Why These 5 Unexpected Content Marketing Skills Are Essential in 2021

Today’s digital age is creating a new world, where fresh, creative human talent and advanced digital skills are in demand.

For example, Google fills over 6,000 positions in just one year. (They receive over a million applications and hire less than 1%).

But traditional education may be failing to properly prepare our next generation for what is really needed to succeed.

A recent study at Kaplan University, led by QuestResearch Group and published in Forbes, found that

“There are very few people who believe in preparing college graduates for work. Only 13% of US adults, 11% of C-level executives, and 6% of college and university administrators strongly agree with graduates’ statements about job readiness. »

This is why self-built skills are becoming more and more necessary.

The good news?

If you’re new to our incredible industry of content marketing – which is expected to be worth over $400 billion this year – or even marketing in general, a college degree isn’t always a prerequisite for success.

In fact, Google doesn’t even require a degree – and they’ve been open about it online, suggesting career certificates instead. Apple, Tesla, IBM, and even Whole Foods, Costco, Hilton, Bank of America, are following suit and don’t require a degree either.

So you can get a great job without a college degree or debt.

But how?

The answer lies in developing real, market-ready skills.

5 skills to develop to earn a market-ready placement in the content marketing industry

1. An understanding of branding

You can’t get by in a content marketing job unless you understand the mechanics of what’s under the hood.

It’s called content strategy, an industry that’s barely 10 years old, even though the basic foundations of the techniques date back hundreds of years.

If you don’t know how to build a brand strategy, there are six cores.

  • Underlying knowledge: Know how to define the content strategy and what are the different parts of it.
  • Actionable knowledge: Know your audience and build a brand differentiator.
  • Actionable knowledge: Know how to find and assemble good keywords.
  • Actionable knowledge: Know how to build authority over time with a website dedicated to the brand.
  • Actionable knowledge: Know how to create consistently great and optimized content.
  • Actionable knowledge: Put in place a process and system to manage this content (editorial calendar, promotional strategy) and its ongoing maintenance.

These steps do not seem light, because truth be told, they are not.

If you’re new but want to be taken seriously in this market and get a job based on your skills, consider hiring a mentor and investing in a course on how to build a content strategy led by a industry professional.

Another good idea is an internship in a job where you can learn, in real time, how to develop these skills.

2. An understanding of SEO

Here are a few reasons why more and more marketers and brands are turning to SEO:

  • Over 90% of US traffic comes from Google: Google Search, Google Images, and Google Maps.
  • SEO generates almost 11 times more traffic than organic social media.
  • 68% of all online experiences start with a search engine.

Inbound SEO content is a win in today’s age, where Google searches have surged for double per day in a month in 2020.

During the pandemic (March 2020 – current), Google search traffic went from 3.6 billion searches/day to 6 billion searches/day.

In short, the number of people using Google to search for answers to their questions has never been higher.

SEO as a skill set revolves around a few things, including knowing how to write and optimize content for search, maintain and update older content, track content, and use tools (e.g., Google Analytics, SEMrush, Ahrefs, Yoast).

Companies that hire content marketers are looking for an understanding of SEO.

Expand your knowledge in this area.

Find and follow SEO experts, consider taking an SEO course, and expand your knowledge.

It will be worth it.

3. An understanding of quality online content

What does great online content look like?

Can you identify it quickly?

You can’t last long in the content marketing industry if you haven’t honed your skills. content recognition skills.

Brands aren’t lenient when it comes to the quality of content they expect from their content marketing team.

Know how to identify good content in these formats:

  • Posts on social networks.
  • Webpages.
  • Product descriptions.
  • Meta content.
  • Blogs.
  • Securities.
  • Emails.
  • Case studies.
  • Electronic books.
  • Lead magnets.
  • White papers.
  • Video scenarios.

All of these are used in a wide variety of content marketing campaigns, regardless of industry.

If you don’t have good content recognition skills, develop it by interning with a content agency, taking a lower-paying position in exchange for content creation skills, or investing in a course where the online content writing (no English essay or AP) is a main subject.

4. An ability to do in-depth research

It is no longer enough to “source a statistic”.

You need to know how to find the original study, and furthermore, make sure you never link to outdated material.

For example, if your source is a blog related to a 2018 study, depending on your industry, it is most likely outdated and will not add authority to the content.

Finding great stats and sources for the content you create or manage in a content marketing campaign is like digging a little deeper than the average person.

Statistics and facts matter in an age where trust is now one of the most important purchasing factors consumers consider when buying from a brand.

(See how I linked directly to a study, found the original PDF, and got the study done within 12 months or less?)

5. An ability to see through

It’s a simple trait that I also like to call tenacity.

It’s the simple ability to stick to it.

Content marketing, above all, should be a commitment from the spearhead of the campaign.

Joe Pulizzi, founder of the Content Marketing Institute and the largest content marketing conference on the planet, said it takes 12-18 months to see content success.

According to Pulizzi, one of the main reasons content marketing fails is simply that the company has no patience and kills the campaign too soon.

when marketing programs fail

Crazy, right?

It sounds so simple, but if you’re heading into the content marketing industry, it’s something you need to know and be aware of.

Be a believer in one of the biggest reasons for content marketing success – how long a business sticks with tenacity and produces content that builds its brand and trust factor over time.


There are many more sub-skills below these.

However, these are what I think are the top five most unexpected – yet hugely important – content marketing skills to master.

You have your skills development journey cut out for you.

Go ahead and prosper!

More resources:

Image credits

Image posted 1: contenttrategycourse.com
Posted Image 2: Content Marketing Institute