyone’s on the same page.


There’s a fine line between being thorough and long-winded when writing content briefs, and good brief-makers never lose sight of that middle ground. Include everything the writer needs to do a good job without overcomplicating things.

ClearVoice perfectly demonstrates how to craft an effective ebook brief. It tells the writer everything they need to know without bloating the brief with unnecessary elements.


Effective briefs don’t dance around issues. They get to the heart of the matter by bringing the writer up to speed about any potential challenges. Whether you’re looking to beat a particular competitor, win back lost customers, or something else entirely, a good brief is direct about the company’s goals.

Content Marketing Institute’s brief example excellently sets expectations and is candid about desired outcomes.

Key Components of an Effective Content Brief

The fine details of what makes a content brief effective vary depending on your company, niche, and content production strategy. But are there essential elements all briefs should have, and what are the most important parts of a content brief?

Well-crafted content briefs should include the following, regardless of industry or topic.

Components of a content brief: SEO keywords, marketing objective, target audience, style notes, guest posting, word count, call to action.

SEO keywords

SEO will always be a concern when crafting effective web content, so always include a complete list of keywords. Differentiate primary keywords from secondary keywords, and be sure to include any density requirements you want the writer to aim for.

Expectations for visual elements can also be defined in this section, including: 

  • Image sourcing
  • Inclusion of videos or other supporting media

Narrato’s content template example covers a variety of different SEO elements to ensure the resulting content achieves maximum visibility. Examples include primary and secondary keywords, internal and external links, meta assets, and more.

Marketing objective

Add information about the purpose of the content. Are you looking to drive traffic, raise awareness, close sales, or something else entirely? How should the audience feel when they walk away from the content, and what ideal action should they take next?

With a well-crafted brief, the writer knows exactly where you want to go with a piece and is better equipped to help you get there.

Target audience

Always include information on who the content is for. If it’s geared toward potential buyers, add details about where they are in your sales funnel or their unique buyer’s journey. If you mention the target persona in your brief, fine-tune your process by including specific buyer personas.

PayPal’s creative brief does an excellent job of defining many key factors a good brief should cover, including the target audience, with descriptive, clear explanations.

Style notes

Specify the approach you want the content creator to take toward tone, style, and point of view. Should the content be conversational or formal, light-hearted or no-nonsense? General notes on brand voice and style are useful, especially for new writers on the project.

Content structure

Include plenty of information on how the writer should structure their content via a content outline. Many content managers take a detailed approach to this, listing specific H2 and H3 headings and supporting elements for each section. Suggested anchor text and desired placement for internal or external links are also common additions.

Thruuu’s example brief shows a simple but effective method for outlining. It’s complete enough to give the writer plenty of guidance but leaves room for creative freedom.

Word count

Content length determines many things about a piece, including how in-depth the content will be, so always include a target word count. Some content managers look for specific lengths and tight word count ranges, but others prefer to give writers lots of leeway.

Call to action

Ending content with a clear call to action tells your audience what the next step is after finishing your content. Ensure the content creator understands your intentions by adding the goals of your content marketing to the content brief.

6 Content Brief Examples to Inspire Your Strategy

Naturally, you can approach a content brief in various ways. Some content brief types yield consistently solid results, but it’s important to compare successful examples to understand what works.

A good brief can be used again and again or adapted to fit any industry or content niche. Here are a few solid content examples to consider and draw inspiration from.

1. Content Folks

Content Folks’ brief is for a detailed content piece about content calendars that covers everything from their use to how to create your own. It covers everything a writer needs to write well on the topic, including brand goals and key takeaways.

The outline is also thorough, detailing recommended H2s and H3 and what points the writer should cover under each.

2. Brafton

The content brief template from Brafton covers a range of elements a writer should consider when crafting an informative piece for a target audience. Key examples include related keywords, internal links, and questions the audience should be able to answer by the time they’re finished reading.

This brief also gets specific about details important in certain marketing contexts — details like keyword density and specific key performance indicators to consider.

3. Zenbrief

Zenbrief’s brief for a food-focused blog is a terrific example of a brief that includes just about everything a writer needs to do a five-star job. And it manages to do so without appearing overstuffed.

