Today, an internet user spends an average of 147 minutes per day on social media, viewing/reading a variety of content. It indicates that in order to be successful, a website, brand, or organization must produce quality content that helps it connect with its audience and increase its reach.
Content is king in the online world. The demand for a person who can plan, design, create, edit, and publish content, in short, a content strategist, is now more than ever. A content strategist uses a number of skills to generate content that matches the brand’s voice and goals.
This article explains everything you need to know about content strategists to decide whether it is the right career for you or not.
What is a content strategist?
A content strategist is a person who analyzes a company’s goals and its customer’s needs to deliver content that brings the two together. He performs different tasks such as content planning, designing, development, creation, management, analysis, and maintenance.
A content strategist makes sure that he delivers the right content to the right audience at the right time. While doing so, a content strategist focuses on ‘why’ and ‘how’ questions like ‘how this form of content can connect with the audience emotionally’ and ‘why should a particular tone or format should be used to target a particular audience.’
The content can be in any form, including written copies, tweets, blog posts, graphics, and videos, and can be distributed across social media platforms, websites, and mobile apps. That is why you may also see people calling a content strategist with many other names like website content strategist, digital content strategist, UX content strategist, and creative content strategist.
Content strategist job descriptions vary from company to company, depending on a company’s basic needs. For instance, some companies may focus on the development of creative content and marketing, while others may put more emphasis on analytical skills.
What does a content strategist do?
Primarily, a content strategist is responsible for presenting relevant content and conveying a brand’s message to customers. He performs a variety of tasks to play his role. Enlisted below are a few tasks that a creative content strategist performs.
The first thing that a content strategist does is the identification of goals. He understands what message the brand wants to convey, and then he sets content goals that align well with the brand’s goals.
Setting goals helps a content strategist use his resources and energy on content that can really make a difference. It also helps avoid distractions that waste time and effort.
Execute a thorough research
Online research plays an important role in determining which type of content a brand needs to produce for each channel.
A website content strategist learns about different types of customers and their thoughts through in-depth research. He learns about the latest trends and world events to use them to create better engagement and interaction with customers.
Determine content structure
It involves giving the content a specific structure. The content strategist makes sure that there is a connection between each piece of the content. He determines which kind of content should be prioritized on each platform.
Develop content guidelines
Each social media platform has different content requirements. A content type that works on Facebook may not create engagement on TikTok. That is why a digital content strategist creates guidelines for each content medium and makes sure they are followed. He determines the content tone, voice, and style that needs to be used on each platform.
Collaborate with different teams
When a UX content strategist completes content planning, he collaborates with different teams like creative teams, content management teams, and writers to execute his plans and goals. He shares his core goals to make sure everyone has a clear mind and works towards achieving the same goals.
Conduct a content audit
A content audit involves the evaluation of different content elements to see how your content is performing and what your next step should be. A website content strategist analyzes content against different metrics and divides it into three categories; ‘keep as it is,’ ‘refresh/change,’ and ‘remove completely.’
Calculate content ROI
Is your sales copy generating more revenue than the money you spent on it? Are you targeting the right audience in paid content advertising? These are some questions that a digital content strategist finds answers to. He calculates content ROI and measures success over time.
Analyze content strategy
Only the development of a content strategy is not enough. You have to analyze its performance as well to see if it is generating the results you want or if it needs to be changed due to poor results. Digital content strategists evaluate each content strategy and bring changes to it according to the new trends and content needs.
Content strategist skills
Although a content strategist is not a content writer or a copywriter, he may still have to write content/copies at some point. Therefore, content and copywriting skills are the must-have skills for a content strategist. You should know how to write concise yet attractive content to grab your audience’s attention and make them click the ‘buy now’ button.
Empathy helps content strategists plan, create, and distribute content while putting themselves in the place of the person they are communicating with. It helps create a deeper connection with the audience and resonate with their thoughts completely.
Content strategists work with digital media experts to determine which channels are the best for a particular kind of content. A simple blog post can help you attract your audience if you conduct in-depth topic research and write it in the ideal tone and style such that your audience gets the message right away.
Reviewing material and making necessary amendments before publishing it is important in content marketing and strategy. A website content strategist goes through the content and checks if it matches the brand’s voice or not. He lets other team members know what needs to be improved before the publications.
Social media and SEO
As a digital content strategist, you should have an in-depth knowledge of different social media channels and the needs of their specific audience. You should also be aware of the basic SEO skills like keyword research, page optimization, link building, rank tracking, and metrics analysis.
