Today, content marketing is one of the most in-demand careers across nearly every industry, and it’s growing. According to a HubSpot survey, 90% of marketers currently involved in content marketing plan to continue investing the same amount of money into the channel in 2022.
Organizations are looking for people with the ability to strategize and create content that not only supports a brand’s unique image, but helps it connect with its target audience. These skills are invaluable for today’s companies, because they promote brand awareness, generate leads and make a business more discoverable online — the three main goals of most content marketing campaigns, as identified by seasoned veterans of the industry.
What’s more, professionally produced content that’s backed with a sharp eye on marketing trends and emerging approaches is bringing increasing returns on investment across the board.
According to research by Technavio, the content marketing industry is estimated to grow in value by $487.24 billion through 2026. This really highlights why nearly all industries plan on continued spending for the foreseeable future.
This means there’s ample opportunity for students and marketing professionals to pursue a career in content marketing. One of the best ways to enter this sector on strong footing is to back your skills with a robust marketing degree, like the online Bachelor of Science in Marketing from the University of Alabama at Birmingham Collat School of Business.
Today, we’re taking a closer look at the content marketing specialist career path, what skills it takes to be successful in a role in this industry, and how a marketing degree can help pave the road to success.
Content Marketing Specialist Job Description
Before deciding that content marketing is the right career path for you, it’s important to understand the role of a content marketing specialist. Here, we’ll outline the kinds of tasks you can expect to take on, and the general responsibilities that go along with the role. We’ll also take a look at some salary statistics.
Content Marketing Specialist Responsibilities
The responsibilities of a content marketing specialist may vary slightly depending on the environment and industry in which they work. However, in general, content marketing specialists are responsible for researching, planning, creating and managing high quality content. This includes but is not limited to content that will be published on a brand’s website, blog, social media or other channels.
All of the work that a content marketing specialist does aims to further the success of the brand that they’re producing content for. This includes providing content that engages the business’s audience, aligns with the brand image and feel and serves to enable the company’s other marketing initiatives.
While certainly rooted in traditional marketing practices and processes, content marketing also demands creativity. As a content marketing specialist, you should have the ability to plan and produce written — and, sometimes, visual — content as part of an overarching marketing strategy.
Oftentimes, content marketing specialists will work closely with other departments within an organization, including teams like sales and design. Creating internal or external customer- or client-facing collateral that is informed by the business’s mission, goals and marketing approaches often requires complementary assets from these departments.
Common Mediums that Content Marketing Specialists Work With
Content marketing is more than just written copy. Successful campaigns deploy an array of content over multiple mediums and across various channels. Some of the most popular today are:
- Short-form video
- Interactive content
- Case studies
As a content marketing specialist, you should be prepared to produce content for these channels. Whether it’s writing a classic blog, generating a video script or developing messaging for a whitepaper, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about a lot of different industries.
Content Marketing Specialist Salary
On average, content marketing specialists in the U.S. make about $66,010 annually, according to Comparably. On the higher end of the scale, specialists can expect career growth with opportunities to make upward of $120,460 per year. Further, the average content marketing manager salary is as high as $125,957. Content marketers work in nearly every industry today, including organizations that provide business to consumer (B2C) and business to business (B2B) services.
What Skills Do Content Marketing Specialists Need?
To be successful as a content marketing specialist, there are certain skills that you should have, or at least be interested in developing, as you prepare for a career in the industry. Here are a few examples of key skills:
Content marketing specialists often prove strong writers — and many even start out as an entry-level content writer or content editor. They must have a comprehensive understanding and command of language and grammatical rules, and be able to create copy that is compelling to a target audience. Beyond technical ability in writing, this also means that content marketing specialists should have a strong grip on storytelling. Creativity and stimulating content is essential for brands looking to maintain a target audience’s engagement.
Ideation and Brainstorming
Content marketing is about more than just writing content for a blog post. It’s also up to content marketing specialists to ideate creative concepts to back campaigns, including the overarching theme, content topics, headlines, titles and more. Professionals in the industry must be able to think creatively, brainstorm and come up with more than one idea or option for their clients. All of these concepts should speak to the target audience of the company.