It also helps that this brief is laid out in a way that’s easy for writers to peruse for the first time and refer back to as they work. Many writers return to content briefs repeatedly throughout the writing process to ensure nothing has been missed.

4. The Meta Blog

This simple but effective template from The Meta Blog is another example of how impactful a detailed brief can be when it’s well-organized. Organization is the key to making large amounts of detail and information easy to digest.

The table format makes the elements flow nicely from one to the other, closing with the outline and resource links. This brief is also commendable for including elements such as inspiration sources, target audience, and content goal. By showing writers what you aspire your content to look like, writers are given a foundation before they begin.

5. Wrike

Wrike’s template is everything a content brief should be—comprehensive, concise, honest, and easy to absorb. It’s also noteworthy for including fields that aren’t necessarily standard for all briefs but effective for industries such as healthcare or law, where specificity is essential.

The inclusion of “inflexible H2s and H3s” is also a solid addition, as this lets the writer know right away which headings need to be part of the content for it to hit the mark. Adding research link suggestions to a brief also helps ensure writers start on the right track.

6. Content Harmony

Content Harmony’s example brief presents the necessary information in a legible, logical order. It starts with the most important information a writer needs to begin forming the bones of the article in their head. It progresses through additional helpful elements, including key questions to answer and additional resources that may help.

This structure makes it easy to scale up or down from one brief to another. It even includes information about visuals that will be implemented later so the writer can craft their content around them.

How to Tailor Content Brief Examples for Different Objectives

Although it’s certainly possible to meet your content goals by using an out-of-the-box content brief example like the ones above, it’s possible to get better results if you customize them first and make them your own. Customized briefs:

  • Help writers create content that better meets your unique brand expectations and business goals
  • Improve communication between content managers and writers
  • Save time and lower the likelihood of multiple revisions
  • Facilitate mutually beneficial collaboration between team members
  • Leave nothing significant up to chance

How Can I Create a Content Brief That Aligns With My Content Strategy?

Your content brief is your golden opportunity to tell your writers what you want them to know about your target audience, brand voice, or specific objectives related to that piece. Customizing your templates and examples is the best way to take advantage of that. Here are some tips to get you started:

Start with goals and keywords

All the best content starts with an understanding of the larger goals and intent behind the writing, so start by defining who the content is for and what it’s meant to accomplish. After that, focus on your choice of primary keywords.

Create a structured outline

Think about what format would best serve the specific piece of content and its purpose. For example, a how-to guide may lend itself well to bulleted lists or numbered headings, while a comprehensive guide might be a better fit for multiple H2 headings with supporting H3s and H4s.

When in doubt about what to include and how to approach the outline structure, look at content that’s already ranking well for your keyword. What formats are working for your competitors? How might you improve upon what they’re already doing while differentiating your brand?

The “People Also Ask” section of a Google SERP can also offer valuable insight into what to add to your brief.

Specify audience persona

When visualizing a piece of content, you may have a crystal-clear picture of your ideal reader in mind, but your writer won’t unless you tell them who they should be writing for. Including relevant audience personas in your brief helps your writer understand who will be on the receiving end of their content.

Provide a target word count

Although certain target lengths work better for some types of content than others, each piece should ultimately be as long as needed to cover the topic without dragging on. When building content briefs, you should never leave word count entirely out of the equation.

Be sure to include whether the writer has permission to exceed the recommended word count. Sometimes, a complex topic with a lengthy outline may lend itself to unpredictably long word counts, but that length may not be appropriate in every situation.

Include links to references and competing content

When writing SEO content, it’s helpful to have examples to refer to before getting down to business. For that reason, consider adding the following links to your briefs:

  • High-ranking content competing for the same keywords
  • Examples of similar content that’s well-written and hits the mark
  • Specific links to references, data, or studies your writer should use

For best results, include additional information about what competing articles (or other examples) are doing well vs. where they need to improve. This technique helps the writer craft something that fills those content gaps left by your competitors.

Specify other requirements

Although many professional copywriters and content producers understand a thing or two about SEO, you shouldn’t leave things up to chance when it comes to elements like on-page SEO requirements, especially if you have specifics you need your writers to adhere to.

Do you need the writer to include one keyword at least four times but another with low search volume only once or twice? Put it in the brief — and don’t forget to specify the placement for the keywords, such as in a certain number of headers or specific sections within the content.

