The exponential growth of content marketing has revealed an interesting skills gap that is hindering the efforts of companies to transform content marketing from a promising set of experiments into an agile, scalable, strategic function in the business.
As brands expand their use of content and rich media assets to deliver engaging experiences to their customers, they are using a whole new lexicon and set of skills. Teams responsible for content planning, production, and measurement must be able to work together, speak the same language, and be focused on a common set of tasks even when geographically dispersed.
Brands create content marketing teams from different sources — in-house, agencies, and freelancers. This structure creates the potential for a modern-day Tower of Babel – people try to communicate with one another, but each speaks a different language and they differ on what content marketing is.
Making the picture even more complicated is the evolving role of the modern marketer, which is clearly in a state of flux:
- 64% of marketers expect their role to change in the next 12 months, according to the Digital Roadblock report from Adobe.
- 40% of those same marketers went on to say they want to reinvent their role as a marketer – but only 14% feel that they know how.
- 32% of marketers say they are challenged with finding trained content marketing professionals, which is over three times greater than the number of marketers who cited it as a problem in 2014, according to CMI’s B2B Content Marketing: 2015 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends — North America report.
The content marketing skills gap will continue to widen unless companies take steps now to enhance the skill sets of their teams to keep pace with the evolution of content strategy and marketing. There are only two ways to accomplish this:
- Train teams to have common and relevant skills.
- Hire people with the necessary experience and background in content marketing (which, as we’ve seen, is getting harder and harder).
Both solutions have implications for practitioners and the companies that hire them. Companies that focus on developing the skills of their teams recognize the impact a well-educated content marketing team can have on the brand. Practitioners who take responsibility for their own development will advance their careers and gain the knowledge to secure both funding and senior-level support for their content marketing initiatives.
As content marketing grows, it must demonstrate ROI and contribute to the strategic direction of the organization – just like any other operational function. To help companies and practitioners continue their education and take a more strategic, operational approach to content strategy and marketing, we have published a new white paper that:
- Explores eight key marketing challenges facing organizations today
- Explains how they may impact your business
- Describes what CMI is doing to help you address them.
Ready to learn more about professional training and education for content marketers? Read this New Skills for a New Era of Marketing white paper and join us at 2 p.m. EDT Tuesday, April 21, for a webinar on the trends in content marketing contributing to the growing skills gap and to learn more about CMI’s growing online training program. Register today.
Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute