What Is Content Consulting, and Do I Need It? Find Out Here.

The internet is a crazy place. People can go from being relative nobodies in small towns to big stars seemingly overnight. But it’s important to remember that instant successes are not the norm, and the truth is that nothing happens fast on the internet. You can open a brick-and-mortar store on Main Street today and sell wares by the afternoon, but that’s not the case on Internet Boulevard.

When creating content takes so long and you don’t have instant results to gauge success, doing anything on the internet can feel like a waste of time and money. If that spinning-your-wheels feeling is resonating with you, you might need a content consultant.

In this post, I’ll explain exactly what content consulting is and how it can help your business. By the end, you’ll be able to decide if it’s a good fit for you

What is Content Consulting?

Content consulting is the act of assessing a business’s current content, comparing it to its goals, and developing a plan or content strategy to help it meet those goals.

That’s the elevator pitch, at least.

Everything we consume on the internet is content. Blog posts, videos, social media, podcasts.. It’s all content. Some is awesome. Some is absolutely horrible. Worse yet, some content is just a waste of time. With content marketing consulting, a company has a professional dig through their digital presence and help them put a plan together that is both a) full of great content and b) not a waste of time or money.

How Does Content Consulting Work?

Glad you asked.

When a company hires a web content consultant, they’re going to do a deep dive into that company’s industry. They want to understand how that industry works, what companies need to succeed, and who their target customers are. This usually results in a “customer avatar,” or a relatively concise description of the company’s perfect customer.

Next, the content consultant will dig through the website, all of the blog posts, videos, social media, and other content the company has produced. The idea is to determine what’s working, what’s not, and where gaps exist. They’ll also compare it to the company’s biggest competitors to determine which fastballs the competitors are hitting out of the park.

With a solid foundation consisting of the company’s ideal avatar, an understanding of the existing content, and the home runs that the competitors are hitting, there’s just one thing to do:

Come up with a strategy.

Developing a Content Strategy

With the bulk of the homework behind them, the content consultant’s main objective at this point is to develop a content strategy. A content strategy is a clearly defined plan that the customer can use to create the right type of content that contains the keywords and topics that best target their customer avatar.

I know. That’s a mouthful. Hopefully, you’re not reading aloud.

The consultant develops the content strategy through painstaking research, keyword and SEO tools, and a working knowledge of the industry. It may contain ideas for blog posts, social media, video content, and website pages… Anywhere there is an opportunity to produce content that drives traffic toward the company, it’s the content consultant’s job to find it. 

Why You Need a Content Strategy

This strategy is exactly what a company needs for its people to continue producing content confidently without feeling like it’s are wasting its time and money.

This strategy essentially becomes the playbook that the company needs to review and commit to memory. It will contain all of the important SEO keywords that its content should contain so that search engines like Google can find their pages, identify them, and present them to the customer avatar.

With the right content strategy, businesses can start to produce the content that the customer and Google want to see. This helps the company establish expertise in the field, which further increases Google’s willingness to push content toward the top of SERPs, or Search Engine Results Pages. 

The more expertise a website has, the faster its posts will rank and the better the chances that they’ll reach the coveted #1 position. A great content strategy can give that to a company. 

How Much Does Content Consulting Cost?

Content consultancy costs between $65 and $300 per hour. Don’t gasp. It definitely varies, but companies can expect to spend thousands of dollars on content consultancy. It takes years of working in online publishing, a knack for marketing, and an understanding of the company’s industry to put together a content strategy that really drives traffic. This type of expertise does not come cheap. 

The Benefits of Content Consulting

There are a lot of great reasons to hire a content consultant to help you sort through that mess of digital media. However, here are the biggest benefits of hiring a content marketing consultant:

  • They can improve profits by driving customers to the company’s most profitable products or services
  • They keep sales funnels full of quality leads
  • They increase your customers’ trust in the company by providing guidance and value
  • They help changes or pivots happen faster on the internet by strengthening Google’s trust and awareness in your brand
  • They bolster the channels of communication with customers, allowing the company to get a stronger sense of what they want
  • They prevent the company from creating content that won’t convert, saving money in the long run

The consultant can also be an ongoing resource for questions and ideas, though they will likely charge for these services. 

What Else Can a Content Consultant Do?

The most important piece of the puzzle is the content strategy, but some content consultants or agencies may offer other services, as well. Additional services might include:

  • Initial content packages of blog posts or web pages designed to get the company’s content strategy off the ground
  • Developing a freelance team of writers or designers to produce content or web pages on the company’s behalf
  • Ongoing coaching with the company’s chosen content creators
  • Ongoing website and traffic audits to further help tailor the company’s content plan

All of these services cost extra, and many consultants will charge a la carte. However, some agencies understand the value of a customer and will roll those charges into a service package to offer the customer as much value as possible. 

Can’t I Just Plan My Content Strategy Myself?

You might be able to. Usually, it requires years of experience in online publishing, the ability to spot a content gap, and an eloquent tongue—okay, fingertips, I guess.

The other option is to hire a full-time content marketing manager and have them handle the content strategy. This is an amazing plan and can really set your company’s content production machine into overdrive. However, content marketing managers generally demand salaries of around $100,000 a year.

Then add insurance and benefits..

Is it worth it? For a good one, yes. You’ll have more of the right type of customers—nearly prequalified—walking through your digital doors than ever before. It’s still the sales team’s job to close, but with more traffic than ever, content marketing managers will pay for themselves.

But for companies that simply can’t afford to hire another body, or who aren’t sure that a content manager is a good fit for them, hiring a freelance content consultant is often the better move. While the initial cost might be considerable for content marketing consulting, there is no long-term relationship and the company doesn’t have to foot the bill for insurance or retirement options.

It’s a good deal for everyone involved—the business and the content marketing contractor.

Do You Need a Content Consultant?

Unless you’re absolutely crushing your Google rankings and social followings, you could probably use a content development consultant. Having a reliable, experienced professional who can help you put together a rock-solid plan for creating content that converts is invaluable. It can help you take your company’s growth to the next level. 

If you’re in need of a content consultant, be sure to reach out to me. Set up a free 30-minute consultation with the Calendly link below. We’ll talk about your company’s goals, pain points, customers, and competition so we can develop the perfect solution for your content needs. 

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