What to Look for in a (Future) Content Marketer

Jan 2015

What to Look for in a (Future) Content Marketer Resonance Content MarketingIt’s always a pleasure to hear from my friend Raegan Hill. Not only is she one of Houston’s top marketing recruiters, but she’s also one of the best-informed people I know, always on top of current trends and developments. Whenever I hear from Raegan, I know I’ll get either (a) a juicy tidbit of strategic gold or (b) a question that I can spin into a timely blog post (like this one).

Last week, Raegan emailed me about a growing predicament among hiring managers in the marketing world. They’re crying out for content marketers to add to their teams … but the people qualified to fill those positions are few and far between. Because of this shortage, companies are having to to seek out people with certain transferable skill sets and train them to be content marketers. (BTW, we can help with that last part.)

At the same time, the popularity of content marketing has elicited a horde of “me too”s who just want to be on the bandwagon but lack the skills to deliver.

What’s a hiring manager to do? How do you find a candidate with the right stuff to become an ace content marketer … and weed out the pretenders?

Here are a few things to look for as you sort through those LinkedIn profiles:

1. Brand Building

A good content marketer knows how to take your company’s existing brand and build content around it. A great content marketer knows how to create a brand around the content itself. (Tweet this)

A terrific example of this practice is the Nuts About Southwest blog, which has transcended Southwest’s existing brand to become a hub (no pun intended) for stories around the airline’s employees and passengers.

What to look for: branding and rebranding projects, brand storytelling

2. Long-Term Focus

One big distinction between traditional marketers and content marketers is that traditional marketing is campaign focused. You plan the campaign, execute it for a set time span, then crunch the numbers and figure the ROI. You’re in, you’re out, you’re done and on to the next thing.

Content marketing, on the other hand, is a continuous undertaking: every blog post, every email, every social media post is another touchpoint that builds on your relationship with your audience. A successful content marketer understands that this mission is a marathon, not a series of sprints. (Tweet this)

What to look for: customer relationship initiatives, customer lifecycle management, customer communications

3. Strategic Mindset

A good content marketer knows that every successful content marketing program has to start with a strategy — one that’s firmly focused on the needs of the audience.

And in an environment that’s fraught with more shiny objects than a carnival funhouse, content marketers need to maintain focus on that strategy and address every new opportunity with the question “Does it make sense?” (Tweet this)

What to look for: strategy creation and execution, strategic review

4. Ear to the Ground

Your content marketing program doesn’t exist in a vacuum. To remain vibrant and relevant, it needs a consistent flow of input from a variety of sources — and not just those within your industry.

As focused as content marketers need to be when it comes to strategy, they need to be equally open-minded and curious when it comes to input. (Tweet this)

A good content marketer makes the time to stay informed about

  • Current events in general
  • Industry trends that affect your audience
  • External factors that affect your audience
  • Happenings within the organization
  • Emerging content practices and technologies

What to look for: continuing education, attendance at conferences and workshops

5. Audience Focus

Make your content all about you and you’ll soon be looking around wondering what happened to your audience. Content marketers need to make sure that every piece of content — from the longest white paper to the briefest tweet — is laser-focused on the current needs and the interests of your target audience.

How do you know what those needs and interests are? Your ideal content marketer uses a variety of tools — from surveys to comment reviews to online focus groups — to keep a finger firmly on the pulse of your audience so that you can respond to their needs. (Tweet this)

What to look for: persona creation, surveys, focus groups, audience research

Is your team looking high and low for the perfect content marketer? What are your criteria? Share your thoughts with us in the Comments — we’d love to hear from you!

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    I just didn’t seem to be able to find the time or the right words to explain what I offer and how my company helps people accomplish their goals. Rachel was able to ask me some questions, do some research and capture my voice while writing my website copy exactly as I needed it to be written.  Now, the copy on my website is much more professional than what I would have created and having this task handled by Rachel and Resonance freed up my time to complete other tasks I am better suited to do.

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    Rachel took the overwhelm and stress out of writing content for my marketing campaign! When I approached Rachel, I was really concerned that I wouldn’t have the time to focus on writing copy for a lengthy marketing campaign that included sales pages, solo emails, newsletters and social media updates. Well, let’s just say I’m glad I hired Rachel because I couldn’t have done it without her support and expertise. I loved how she used my voice and words to craft content that helped me reach and attract my ideal client. As a result of working with Rachel, I added 5 figures to my business in less than 4 weeks, hundreds of new social media followers and exceeded my sales and list building goals! You know your marketing copy is working when you hear someone say, “I see you everywhere”. Thank you Rachel for helping me not only get seen by my ideal clients but get paid!

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    We were experiencing a lack of internal resources to consistently maintain the Ustream blog. So we turned to Resonance Content Marketing to write blog posts on current industry topics while maintaining a consistent tone with the brand. The result is increased website traffic, new lead generation from gated assets on blog, and better educated/qualified leads. And I now have more time to spend on marketing strategy with the confidence that the content we push out is extremely well written and engaging.

    Rachel is an amazing writer and has really managed to create engaging and relevant blog material on topics that aren’t always super interesting. On many occasions, she has been able to quickly turn around one-off requests and the results are always top-notch. She has also helped guide our content strategy based on her expertise in content marketing, which has been a huge asset to our team.

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    We are so happy to have hired Resonance for our social media needs. We spend most of our time serving our clients and studying our field so we can provide the highest quality possible. We no longer worry about our social media, as we have total confidence in the wonderful work Rachel and her team have accomplished.

    Our social media is active, promoted, and is ranking better than ever! People often comment about what they see on our Facebook page. Resonance has added a creative, and artistic twist to our social media that is appealing and captivating to our audience. This has allowed me more time to work with my team and clients, so I can focus on service towards the people that help our business grow.

    I know there will be wonderful content on Facebook, and that Rachel will answer to posts, comments and questions as soon as a comment arrives. I am often impressed at how quickly she responds! Thank you Resonance! I highly endorse Resonance and encourage companies who need social media strategies to work with Resonance! You won’t regret it! 

  • Event Sold Out Two Years In A Row!

    Rachel worked with me on creating a content marketing calendar and content for the Big Social Media Summit (Big SMS) three years in a row. She is very organized and knows just the right amount of posts on social, email newsletters and content to send.  Her content marketing efforts helping us sell out our event three years in a row!  I am expecting the same for October 2014.

    Rachel was hired to write content for our email newsletter and content for our social platforms. In addition, she had a budget to do advertising on social media. She participated in the event live and after the fact to assure buzz was created before, during and after the event. As a result, our event sold out.

    When I work with Rachel, I have total peace of mind.  I know that she is on target, on time, reliable and delivers over and above the results I expect.

    I trust Rachel totally with her ideas on strategy, marketing and the content used to not only promote our events, but also post on my behalf on social networks. I have been doing social media for 8 years, and I hire Resonance to post on some of my social sites as it saves me time, and keeps my social sites relevant and current. They always post great, engaging content that gets my social properties likes, comments and shares.


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    Working with Rachel was a delight. Not only does she communicate very well, but she provided valuable insight about our social media platforms and followers. We have much better engagement with our fans and followers, which increased our likes and interaction rates.


  • One of the best “vendor” relationships I’ve ever had.

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    The result was two-fold. Not only did our ranks of followers grew steadily, the steady drip, drip, drip of content helped us train our personnel and direct their own individual social media efforts.

    Rachel and her team are extremely organized and open to discussion and new ideas. They deliver a rapid response to new opportunities — and an overall feeling of being on the same team. One of the best “vendor” relationships I’ve ever had.

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