Planning and Scheduling
As much as content marketing is about creativity and the distribution of information, it’s also about execution. Those who are seeking these types of roles should have strong time management, planning and scheduling capabilities.
Oftentimes, a marketing campaign will stick to a rigid schedule and release certain content according to a specific cadence. This is done on purpose — by putting introductory materials out first and then offering up more in-depth content. In doing this, marketers can help lead prospects through the sales funnel and support a conversation. However, these capabilities all rest on the shoulders of a content marketing specialist and their ability to plan, project manage and schedule content.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is the driving force behind most content marketing strategies; it’s what helps content get noticed on search engines and bring in traffic. Understanding SEO means understanding how certain factors can affect a page’s position on the web, or how likely platforms like Google are to recommend it to users. Things like mobile friendliness, user experience and optimized content that includes keywords are just some examples of those factors.
When creating content, particularly within written assets like blogs, white papers and ebooks, content marketing specialists must include robust and thoroughly researched sources to support their points.
What’s more, linking to these strong sources within a piece of content can help bolster SEO through something called backlinking. In this way, comprehensive research skills are critical.
“But research serves another purpose. It teaches you how other people will be seeking the info you are providing,” Digital Marketing Institute explains. “Every search you do for your own content is a lesson learned in SEO.”
Industries That Stand to Benefit the Most From Content Marketing Today
While it’s true that almost every industry could benefit in some way from a robust content marketing strategy, some stand to gain a little more than others. This is because our economic landscape is ever-changing, and depending on where it currently sits, consumers, B2C and B2B companies want information about things that are relevant to the time.
Cybersecurity is arguably more important now than it’s ever been. With more people working remotely and a greater number of cyberattacks happening every single day, cybersecurity companies have a golden opportunity to educate the masses on best practices for internet safety, risk management and more; to consumers and businesses alike. This is most easily done through excellent and accessible content marketing.
Companies that sell digital transformation software or consulting services are having a heyday with content marketing. The world has gone digital, and more and more companies are turning to digitally transformed solutions to do things like keep up with demand, increase efficiency and optimize their workflows.
Digital transformation software companies often use content marketing to not only educate, but also to sell other businesses on the benefits of their software.
There are few industries more back-and-forth than real estate — especially lately. Content marketing is top of mind for many real estate operations as they scramble to educate individuals and businesses in an increasingly uncertain market.
Content marketing in real estate means that buyers become more aware of the market and can make educated decisions. Consumers often rely on the thought leadership of industry experts via well-crafted content marketing to gather valuable information.
Convoluted supply chains and manufacturing processes have become even more complicated in light of recent economic trends. Through content marketing, organizations in the manufacturing industry have the opportunity to position themselves as thought leaders. By doing that, they stand to help other businesses understand current happenings, what’s being done to fix problems and what they can do for themselves to smooth things out.
No matter the industry, content marketing stands to educate, inform and engage the public and other businesses — often with the intent to convert target audience members into customers.
How a Degree in Marketing is Beneficial for a Career as a Content Marketing Specialist
With strong roots in traditional marketing, content marketing is the blossoming bud that resulted from an increased demand for engaging content. Without the former, we wouldn’t have the latter. Getting an education and degree in marketing is a foundational part of the process of becoming a successful content marketing specialist.
Having a strong knowledge of marketing, sales and business strategies is critical for content marketing specialists. For interested students, you can learn all of these skills and more through the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Collat School of Business’s online Bachelor of Science in Marketing program.
Throughout the course, students will increase their skills in:
- Market analysis
- Social media
- Marketing communications
- Digital media
- Relevant tech tools
Additionally, students will learn best practices for promoting products and services by providing valuable information to potential customers. The marketing core section of this degree program offers education in:
- Retail marketing
- Distribution management
- Professional selling
- Market research
- Integrated marketing communication
- Entrepreneurship and marketing planning
To find out more about how the online Bachelor of Science in Marketing can help prepare you for a career as a content marketer, connect with one of our expert enrollment advisors for more information today.