Content Marketing is the buzzword in digital marketing today. How many of you have heard the following phrases come up in conversation… : “Content is King”, “a good content strategy”, “we need a content department”, “we need to hire a Content Marketer”. With the addition of Hummingbird, a search algorithum used by Google, there is now a big focus on content in search. The introduction of Hummingbird added strength to long-tailed keywords — catering to the optimisation of content rather than just keywords. In reality though do people actually understand what content marketing is? And more importantly why and how they should be doing it?
Since I started out in SEO, many moons ago now, content marketing went under a very different guise. At a very basic level it was known as ‘link building’. Although speeding ahead to 2015, we now know that link building (in its old form) is very bad – gaining unrelated and authoritative links will only hinder the credits of a site – we have penguin to prove it!
I have outlined below eight fun, quick and simple tips and traits that I consider, as an SEO content Manager, when building a solid and effective content marketing team.
A solid understanding of technical SEO
Before creating innovative content, it is imperative to have a solid grasp of the SEO basics. A team that understands how a website is crawled and viewed by search engines is crucial and is the only way to ensure that a site has a solid foundation to begin work. There is no point in creating content and attracting traffic to a site that can’t cope technically or has a very bad user experience!
A different outlook
Some of the most inspirational people I have worked with have come with all sorts of educational backgrounds, from Philosophy, Law, Music, Sports and more! But I think this is what makes them GREAT! They see things from a different angle and identify opportunities that could be overlooked. So, whilst a good solid foundation of SEO knowledge is essential, don’t be put off if you find out your SEO consultant has a past degree in Dance! The good old saying of ‘stepping outside the box’ should be encouraged in content marketing!
Once good content has been produced it isn’t just about “if you build it they will come” – time, effort and some element of ‘hustling’ needs be implemented to make it shine. I look for a team that shows savvy networking skills, colleagues who actually speak to the targeted outreach market and a team who don’t rely solely on online interaction. They go that extra mile and ‘hustle’ to get results.
Encourage a bit of competition
Be that with a colleague, rival agency or yourself, a little competition has never hurt anyone. Make sure your team are inspired by those working around them but will show a bit of a gumption to inspire others back!
A team player
Following on from my above point about competitiveness, I don’t want a team of cut throat marketers and neither should you, this will only mean you will lose sight of your objective. A GREAT content marketer should be able to work and perform well in a team as well as shine as an individual.
Knowing what your clients’ business objectives are
This is a very important point. When creating content both onsite and offsite, a great content marketer needs to be very much aware and understand what their clients’ business objectives are. This could be growth in traffic, an increase in conversions or a level of social engagement. Whatever it is, they need to be able to produce content that will meet all KPIs and measurable factors.
Don’t be afraid to fail
We content marketers can get precious about our ideas and sometimes, you just have to let it go and start over. As long as they can speak up and say ‘this won’t work’ (or isn’t working) and learn from it, then I’m happy. It’s much better than just continuing blindly forward and wasting valuable resource and budget for very little ROI.
Are they a cultural fit? Will they work well within the organisation? And with existing team members? Will they give you an edge or insight that no one else can already provide?
This list can go on and on but hopefully it’s a helpful snapshot into what I tend to look for in a GREAT content marketing team, and so far, it’s definitely working for me!
If you’re interested in experiencing life as a Founder then take a look at some of our existing vacancies. If there’s nothing there that quite fits with your talents but you know you’d be a fantastic addition to our team, please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you.