Planning your content marketing A-Team

Sonja Jefferson

Content Marketing Team

A couple of years ago the question people were asking us is ‘what is content marketing?‘ Now the question is more likely to be ‘how do I make content marketing work?‘ Getting the right people on board is a key step in that process. We’ve put names to faces to show you the roles you need to fill.

As you know, the content marketing process needs careful planning to ensure you produce the right high quality content consistently and regularly, and that it gets into the hands (or onto the screens) of your target audience. To make it all happen and ensure success you need to pull together a crack content marketing team, with clear roles and responsibilities.

Here are the essential roles that, whatever the size of your organisation, you need to allocate skilled resource to.

Direct

  • Director of content. Senior person who owns the process and is responsible for its success. Internal role.
  • Content strategist. Takes responsibility for creating, documenting and driving forward the content marketing strategy, taking the learning and refining the strategy along the way. Internal or external role.
  • Content manager. Manages the content process to ensure that it delivers the aims of the content strategy and content plan and meets the needs of the audience. Ensures all content created lives up to best practice and is managed effectively over time across all channels. Internal role.

Create

Content team editor writer subject matter expert

  • Editor in chief. Responsible for quality – does this content meet the real needs of our customers? Makes decisions on what content gets created (and what does not). Manages the approval process. Final sign off on all content – the valuable stamp of approval. Internal role, someone who knows the business and the subject matter well, with editing skills to boot.
  • Subject matter experts. Knowledgeable experts in the business who are tasked with coming up with ideas for content, writing first drafts and of course distributing the content to their networks. We suggest this team includes both technical experts and frontline salespeople who know the questions customers are asking. Internal roles.
  • Content writer. A skilled writer on your team who turns drafts into polished content. This role can be internal or outsourced.

Content marketing team WEB + SEO

  • Website expert. Design, development, UX – complex web enhancements that cannot be addressed via the CMS, responsible for UX as content builds, keeping up with latest web trends and developments, marketing automation adviser. Internal or outsourced.
  • SEO expert. Looks for keyword opportunities and ensures all digital content is optimised for search. Internal or outsourced.

Content marketing team VIDEO + DESIGN

  • Content designer. Produces web and blog illustrations, design of guides (printed and digital), infographics, SlideShare presentations, photography etc. This role can be internal or outsourced.
  • Video producer. Creates and edits quality video content. This role can be internal or outsourced.

Distribute

Content marketing team COMMUNITY + PR

  • Community manager. Posts fresh content up on social media, makes connections and answers questions, notifies subject matter experts of queries and opportunities, thanks those who share content. Responsible for getting new blog articles up on the site (checking they are labeled correctly for SEO). Ensures email newsletters go out on time. Responsible for the CRM. In charge of content distribution – communicates all new content around the organisation. Preferably internal role.
  • Outreach and PR. This person seeks out and manages media relations and opportunities, including traditional media and online, guest post opportunities, events. Internal or outsourced role.

Learn

Content marketing team SKILLS + MEASURE

  • Measurement officer. Tracks measures on a monthly basis and reports against goals. Internal or external role.
  • Skills trainer. Ensures that all areas of the organisation have the skills required to carry out the content strategy e.g. content marketing awareness training, blog and content writing skills, social media skills, selling with content. Internal or external role.

 

Big business vs. small business

In a small business – one person may well take on many of these roles, with an outsourced team at their beck and call. Here at Valuable Content it works like this:

  • Sonja = content strategist and content manager, gets content up on the website (I love doing that), measurement, events.
  • Sharon = chief writer, queen of VC social media, PR and outreach, coordinates the design work.
  • Shared roles = subject matter expertise, editing, writing, community management and content distribution.
  • Outsourced roles = design, web, video, email marketing, SEO support.

In a larger organisation, you may be able to spread the load more evenly.

Build your A-Team so the plan comes together

Whatever size of business you’re in, the key is to make sure people are clear on their roles, and have all the support they need to do a great job. Sort that, and you’ll be away. And to paraphrase the A team ‘don’t you just love it when a plan comes together!’

 

How does it work in your business? We’d love to know. Any roles you’d add?

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Images courtesy of designer and illustrator Lizzie Everard. Do you think she was modelling any of these on us?

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