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The Difference Between Hiring A Writer And Hiring A Content Strategist

The Difference Between Hiring a Writer and Hiring a Content Strategist

I was talking to a potential new client the other day, and he told me they had tons of writers. So why was he looking to hire Egg?

“We don’t have anyone who really gets our client. That’s what we need you for.”

His writers, it seemed, did their jobs. They wrote what they were assigned. But what the company needed was to hire a content strategist. You see, writers are a dime a dozen (and I truly hate to be able to say that), but professionals who can go one step further are rare. I agree: hiring a content strategist is the way to go.

So What Does a Content Strategist Do?

I actually consider myself a writer, but I have to admit, my extensive marketing experience does come in handy. Whether I’m an SEO expert or not, I innately understand what keywords people are likely to search for. I know how to determine what topics an audience cares about. And I know how to write digestible, interesting content.

So, yeah. That’s what a content strategist does. As you might surmise, we strategize about a brand’s content. We work to understand an audience and then build content for them. We set goals. We work to meet those goals.

So it really isn’t as simple as hiring writers.

Why You Should Be Hiring a Content Strategist

So you’ve been dabbling in this whole content marketing trend (spoiler alert: it’s not a trend) for a while now, and you’re not impressed with results. In fact, you really aren’t sure your blog or any other content piece is driving new business.

You might even know how to go into your analytics dashboard to find out who’s visiting your site. Some people visit your blog, but not an impressive number.

You’re about ready to give up on content marketing and focus your efforts elsewhere, but then you decide to consult with a content strategist.

You find out some pretty interesting information:

  • You’re not focusing your keywords enough
  • Your content topics aren’t appealing to your audience
  • You’re not promoting your blog posts to extend their reach
  • You aren’t posting frequently enough to gain traction

You make a few tweaks based on the content strategist’s advice, and lo and behold: your website and blog traffic have gone up! So have your sales! So…yeah, you have to admit, there may be something to this content marketing thing after all.

I wrote years and years ago, dissuading you from hiring the cheapest writer you can find. But now I’ll go one step further and say that if you simply hire a writer who doesn’t have marketing know-how, you probably aren’t going to get what you want from it. To me, you’re wasting your money if the content you’re hiring a writer to create isn’t hitting the mark with its audience. Consider hiring a content strategist instead.

Susan Guillory

Susan Guillory is the President of Egg Marketing & Communications, a content marketing firm based in San Diego. She’s written several business books, and frequently blogs about small business and marketing on sites including Forbes, AllBusiness, and Cision. Follow her on Twitter @eggmarketing.

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