5 Key Skill Sets of a Successful Content Marketer

Posted on June 27th 2013

5 Key Skill Sets of a Successful Content Marketer

ImageContent marketing has become a top priority for B2B companies of all sizes. According to research by the Content Marketing Institute, 91% of B2B marketers use content marketing with 94% of them creating content from scratch, as opposed to repurposing or reposting third party pieces. Further, Sprout Content reports that 68% of Chief Marketing Officers plan to increase their content marketing budget in 2013. Clearly, the importance of content marketing is rising as B2B companies realize its potential to generate leads and drive engagement.

Although falling under the general umbrella of marketing, the role of a content marketer is quite different and unconventional from traditional marketing. The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as:

“a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”

From this definition, you can likely think of numerous important skill sets that a successful content marketer must embody; here are 5 skills that are executed by content marketers on a regular basis:

1. Strong writer and storyteller

As the title describes, a content marketer’s role revolves around working and managing content. Although writing content such as blog posts can be outsourced, it’s still imperative that content marketers have strong writing skills. And regardless, it’s highly unlikely for a content marketer to survive in their role without actually writing their own original content! As such, the ability to write interesting content in a clear and concise manner is crucial for a successful content marketer. Depending on your industry, this might mean taking complex topics, such as HTML5 and responsive design, and breaking them down into easy-to-understand stories. Other times, a content marketer might need to take popular (and usually over-done) industry topics, such as social media, and find ways to provide a unique and valuable perspective on it.

Along with being a strong writer, successful content marketers are also fantastic storytellers. The best types of content are generally ones that your audience can relate to; it tells a story that connects with people’s emotions and provides insight into questions they’ve been having or problems they’ve been struggling with.

2. Strong editing and grammar skills

Writing and editing are two very different things and a good content marketer must possess both skills. Editing other people’s work requires being patient and detail-oriented: you need to have an eye for noticing minor grammatical errors or juggling words and sentences around without altering the text’s meaning. Often times, editing also requires making alterations to a piece of text while retaining the original author’s tone and style. This means having the awareness to recognize the elements that comprise an author’s voice; it’s then important to make edits that enhance the quality of the text and communication of the message while retaining the integrity of the author’s voice.

3. Good research skills

Connected to writing and editing, a content marketer also needs to have good research skills. Often times, it’s important to back up your content with credible stats and research; in these instances, you need to know what you’re looking for and where to look. Anyone can research a topic if provided an infinite amount of time, but a great content marketer can research quickly, effectively, and can consolidate their findings into meaningful key takeaways.

4. Thinking creatively

People these days are bombarded with all types of content from the millions of mini-publishers that are brands, organizations, and individuals. Getting your content to stick in such a saturated market is no easy feat and that’s precisely why content marketers must be able to think creatively. Aside from having a deep understanding of the types of content that are relevant and interesting to your target audience, it’s also important to think of creative ways to get your message onto people’s screens.

5. Seeing the big picture

It’s easy to get wrapped up in the world of content, but effective content marketers always understand the role they play in the bigger context ofmarketing. In essence, they remember that they’re creating content with the objective of driving profitable customer action. They see the big picture and have a strategic approach to aligning content with their overall marketing goals.  

What other skill sets are important for content marketing? Let us know in the comments!

aaliyah.madadi

Aaliyah Madadi

Aaliyah Madadi is part of the marketing team at Uberflip where she specializes in B2B content marketing. She recently published several whitepapers, including: "Do-It-Yourself Digital Design: A Guide for Marketers" and "Responsive Design: An Overview for Marketers". Follow her on Twitter @aaliyahmadadi and @Uberflip.

See Full Profile >

Comments

Ajay Prasad
Posted on June 27th 2013 at 9:20AM

Fantastic work Aaliyah! The skills shared for content marketing are perfect. Specially on thinking creatively on how to get more readers is the most important thing. Thanks for sharing the tips and information.

aaliyah.madadi
Posted on June 27th 2013 at 1:06PM

Thanks Ajay!

MikeWilson718
Posted on June 27th 2013 at 12:36PM

I think that content marketing is easily becoming one of the best ways to get noticed. Editing and grammar skills is easily the most important part of this because you won't look credible as a writer if there are spelling and grammatical mistakes all over the place. Creating engaging content by coming up with some good ideas is critical if you want people to come back for more and share the content with their friends. Research is important too because you have to know what you're talking about, and if you don't, you have to back up your material with facts, even linking to relevant sites where people can read more about something they still are unclear about. Thanks for sharing this Aaliyah!

aaliyah.madadi
Posted on June 27th 2013 at 1:06PM

Exactly, Michael! Glad you enjoyed it.