If you’ve been thinking about getting certified to become a content specialist, now is a great time to commit.
Content marketing training will provide you with a valuable skill set that is rapidly growing in demand.
As search engine optimization (SEO) continues to evolve in a way that puts consumers before businesses, companies are becoming increasingly becoming dependent on content marketing to achieve high-ranking results in search engines and attract organic traffic.
Content marketing is already a $400 billion industry, and it’s predicted to grow by another $471.85 billion USD between 2021-2025.
If you obtain the skills to tap into this booming industry, you’ll be positioning yourself as a valuable asset in just about any business that has an online presence.
The Skills You Need to be Successful with Content Marketing
It’s not a matter of whether content marketing is profitable — it’s a matter of just how profitable it is.
Whether you’re a business owner looking to build your brand with organic traffic or a writer ready to be hired, achieve a pay raise, or jump into the freelance world, content marketing is worth the investment.
As you consider which course (or courses) you want to take, be sure to do your research first and make sure your time and money are well spent.
Specifically, you should be looking to make sure a course will cover the following critical skills for content marketing:
1. Develop, Organize, and Implement a Strong Content Marketing Strategy
Writing good content is all fine and dandy, but you’re not going to see the results you want with a blind approach to the market.
An effective content creator is one who thoroughly understands the needs, constraints, and opportunities within a given niche and is able to plan a strategy to produce content that will make the maximum impact.
2. Measure and Analyze the Effectiveness of Your Content Marketing Campaigns
Similarly to the first skill on our list, it’s important to create a strategy, which includes following up to measure the success or failure based on the metrics you were hoping to achieve.
That doesn’t necessarily have to be revenue. You can also look at optics such as website traffic, email subscribers, page views, SEO rankings, social media followers, et cetera.
To be a well-rounded and competent content marketing specialist, you must be able to analyze your past and learn from it. What worked well? What didn’t? How can you use that knowledge to improve your future content?
3. Write Compelling Copy Using Keywords Organically
Gone are the days of keyword stuffing, which is the practice of inserting a keyword into a webpage excessively in the hopes of ranking with a search engine. The targeted word or phrase is often out of context in sentences, unnecessarily repeated, and/or just plain irrelevant to the page as a whole.
In fact, relying on that outdated method will almost guarantee a penalty from search engines.
Nowadays, SEO rewards quality content that provides informative substance and reads well. The writing should be geared toward the intended reader, not a repetitive keyword.
That being said, keywords haven’t gone the way of the dodo — they’re still an important part of content writing, and you do still need to understand what they are, how they work, and how to make sure you’re focusing on the right ones.
Keywords need to naturally flow within the text. If you’re writing an article on a given topic, you should be able to hit your target keyword and variable iterations without doing acrobatics to shove extra words in sentences where they don’t belong.
Humans don’t like reading content that doesn’t make sense.
Neither do the algorithms that are getting more and more sophisticated when it comes to SEO rankings.
4. Develop a Consistent and Strategic Framework for Writing
You don’t need to reinvent the wheel every time you start a new article.
As you gain experience and knowledge about the best SEO practices and types of content that readers respond well to, you’ll start to naturally fall into a rhythm when outlining your articles. You may even develop your own templates to use.
Before that happens, it’s important to see examples and understand the components that make a strong framework.
5. Build Brand Authority Through Content Marketing
A whopping 96% of content marketers claim that content marketing has helped them build trust and credibility with their audience.
It’s a simple yet profoundly effective concept — if you regularly publish detailed, knowledgeable content about your niche, consumers eventually perceive you as an expert in your industry.
And why shouldn’t they? You aren’t just giving an empty sales pitch with flashy ads. You’re proving that you actually know what you’re talking about and therefore are an authority worthy trusting.
6. Leverage Content Marketing to Develop Your Own Personal Brand
By the end of any content marketing course, you should have enough knowledge and skills to successfully develop your own brand, if that’s what you wish to do with your newfound skills.
Remember, with great power comes great responsibility.
Benefits and ROI of Content Marketing Certification
Have you ever looked back and thought, If I’d had the foresight to invest in XYZ, I’d be really successful right now? (Like the people who invested in cryptocurrency early on and became millionaires. If only we’d known…)
Well, learning content marketing certainly isn’t the same as investing in cryptocurrency, but the industry has started to hit its stride in recent years, so now is a good time to invest in gaining the necessary skill set while the demand for content specialists is exploding.
You don’t want to be looking back and lamenting about how hindsight is 20/20 again, right?
Here are some of the key benefits content marketing can offer businesses and entrepreneurs:
- Brings in organic traffic: Funneling people to a website without spending money on advertisements is a massive benefit that makes content marketing such a worthwhile investment.
- Ranks well with SEO: No matter how you look at SEO, there’s no denying that to rank in search engines, you need to have well-written, high-quality content that’s designed to help people find solutions.
- Has lower investments and higher ROI than traditional advertising: The biggest investment that goes into content marketing is time, although many businesses are outsourcing now. And the long-term return on investment is well worth any time invested.
- Creates brand awareness: SEO mixed with an omnichannel content marketing approach exposes a brand to a much wider audience than a business could ever hope to reach with traditional ads targeted at a single channel. With more people seeing a brand, sharing content, and discussing it, that brand inevitably becomes more and more recognizable to a broader audience.
- Builds consumer trust: 82% of consumers report that they feel more positive about a company or brand after reading custom content. Customers have a keen eye for detecting shallow sales pitches in comparison to genuine content that educates and offers solutions.
- Establishes authority within a niche: Many brands claim that they are the most qualified to provide the product or service they’re advertising. Content marketing backs up that otherwise empty claim by showing potential consumers and clients that the company does in fact have the knowledge and expertise to be perceived as an authority figure in a market.
By learning content marketing skills through a certification course, you can add all of those claims to your résumé. That’s going to make a recruitment manager sit up straight and scramble to reach for the phone or send clients clamoring to hire you for your freelance services!
The consumer shopping experience is changing, especially in the wake of the pandemic. The truth of the matter is, traditional advertising methods simply aren’t as effective as they used to be.
People are annoyed by pop-ups and impersonal in-your-face ads. What they want is a real connection. They crave information that goes well beyond the scope of what product a business is selling.
Consumer needs and habits have evolved, which means advertising techniques must transition as well to keep up. Businesses that don’t are going to struggle.
Google and other search engines have recognized the trends, which have accelerated in the pandemic era of digital shopping. As businesses catch up and continue to see the value in content marketing, these skills are already in demand and will certainly continue to be highly sought after.
Now is the time to invest in yourself and equip your personal toolbox with the skillset you need to succeed in a content marketing career.
The Content Strategy & Marketing Course
Our very own Content Strategy & Marketing Course is specifically geared toward freelancers, agencies, and entrepreneurs and teaches the skills and strategy we mentioned above that are needed when working in content marketing. The curriculum covers important topics like SEO, building your authority online, content creation, and more.
- You’ll have lifetime access, so you can refer back to the course material whenever you want.
- There’s a private community exclusively for students to connect in and get support while in the course.
- After completion, you’ll receive a certification to celebrate your newfound skills.
Check out our free 60-minute training video for the basics and free downloadable cheat sheet with skills and tools that can change your life as a content marketing specialist.