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The 6 Non-Negotiable Skills Every Content Marketer Needs Today

by FreelancersPBN

Content marketing is rapidly evolving. With new technologies and strategies emerging all the time, content marketing managers need to constantly update their skills to remain competitive.

While the core principles remain unchanged, the tools and techniques required to execute them are shifting.

To thrive in today’s content landscape, there are 6 non-negotiable skills that every content marketing manager should possess.

Master these, and you’ll have a tremendous advantage over those still clinging to outdated practices.

1. Data Analysis

In the past, creating engaging content was enough. But now, marketers need to closely analyze performance data to optimize content.

From open and click-through rates to scroll depth and time on the page, metrics reveal what works and what doesn’t.

Without constantly assessing and acting upon analytics, you risk wasting time and resources on ineffective content.

Become obsessed with data, run A/B tests, and let insights guide your strategy.

“88% of marketers use data and analytics to make better decisions about content.”

2. Audience Research

Today’s savvy consumers expect ultra-relevant, personalized content. To deliver that, you must intimately understand your target audiences.

Move beyond basic demographics to uncover psychographics through surveys, interviews, and tools like IBM Watson.

Learn their pain points, values, and motivations. Map detailed buyer personas to craft messages that resonate.

This level of insight is impossible without ongoing audience research. Make it a cornerstone of your process.

3. Distinctive Storytelling

In an ocean of content, stand out by mastering strategic storytelling techniques. Frame content around a compelling narrative that hooks attention right away.

Use storytelling formats like hero’s journey, before-and-after, rags to riches, and David vs. Goliath.

Layer in drama, conflict, and emotion. And focus on relatable human experiences over product features.

Story-driven content not only performs better but also forges deeper customer connections.

Hone your storytelling skills through practice and study.

“91% of consumers want brands to make ads that feel more like storytelling.” – Adobe 

best content marketing manager
best content marketing manager

4. Visual Communication

People process visuals 60,000x faster than text. With shorter attention spans, visual communication is now a must-have skill.

From social media videos to infographics and beyond, create snackable, eye-catching visual content.

Learn design principles; leverage tools like Canva for non-designers.

Going visual expands your content types and makes messaging more compelling. Don’t rely solely on the written word.

5. Agile Content Development

The days of mapping out a rigid annual content calendar are over. In our real-time world, you must be able to quickly adapt plans to capitalize on trends and breaking news.

Adopt agile content development: collaborate dynamically, work in sprints, and continuously refine based on data. Be ready to ride the wave of whatever is resonating right now.

Agility allows you to deliver content that is timely, relevant, and aligned with rapid shifts in consumer sentiment.

6. Cross-Channel Delivery

Publishing great content is table stakes. To maximize impact, distribute it across channels including email, social, SEO, PPC, and more.

Understand how each channel works and the right formats and tones to use. Adapt content appropriately while keeping messaging consistent.

Orchestrating content across touchpoints gives you more ways to engage audiences and drive action. It’s an essential capability today.

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