Who is the Web Content Specialist?
Do you enjoy writing? Are you a creative person? Have you ever thought about writing online? In this article, I’ll explain the skills you need to become a Web Content Specialist and the tools to devise a good Content Marketing strategy. Considering the importance of having a solid foundation, a Content Editing Course is just what you need to understand how to write effectively for the web.
In fact, from scribes and typewriters to the Internet era, the way we communicate has undergone a profound change, shaping the role of writers throughout history.
Today, we talk about Web Content Editors, Web Writers, Copywriters, to name just a few of the different professional figures that have emerged with the birth of the Web. The International Web Association has tried to provide a more precise definition of these figures by grouping them under the name of Web Content Specialist. According to the IWA, their main tasks are:
- Create textual and multimedia content
- Ensure compliance with standards
- Optimize usability
- Ensure compliance with legal, privacy, and environmental requirements
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The Web Content Specialist strategy: creating effective content
To become a Web Content Specialist, it’s not enough to have a good command of the language and a broad general knowledge; technical and analytical skills are also necessary. The first step in a Content Marketing strategy is to identify the Buyer Personas and the ideal customer. Understanding who you are addressing is crucial to know how to communicate and convey your message. To do this, you need to ask yourself the following questions:
- What are their concerns?
- Where can you reach them?
- What type of content and information are they looking for?
- What problems do they want to solve?
Once you’ve identified the typical customer profile, you need to understand the company’s goals. These goals may include visibility, increased sales, brand awareness, product or service launches, and building a community. Your role is to implement the strategy devised by the Web Content Manager to achieve these objectives.
A critical aspect a skilled Web Content Specialist should focus on is the message. Identifying a unique message allows the company to stand out in the market compared to its competitors. Through its content, the company must address the needs of potential customers, showing them the reasons why they should choose their product or service over others. High-quality, valuable content not only helps increase traffic by attracting more customers but also creates value for the company.
Today’s audience is overwhelmed by a vast amount of information, so developing quality content is crucial not only for users but also for search engines, aiming to rank among Google’s top results through effective SEO strategies.
According to the International Web Association (IWA), the Web Content Specialist should be responsible for various analyses, including:
- Compiling and analyzing website usage statistics (Analytics and Insight data)
- Analyzing user feedback
- Verifying the level of engagement
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These activities will help you monitor the performance of all digital content and understand user behavior on various platforms (Newsletter, Website, Social Network). This will help you improve the User Experience through page optimization and proper coordination with all collaborators. In general, you will interact with the Web Community Manager, Web Project Manager, SEO copywriter, or Web Content Editor under the guidance of the Content Manager.
If you want to excel as a Web Content Specialist, you cannot overlook copyright aspects to protect both new and existing content, as well as legal and privacy requirements.
What tools do you need to know to become a Web Content Specialist?
The Web offers many tools and software to create and manage your content effectively.
Your working platform will be the CMS (Content Management System). Don’t worry; it’s not complicated. In fact, it simplifies the work.
It is a platform that allows you to manage the content of a website without the need for programming languages. You can customize the site’s interface by installing more advanced functionalities (known as Plugins). The most popular and widely used one is WordPress.
For creating captivating multimedia content, you will often work with graphic editing applications or software like:
- Canva: a free online tool for creating creativity for blogs, social media, and websites using ready-made layouts or texts, or importing your images
- Pixlr: an online program for image retouching and editing
- Pixabay, Shutterstock, or Pexels: platforms where you can download photos and images
- Use high-quality images to enrich your post
- Photoshop: professional software for advanced graphic editing
As I mentioned earlier, you will also be responsible for analysis, so you will need to be familiar with Google Analytics and Social Media Insights to monitor Customer Satisfaction and consequently improve site usability.
To easily organize the work and publications of different collaborators, you should use editorial planning and Social Media tools, along with an editorial calendar. In this case, WordPress Editorial Calendar, a WordPress plugin for post scheduling, Google Calendar, and Google Documents, a free online application that allows document creation and sharing among authorized collaborators (the only requirement is having a Google account), or a simple Excel spreadsheet can be very helpful.
Finally, an excellent use of Social Networks will complete your activity; sharing and creating ad hoc content for different Social platforms will help you reach various types of audiences.
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What kind of training and attitudes should a Web Content Specialist have?
Generally, a skilled writer should have a good general culture and humanities education. However, to be a Web Content Specialist, you need excellent problem-solving skills, the ability to manage relationships with clients and your team, and a strong customer-oriented mindset. Refining your writing skills, image comprehension, and generating engagement on Social Media will enhance your profile.
In essence, you need to be a hybrid between the humanities and the technical aspects. If you have a degree in Communication Sciences, Literature, or Philosophy, I recommend following a training course, such as the Web Content Manager Certification Course, or a proper Master’s in Web Marketing and Social Media that allows you to acquire the necessary technical skills (to become a true content professional) and perhaps start a blog where you can practice writing and test your abilities.
Remember that online readers are different from offline readers. Take a moment to think about when you read an article on the web. Are you sure you read every word? I imagine you answered that. The digital reader is focused on solving a problem, seeking useful information, attracted by images and videos, and scans the page before reading it. Therefore, your main task is to grab their attention, solve a problem, or fulfill their needs to convert the user into a customer.
Is the Web Content Specialist a sought-after profile in the job market? What are the earning prospects?
The Web Content Specialist can work as an employee or as a freelancer. If you want to work as a freelancer, your earnings will depend on the type of project you are working on, and of course, you must determine the appropriate value for your work. For an employee in a company, the average salary ranges from 1,200 to 2,000 USD gross per month. This, of course, depends on your skills, the type of role, and the company you work for.
Regarding the job market, the awareness of the importance of content in a digital marketing strategy is growing among both large and small companies. The Web Content Specialist is a sought-after profile, especially in countries where the digital sector is thriving.
It should be noted that in some countries, those who deal with content also have specific roles in other digital professions. This is because, despite the work of the IWA on defining digital professions, there is still some confusion and a somewhat subjective perception of these new profiles, which find themselves having to develop various skills and act as a bit of a “jack-of-all-trades” in the situation.