Coaching and communication
Strategists work with many other teams. So, they should know how to clearly convey their thoughts and ideas. They make sure that every person working on the content has the same goals in mind.
A digital content strategist knows how to plan and execute marketing campaigns to bring their posts in front of their target audience. They also know how to analyze metrics to see what changes need to be made to achieve the desired results.
How to become a content strategist
Follow these simple steps to become a successful content strategist.
Learn digital content creation
The most important skill you need to become a content strategist is content creation. You should learn different ways of writing content and then, with practice, develop your own content writing way. Learn how to get content ideas and keep yourself up-to-date in order to share the latest information with your audience.
If you are new to this field, you can learn content creation from online courses. The internet is full of free and paid resources. Try the free sources first and then move to the paid ones to have in-depth knowledge.
Get started with SEO
Once you learn how to create content, it is time to learn how to rank that content. For this, you need to learn the basics of SEO like link building, keyword research and placement, etc. Again, you can learn the skill from online gurus.
Learn basic content strategist skills
To get success in this field, you need to have good communication, coaching, time management, multitasking, content presentation, and marketing skills.
Create your business accounts on social media to test your content strategist skills.
Find online work
Start with the online work. Many freelance platforms are providing equal opportunities to beginners and experts. Create professional profiles on those platforms and start offering your services as a freelance content strategist. Keep your rates low in the beginning. Increase them gradually once you start getting experience and testimonials.
Build your portfolio
Develop a portfolio consisting of your best work. Add project details, results, and client reviews to make your portfolio more compelling.
Apply for your dream job
Now that you have gained a little experience, learned the basic skills, and developed your portfolio, it is time to apply for the content strategist job in your favorite company.
You can also start your own content strategist agency to deal with a variety of clients directly and offer them numerous services.
Content strategist salary
Like many other careers, a creative content strategist gets paid according to his experience level, skill set, qualification, and industry type.
According to Glassdoor data, the estimated total salary for a content strategist is around $90,582/year in the United States. It consists of base salary and additional salary. The average base salary for content strategists is $73,845/year, while the additional salary is $16,737/year, including tips, commission, and bonuses.
Content strategist qualifications
Many employees prefer creative content strategists with a bachelor’s degree in communications, marketing, English, advertising, journalism, information management, creative writing, or technical writing.
When looking for a content strategist job, your qualifications do not play as important a role as your skills and experience play. Therefore, if you have at least five-year experience working as a content strategist but do not have a bachelor’s degree in any of the subjects mentioned above, you may still be able to secure a good content strategist job.
Content strategist interview questions and answers
Q. Tell us about your work experience.
To answer this question, you should have your portfolio with you. It should contain your most successful projects. If you have a published leaflet, a book, or anything else, then include it in the portfolio as well to demonstrate your creativity and skills. Try to add different kinds of materials to your portfolio.
Q. How do you generate content ideas?
Don’t say that you check your competitors’ content and copy their ideas. Instead, show that you put more effort into generating ideas. Tell them that you use your knowledge, years of experience, and data analysis skills to come up with creative content ideas.
Q. What do you like about our content strategy? What needs to be improved in it?
Before going for the interview, make sure you first conduct in-depth research to study the social media profiles of the company. Analyze their content style and tone, and notice what audience they target. Try to look for the points of improvement and give your suggestions during the interview.
Q. How do you make content SEO-friendly?
This question is asked to test the SEO skills of the interviewee. You can tell them that you do keyword research to find low competition, relevant keywords. You use them in your headings, URL, alt tags, and other important areas. You also add relevant internal and external links and images.
What makes a good content strategist?
A good content strategist stays on top of the trends and has command over content creation skills. Not only that, but he also analyzes the metrics of each campaign to find its shortcomings and strengths and make the next campaign better than the previous.
Is being a content strategist a good career?
With the increase in content consumption, many brands are focusing more on improving their digital content to expand their reach and increase revenue. This has increased the demand for content strategists more than ever, making it a good career choice for digitally savvy content creators.
Content is considered the king today, increasing the global demand for content strategists. If you have the right skill set, meaning content editing, creating, and delivering abilities, the content strategy might be a good career choice for you.
Develop the skills explained above. Explore them using your social media business accounts or websites to generate results. Showcase your successful results in your portfolio to attract clients.