In a jumble of digital roles your business requires to not only stay afloat but to flourish and grow, few of them are as underestimated as that of a content strategist. Companies tend to focus on finding their social media managers to create those punchy one-liners for Facebook and Twitter to attract more readers, they look for graphic designers to spew impeccable imagery and rich infographics to deliver value to your audience, and they hire writers for those educational blog posts that take 2,000 words or more to delve into the subject matter.
However, who is the person who will be their supervisor, their guiding star, and their go-to for refining their efforts? The answer is precisely your content strategist, the person behind the scenes who ensures that all your creative efforts are done in accordance with your brand’s image, mission and vision. Let’s take a closer look at this essential company role and why you need to make sure the right person is assigned this position to take your brand to the stars.
Defining a content strategist
The army of creative minds you have under your wing can only be as good as the one person who guides them – your content strategist. While your writers, social media gurus, and your designers deliver stellar content material, your strategist is the one who knows and determines when, how, where, and why to post the content at hand.
Simply put, a content strategist is the person who makes sure that all of your creative efforts are put to use in a way your brand will benefit from them.
Understanding the role
While your strategist may not be the one who sits down to write the blog posts or make the infographics, they surely are the one to create the guidelines for the said content. In order to do so, they need to do a hefty dose of research, understand the target audience, compare and contrast among your competitors, and predict any potential results that will come about from your efforts.
Your strategist is in charge of not just the quality of the delivery, but the schedule, consistency, as well as monitoring for desired results and any possible tweaks on the go. Finally, your strategist is the go-to for your creative forces and the one person who will ensure your brand voice is audible through the entire strategy.
Three essentials every content strategist needs to know
While your content leader surely has a vast list of duties and responsibilities, the following three represent the very basis of all your strategy creation efforts:
1. Create user-centric content – In a research published by Content Marketing Institute, it is shown that Australian content marketers focus less and less on creating content for their audience and more for their own brand. While maintaining your brand image is important, if your content is centered solely around your company, it will give your audience a few reasons to stick around.
Instead, it would be a good idea for Australian content marketers to switch their attention back to what their audience has to say and use that information to create content that would both be considerate of their audience’s needs and beneficial for their company’s image. By implementing media monitoring in Australia into their overall approach, content strategist could see in what contexts their brand emerges, who their brand ambassadors may be, and whether there might be a need to do some damage control.
2. Strive for consistency – If there is a brand book of your company, it should be the Bible of all your content efforts. However, working with many different people often means refining their abilities in order to extract precisely what your brand stands for. Images need to reflect the same values as your blog posts, and your tweets need to be branded in such a way that every audience member instantly knows it’s you.
An experienced strategist will recognize inconsistencies that may lead to a divided brand image. For all intents and purposes, your strategist needs to make sure that beyond just providing your brand with stellar content, it is aligned with your needs and values across all channels.
3. Identify and anticipate trends – A solid content strategist should always be able to analyze the market, your audience and your competition, in such a way as to gain deeper understanding of the underlying industry trends. However, a brilliant strategist will be able to gain such in-depth understanding of your brand as well as your audience, that they will often be able to foresee certain market tendencies even before they emerge.
Such a skill is vital for brands with many competitors, since being the first among many often requires being a leader, not just a follower of trends. A strategist who manages to implement this into your content approach can help your brand not only shape its impact on the market, but also reshape the market itself. We all know who the trendsetters are in the world of big business – the likes of Google, Coca-Cola, and even individuals who are brands themselves, such as the Kardashians.
If you truly wish your company to succeed in this incredibly competitive world, hiring the right professionals to represent your brand is vital to ensure such success. Among many of them, your content strategist remains a pivotal person your brand should rely on, hence the need to always strive to find the person up to such a demanding task.