What is a Content Marketer?
A Content Marketer is responsible for setting and executing the content marketing strategy that turns more potential customers into buyers as well as existing customers into repeat buyers.
This includes creating an editorial calendar and managing the entire content process from ideation and research to writing, editing, distribution, and measuring results. As part of this process, they are typically tasked with hiring and managing freelancers to help with various stages of this process.
They typically report to a Director of Marketing or VP of Marketing. In smaller companies, they might report directly to a founder or cofounder.
Over the last decade, this role has generated an increasing level of interest, as you can in the graph below (from Google Trends).
This role is more common in B2B companies, startups, or any organization where there is a longer sales cycle, a focus on generating inbound leads, and increasing customer lifetime value.
When should you hire a B2B Content Marketer?
Companies should hire a Content Marketer as soon as their product or service has some initial, organic momentum.
One of the biggest mistakes that companies - mainly tech startups - make is hiring a Content Marketer as their first marketing team hire. Another common mistake is over-valuing writing expertise over solid marketing and editing chops.
Here are signs that you’re ready to hire a Content Marketer:
- You have at least 1-2 marketers on the team. These team members tend to be “marketing generalists.”
- The product has initial traction and has a repeatable process for generating leads from at least one channel.
- You’re ready to scale your content production.
- Your company has been in business for more than six months.
As you scale content production, this is when you may want to bring additional content marketing team members, freelancers, or a content marketing agency to increase your bandwidth.
Content Marketer Compensation
According to our report, a Content Marketer in San Francisco, Chicago, and New York City earn the most. They net an average of $70,000 - $125,000 in base salary.
|San Francisco, CA||New York, NY||Austin, TX||Chicago, IL||Los Angeles, CA|
|Base | OTE||Base | OTE||Base | OTE||Base | OTE||Base | OTE|
|$85-125K | -||$70-110K | -||$70-110K | -||$70-110K | -||$85-110K | -|
What are a Content Marketer's responsibilities?
The day-to-day responsibilities of a Content Marketer may include:
- Planning out the content roadmap, typically in 30-, 60-, or 90-day intervals
- Researching blog post topics and doing interviews with subject matter experts (i.e. SMEs) inside and outside of the organization
- Hiring and managing freelance writers and editors
- Editing and reviewing content
- Promoting content across organic and paid channels
- Collaborating with your sales, PR, social media, and creative teams
- Measuring your content marketing strategy and campaigns regularly using tools such as Google Analytics, Ahrefs, and SEMrush
- Improving the content marketing strategy and processes to generate more marketing qualified leads and maximize efficiency
What does success look like for a Content Marketer?
While this will look different depending on the size of the company and who the Content Marketer reports to, here are some common KPIs to evaluate a Content Marketer.
- Number of new marketing qualified leads generated (MQLs)
- % of MQLs that results in sales
- Website Traffic (visitors, time on site, etc.)
- % of traffic from organic search
- % of traffic from paid acquisition channels (i.e PPC, Facebook ads, etc.)
- Top referring channels
- Email-related metrics such as open rates and click-through rates
- Number of new email subscribers
- Customer acquisition cost
- Customer lifetime value
What skills does a Content Marketer need to possess?
In our experience, many companies focus too much on writing skills and not enough on marketing, editing, data, and project management skills.
Here are some skills to look for:
- Analytical - A Content Marketer is a strategic role. They need to be comfortable planning out a content roadmap, doing customer persona research, analyzing competitors, identifying content gaps, and measuring their results.
- Great writer - Many Content Marketers have a Bachelor’s degree or prior experience working as a journalist or freelance writer.
- Great editor - This is less about copy-editing and more about how to position a piece of content to maximize the reach and appeal.
- Critical thinking skills - As a strategic role, they need to be able to understand the marketing team’s objectives and incorporate this into their strategy. It’s not just about choosing some topics, but thinking about what will convert best.
- Experience working in a marketing role - Most Content Marketers have at least three years of marketing experience.
- Organized - Since they often juggle multiple priorities, it can be an asset if they’re detail-oriented and have excellent project management skills.
- Great people manager - As you ramp up, most Content Marketers will be hiring and managing freelancers and employees - be it writers, editors, SEO professionals, PPC specialists, social media managers, etc.
- Tech-savvy - Content marketing tools and best practices change quickly. What worked in 2013 won't work nearly as well (if at all) in 2020.