Marketers help businesses maximise sales revenue and profits by developing strategies to promote your product or service to your target audience.
However, a content marketing specialist dives deeper into:
- Content creation
- Content distribution
- Consumer interests
- Industry trends
One of the main things they’re responsible for is putting together a narrative woven with your brand values that fit in with your business objectives.
In this guide, we’ll go through the primary results they’re capable of delivering, how they’re achieved, and how to develop your skills if you’re looking to become a content marketing specialist yourself.
What Results Can a Content Marketing Specialist Deliver?
A content specialist brings value to the business by helping them achieve the results listed below. These are also some of the reasons why they’re hired in the first place.
Drive Targeted Traffic
Targeted traffic means getting visitors who have a need that’s related to your brand or product values.
Rather than reaching people that don’t fit into your target market, it’s more meaningful to reach those that are likely to become paying customers. Otherwise, the content marketing efforts won’t pay off in the long-term because the end result isn’t focused on maximising your sales revenue.
To reach those potential customers, you’ll need to grasp a good understanding of their interests and pain points.
Improve Your Conversion Rate
Including a call to action on certain web pages or content is essential if you want readers to take a specific action such as:
- Creating a free account
- Signing up for your email newsletter
- Registering for an online webinar
Aside from using content to reach new audiences and unique website visitors, it can also be used to nurture your relationship with existing readers and customers. With a content marketing specialist, they’ll know what type of content to create to appeal to your audience who are at different stages of the customer journey.
Before focusing on converting leads into customers, the first step is to get enough people to the top of your sales funnel. In other words, raise brand awareness by promoting your business in the right places so that your target audience is aware of your existence.
Content marketing is one way to get inbound leads. Meaning, you’re getting potential customers coming to you, which is more effective and sustainable for growing your startup company.
However, this only works when they’re interested in your content and the service you have to offer.
That’s why it’s important to give value to your audience by providing fresh insights and answers related to their search queries or pain points. Not only does this position you as an industry leader since you’re building a reputation for solving certain problems. But it helps build trust and an emotional connection.
Increase Business Revenue
One priority for startup companies in the early phases is to maximise growth and profitability.
Content marketing fits into the overall business strategy because it’s directly linked to growing your business. After all, you’re acquiring new customers by reaching them during the awareness stage. From there, it’s mostly about nurturing your relationship with them.
At different stages of the customer journey, different types of content will be more relevant.
For instance, those at the top of the funnel could benefit more from informational content. So, a blog post or step-by-step guide would be effective.
Each time you give something valuable, it builds trust and helps them move along the sales funnel so that they’re a step closer to becoming a customer.
The Responsibilities of a Content Marketing Specialist
Now that we’ve gone through the primary outcomes a content specialist can achieve, we’ll look at the process behind them.
Conduct Audience and Industry Research
It’s important to have an in-depth understanding of your audience’s:
- Pain points
Each of these gives insight into how you can create content that strikes a chord to leave a more profound impression. Staying ahead of consumer interests and industry trends is also important to ensure you’re focused on topics that are relevant.
Produce Engaging Content
This can be used as a marketing asset to grow your business.
Without creating an engaging piece of content, it’s difficult to stand out or catch your audience’s attention. Part of the specialist's responsibility is to actively contribute to writing or editing your marketing copy.
Ideally, you want to plant the idea that if the free content you’re providing is already helpful, then having full access to your product or service features would be even more valuable. If people are reacting positively, then it forms a strong brand impression and can lead to them wanting to learn more about what you do.
Here are a few key content metrics on Google Analytics to keep your eye on:
- Bounce rates
- Click-through rates
- Average time spent on page
- Social shares
Collaborate With Subject-Matter Experts
Collecting quotes from subject matter experts and including them in your content comes with several benefits. One is that it improves the user experience by breaking up the text in your blog post and making complex ideas easier to understand.
Plus, not only does it help with increasing shares and audience engagement. But, it adds to your credibility since you’re getting a first-hand perspective from someone who’s knowledgeable about the topic.
A content specialist understands how to create great content. Part of that involves taking a journalistic approach to make their writing more captivating and insightful.
Optimise Content for Search Engines
Search engine optimisation enables your website to be found on Google.
If you were ranking on the first page of the search engines for a keyword that your audience is entering, it’s likely to drive organic traffic and unique website visitors.
To put it another way, you’re building brand awareness by showing up on the results page where searchers can click on your website. This is another reason why keyword research skills are important for content marketers.