Tools and Resources for Creating Content Briefs

Here’s a closer look at some tools you can integrate into your repertoire for a more productive content creation routine.


ChatGPT has drawbacks and weaknesses. However, one of its strengths is the ability to help create content outlines and briefs. Start with a target keyword, a working title, or both to prompt a starter brief. Then, tweak the results to fit your requirements.


Narrato is an AI-powered platform that helps facilitate various aspects of your content creation workflow, including brief creation. It allows you to quickly generate SEO-focused content briefs, create content drafts, collaborate with team members, easily assign or manage tasks, and more.

Google Trends

Do you need help selecting your next round of keywords or zeroing in on a trending topic to post about? Google Trends is one of the more accessible tools out there for keeping your finger on the pulse of what Google users are searching for at any given time.


InLinks is another terrific tool for taking some of the headache out of your SEO strategy. Deploy a variety of different key SEO elements at scalable levels and build topic clusters with ease. You can even brainstorm, create, and implement a content schedule that includes all your marketing channels.

Crowd Content 

At Crowd Content, we offer a wide variety of resources to take the confusion out of drafting content briefs and facilitating an airtight content marketing strategy. We offer valuable e-books, checklists, content calendar templates, content services, and more to help you fill in the gaps.

Take your content creation strategy to the next level with our proven strategies and free content brief template, plus check out our comprehensive guide on the topic. With our assistance, you can watch your content strategy transform before your eyes.

Sample Content Briefs

Whether you’re new to drafting killer content briefs or simply want something to get you started in the right direction, a good content brief template is a reliable starting point. When you’re ready, elevate your results by developing your own custom templates based on the effective examples we’ve covered.

In the meantime, here are a few free and paid brief templates to try:

Free Content Brief Templates

The following brief templates are free to download and try.


This is a solid brief template that works well for various content types. It’s simple, user-friendly, and well-organized. However, the fact that it only gets into key SEO details further down may not be the best fit for optimization-focused content.


This Avo template is highly comprehensive and has multiple pages, so it’s a great option if you need something more technical. Some elements, such as link targets and CTAs, are still missing, so you may want to add them yourself.

Crowd Content

Our free content brief template covers everything needed to get the results you want from your content. You can use it to easily set crucial SEO parameters, create clear directives for your content, ensure maximum readability, and more. We make sure your briefs never miss a beat. Just tell us a bit about yourself first.

Paid Content Brief Templates

Ready to kick things up a notch and try a paid template? Try one of the following resources on for size.

Content Harmony

Content Harmony offers a solid template system that simplifies the process of creating briefs for a wide range of needs. Best of all, the briefs are fully customizable — a must if you’re serious about results.

Newcomers can get their first 10 briefs for $10 but need to sign up for the platform’s content management service after that.


Notion features an entire database of free and paid content brief templates to try. Some are available thanks to Notion itself, while others are the beautiful work of independent creators.

Many include additional assets for assigning tasks, tracking progress, and more. Pricing varies from template to template, averaging between $10 and $50. However, some options require a Notion account to access.

Now that you’ve mastered the art of the content brief, it’s time to take the next step toward content excellence.Crowd Content can help you take your next content creation strategy further with our top-tier content strategy service. Take full advantage of our dynamic content brief examples, leverage proven industry expertise, and learn how to better integrate briefs into your content strategy today!

Rick Leach

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Rick Leach, the Vice President of Content Operations at Crowd Content, is a seasoned professional in orchestrating large-scale content initiatives. At the helm of a dynamic team of content managers, QA specialists, and production assistants, he oversees the team’s production of high-quality content for businesses around the globe. Rick's expertise extends beyond operations management to providing strategic insights on scaling and producing outstanding content, making him a respected voice in the content creation industry.

Rick's journey in the content industry is preceded by more than five years as an Advertising Sales Manager at The Tampa Tribune, where he refined his skills in media sales and advertising. And his entrepreneurial spirit is evident in his successful 17-year venture as the proprietor of an e-commerce business.

On a personal front, Rick's life is as fulfilling as his professional endeavors. A proud U.S. Navy veteran, he enjoys a blissful family life, married with four children and a grandchild. Originally from New England but now residing on the Gulf Coast of Florida, Rick is an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots.

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