There’s no magic content wand to wave for growing your content offering. In fact, most agencies bake a little “content development” into every RFP without much of an idea about how best to execute.
And for many agencies, the old way of soliciting content from clients worked. Put it in the RFP, client says, “Hmm! That looks good, let’s do that.” And voila! Content happens. But those days are over. Agencies and clients are getting savvier.
In order to position your agency as an efficient and strategic partner to clients, we recommend the following tactics on how to build a content team for your marketing agency that kills it.
Create a content team & find resources that can execute on client content needs.
The best strategy in the world goes nowhere without a team in place to execute.
What is the current makeup of your agency’s content team? Is there a content team?
Again, the old way of doing content was delegating roles to account managers and creative copywriters. But strategic content marketing means finding and hiring talent to create not just content, but valuable content.
Hire a content strategist/editor
Your content team starts with finding the right person responsible for guiding the strategy, understanding audiences, and selling content to your clients.
Some outlets might recommend separating the strategist and the editor. It’s not a bad idea, but being sensitive to head count and costs, finding someone that can straddle the strategist/editor role can definitely work.
The content strategist sets the agenda, but also would serve as the editor in charge of overseeing a content calendar, approving pieces for publication, and maintaining communication with your clients. Striking the balance between editorial integrity and marketing initiatives is the chief goal of a successful editor and/or strategist.
Think of the content strategist as a creative director of sorts. Yes, the creative director can design, if needed. But ultimately, their value is in the strategy, oversight, and direction of projects.
Hire one in-house writer
Freelance will never completely displace in-house writing talent. Having an in-house writer who can create client content and work with freelancers is important.
An ideal writer will have some experience in using data to tell interesting, compelling stories. Additionally, this writer should be able to deliver on tight deadlines, show an insatiable curiosity in your clients’ products or services, and be able to effectively communicate the tone and voice of your client(s).
Hire a social media strategist & community-builder
Content needs promotion and a community. Finding someone capable of building a community for your clients is key to raising awareness for your content efforts.
Hire someone that understands how to use social media, promote, and share content for clients. And if they aren’t going to be the ones executing the tactics, they should be able to articulate a vision that aligns with your client’s overall content goals.
Hire a second writer or start building your freelance network
If you’re in the fortunate position to accrue enough work for more than one person, you should consider either hiring another in-house writer or building a network of freelancers (even just one freelancer is a huge start).
Consider a freelance/vendor manager
This is a relatively new position in marketing, but many agencies are using networks like Verblio (formerly BlogMutt) to source content and 99designs to source graphic design and designers. As convenient as both solutions are, managing the volume of work and their respective networks can be a lot.
We’re starting to see more agencies and businesses hire a person that sits at the nexus of vendor and agency. This account manager oversees that vendor projects are delivered on time and on budget. If your agency uses a lot of vendors like Verblio, consider hiring for this position.
Enter Verblio for freelance & content scale
Verblio (formerly BlogMutt) is one of the best ways to scale your content capabilities beyond your core team. In fact, most agencies will hire in-house talent and use Verblio to scale as client content needs grow. If you want to see how Verblio works for agencies, sign up for an upcoming agency webinar.