Every business lives or dies by the way it communicates. Whether it’s advertising, press releases, social media, email marketing, or blog posts, the best way companies can get the message out about its products or services is via digital communication.
Content marketing covers a range of communication techniques on digital platforms: from blog posts to Instagram, from Facebook to the newsletters you send out to current or prospective clients. And effective content marketing cannot be improvised; rather, it is taking over from advertising in many cases, and requires a solid strategy and quality content.
In the early stages of a business, your marketing manager will probably oversee all this work. But as your business grows, you should consider hiring a content marketing manager (or content associate) who can take on the essential task of copywriting.
What is a Content Marketing Manager?
An ideal content marketing manager is a creative individual with a background in marketing and has exceptional copywriting skills. This is a person who can write great digital content, work within a content management system (CMS), meet deadlines, and turn on a dime as trends change.
Many content marketing managers are experienced writers or editors, or both; although, they don’t have to be the only writer on your team, but they should have solid writing and editing skills. In the early stages of a startup company, your content marketing manager may be responsible for writing the copy you use to communicate, but as you grow and depending your business goals, they will more likely manage in-house or freelance writers.
Content marketing managers need a wide range of skills. They need to know how to:
Manage a CMS (content management system), such as WordPress.
Work with social media, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and others.
Manage mailing lists, customer databases, and CRM software.
Optimize content for SEO, through keyword focus, hashtags, images, etc.
Tailor content to different channels and different types of users.
Follow new trends as they arise and react while they are fresh.
Find new audiences and provide content that is useful to them.
Commission original blog content to attract organic search traffic.
Analyze metrics and meet targets.
Analyze web traffic and suggest changes to your company’s website when appropriate.
React quickly when a particular strategy isn’t working.
Why Do You Need a Dedicated Content Marketing Manager?
Your digital content strategy covers a lot of areas. You may have a blog, you may send out email newsletters, and you may use social media; or all of the above. And the reasons for creating digital content can vary. Some companies use these tools to create awareness of their brand or products; others to interact with customers and help drive sales. And some companies focus their strategy on creating SEO-friendly content to generate organic search traffic. But whatever your company’s goal, you need someone who can plan and organize all your digital content with the big picture in mind.
A dedicated content manager can work with your marketing team to plan and implement a broad strategy across different channels. This can help your business when you are growing rapidly and want to target new demographics, or just to keep your existing customers aware of new and improved products and services. And a content marketing manager can look at the metrics of your company’s various content efforts and adjust the focus on different channels to prioritize the ones that perform best.
When Should You Hire a Content Marketing Manager?
When you should hire a content marketing manager depends on a number of factors. If the majority of your marketing is online, then you should plan to have someone in this position as soon as you have products or services to sell. You may have found someone who can manage your social media channels, but ramping up to more extensive content – blog articles, white papers, videos, etc. – requires a different skill set.
There comes a time when you realize that your business needs to implement a long-term strategy, beyond simply tweeting and posting on LinkedIn. And that’s when you need to hire a content marketing manager. Your CEO or other startup founders may have been blogging from time to time, but they’re too busy to keep this up as the business grows.
A skilled content marketer knows how to maximize engagement from existing customers and users, and also how to generate new customers through creative content. They can oversee a company-wide strategy of coherent messaging so your website, Twitter feed, and LinkedIn pages all provide a consistent range of content. And they can find freelancers to create the content that they or your other employees cannot create.
Not everyone is a good enough writer to create articles that other sites will link to, or create videos that people will want to watch on YouTube. In some ways, a content manager is like a conductor in an orchestra. If your business has reached the stage when it needs an orchestra to communicate, then it’s time to hire a content marketing manager.
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