SEO applies when creating content pieces such as:
- Blog posts
- Webpage content
Manage the Editorial Calendar
Organisation and management skills are key. That being said, each piece of content is planned thoroughly before they’re published. When working with other freelance writers or designers, an editorial calendar is vital. This outlines the following:
- Topic ideas
- Content types
Aside from maintaining a consistent publishing schedule, it also enables a smoother workflow and collaboration.
Content distribution refers to the process of what happens after publishing a piece of content.
For instance, once you post an article to your website, it doesn’t end there. The next step is to share and promote it to the relevant marketing channels where your consumers can be found.
Here are a few examples of different content distribution channels and media platforms to consider:
- Email newsletters
- Influencer marketing
- Native marketing
- Social media, e.g. LinkedIn and Twitter
What Distinguishes a Content Marketing Specialist From Other Similar Roles?
There are other roles that make up the content marketing team such as:
- Content writer
- Content strategist
- Content manager
- Head of content
- Managing editor
However, what makes a content marketing specialist different from these other positions is that they’re exceptional at the research and writing process. They know what it takes to put together a narrative that leads to conversions and how to use content to stand out in a competitive market.
How to Become a Content Marketing Specialist – 5 Practical Steps
At this point of the guide, we’ve covered everything regarding their areas of expertise. Including how their duties and responsibilities lead to the main results we’ve pointed out. So now, we’ll walk you through how to become a content marketing specialist in 5 practical steps.
1. Sharpen Your Writing Skills
One effective way to sharpen your writing skills is to read content from other writers in the industry.
However, you’ll find that 80% of your efforts behind the content creation process should be focused on research whereas 20% is focused on the writing itself. That’s because it’s about providing value to your audience.
As you’re writing your piece of content, you’ll need to think like a marketer by looking at the bigger picture to pinpoint how your efforts will lead to growth in revenue.
Here are a few things you can do to improve your writing:
- Make writing a daily habit
- Get inspiration from other writers
- Create a swipe file
- Focus on how to say more with fewer words
- Write the same way you talk
2. Learn the Fundamentals of Digital Marketing and SEO
The most important areas to be familiar with are the following:
- Audience research
- Keyword research
- On-page SEO
- Content promotion
Besides what’s been mentioned, there are several other areas related to digital marketing and SEO that are helpful to understand. But, these are where you’ll be spending a significant amount of time and effort.
3. Put What You've Learned Into Practice
After learning the basics, it’s time to put what you know into practice.
The more experience you get, the more you learn what works and what doesn’t. As you go, you’ll get more insight into how you can improve your strategy and framework to meet your business goals. You’ll also get a better understanding of your audience, which is the core of content marketing.
4. Be Aware of the Latest Industry Trends
Lastly, stay updated with the latest industry news and consumer trends. This helps with creating evergreen content that’s directly related to your audience’s needs.
It’s another factor that drives targeted traffic to your website since you’re focusing on what’s relevant in the industry. Then, you can link it back to your brand values and the problem you solve.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Content Marketing Specialist?
Based on the insights from GlassDoor, the average salary of a content marketing specialist in the UK is £41,142.
However, their salaries could be as low as £26,000 and as high as £65,000 depending on experience and skill level.
If you’re going to hire an agency, the cost also varies depending on who you choose to work with among several other factors. Another alternative option is to work with freelancers. Unlike agencies, they come at a fraction of the cost and are often specialised individuals with the service they provide.
Here’s How to Find a Qualified Content Marketing Specialist in 72 Hours
Before hiring someone to take on a certain task, it’s vital to review their:
- Work history
It also helps to test them by giving them a short paid project to complete to get more insight into their level of ability. Once you’re happy with the background research, it’s worth scheduling a call to get a better understanding of what they’re like as a professional.
However, the entire recruitment and talent acquisition process to hire a skilled content specialist can be skipped by using Passionfruit.
They’ve made it easier for startup companies to scale by connecting them to their community of marketing specialists.
Each of them has been qualified already so you won’t have to go through that entire process yourself. Instead, you'll be matched with the person who has the expertise to cater to your most complex needs.
The best part is that they all have a proven track record of growing a startup company. But, you could be next!
Before acquiring customers, it starts with building awareness and demand in the first place.
A content marketing specialist guides you in the right direction by bringing value to your audience who are at different stages of the customer journey. But in today’s digital era, anyone can find the information they need through the internet.
What separates you from the competition is how you meet the needs of your consumers.
The most important thing is to get in front of your target audience and give them answers or new insights to solving a problem. Over time, you’ll be positioning yourself as an authority figure and as someone they can trust when they have a certain query.
From there, it’s only a matter of time until they’re ready to take the next step.
Astley Cervania is a freelance writer and content marketer. He works with HR Tech and B2B SaaS companies to scale user growth. You can find him online via his website or LinkedIn.