Updated: Oct 2
I've worked in content marketing for over 15 years. I have clients on 3 continents and have written successful copy for everyone from startups to enterprises.
Even after I deliver great content strategy results, my clients still ask me the same question.
“What does a content marketer do, exactly?”
So let's answer it once and for all.
The big question — “What does a content marketer do?” — ties in the answers to a bunch of smaller questions. Here are 6 content marketing questions I'll tackle in this article:
Let's look at each of these questions a little closer.
What Are the Goals of Content Marketing?
Content marketing isn't just a “writing job”. A successful content marketer isn't concerned with fancy words and overly sales-y text.
Every content marketing campaign should have 6 clear goals:
Clearly identify the target audience of your campaign.
Research consumer trends and keywords related to your topic.
Develop a content strategy using branded tone and style.
Create content marketing pieces built on that strategy.
Identify metrics to define success — your marketing results must be measurable.
Long-term tracking of the campaign and development of future content strategy.
As I said, content marketing isn't just a writing job. It requires a deep-rooted understanding of your brand, your industry, your competitors and the needs of your audience.
When you find a successful content marketer, you'll reap some of content marketing's massive benefits.
What Are the Benefits of Content Marketing?
The benefits of content marketing are measurable and specific. This isn't creative writing — content marketers are results-oriented.
Here are a few tangible benefits of hiring a content marketer:
A visible brand personality. Tell your audience who you are, what you do, and how you serve. And do it on your terms, in your brand's distinct tone and style.
Increased lead generation. 67% of marketing teams state content marketing increased their lead pool. (Ahrefs)
Increased brand loyalty. 63% of marketers saw increases in repeat customers during content marketing campaigns. (Ahrefs)
Consumer connection. 44% of consumers read 3-5 branded articles before making a purchasing decision. (DemandGen)
People want content over ads. 74% of people say they're tired of social media ads, and over 80% of millennials don't trust conventional advertising at all. Consumers prefer actual content over blatant sales copy.
Increased sales. Content marketing is an inbound marketing strategy, which drives 2-4x the conversions of outbound marketing campaigns.
Speaking of which — let's talk about inbound marketing and its importance to your content strategy.
What is Inbound Marketing, and Why Is It Important?
Outbound marketing happens when you actively reach out to consumers to drive interest in your product or service.
Inbound marketing focuses on creating valuable content that draws people to your website or marketplace.
Inbound marketing has several key advantages over outbound marketing:
A captive audience. Inbound marketing draws consumers to your website, to experience further branded content and calls to action. It's brand awareness in a bubble, and it drives lead generation.
Increased conversion rate. The average outbound marketing lead conversion rate is 1.5-2%. Compare that with inbound marketing conversion rates, which sit at 4.5-10% as of 2022.
Increased ROI. 53% of marketing professionals state inbound marketing leads to higher ROI than outbound marketing.
It costs less. Want data-driven proof? Inbound marketing leads cost 61% less than outbound marketing leads.
Data in above section sourced from LeadLander
A content marketing specialist operates in an inbound marketing capacity. Expert content marketers create engaging content that draws consumers to your landing page — and keeps them there.
How Does Content Marketing Strategy Relate to SEO?
“If there’s something precise you want to tell us regarding your page, I suggest making it as apparent as possible." – John Mueller, Google Search Advocate
An expert content marketing manager understands the value of high quality content placement.
In terms of search engine optimization (SEO), that means keyword mastery.
Think of keywords as the major pieces of your Google search term. Did you search for “best espresso in Seattle” today? That was your search keyword.
73% of B2C companies use SEO keyword research in their content creation process.
A content strategist conducts thorough keyword research on your brand and its industry. A content creation strategy is developed around the top-ranking keywords in your industry space.
The objective? To capitalize on both popular and under-served keywords in your digital content. The better your content serves those keywords, the stronger the SEO of your content marketing campaign is.
How Are Content Marketing and Digital Marketing Different?
Speaking of digital marketing, there are a few things that separate it from content marketing.
Most notably, digital marketing is a much broader term. Digital marketing includes all of the following:
Influencer and content creator marketing
Social media marketing
Pay-per-click (PPC) and paid search marketing
Short version: not all content marketing is digital marketing. But all good digital marketing requires content marketing strategy.
Example #1: A YouTube content creator is a digital marketer. The person who writes the storyboards and written content for their videos is a content writer.
Example #2: Your Google Ads campaign is a digital marketing strategy that requires expert copywriting. The copywriter you hire must create compelling content, which makes it a content marketing role.
Should I Hire a Content Marketer For My Business?
This is the easiest question to answer of all. Every successful brand has a killer content marketing strategy.
Nike's content marketing team turned it from a niche shoe brand into an athletic apparel powerhouse.
Warby Parker's short brand story helped it take on the entire eyeglasses industry.
Your potential customer base doesn't want to be sold to. They want to be invited into your world. Spoken to like a friend. Treated like a VIP.
They want to be engaged by your landing page, informed by your blog post copy, and sold on your social media platform.
All of that — that's the content marketer job description.
It's my job description, for that matter.
I'd love to talk to you more about it. Free of charge.