What Content Team is Right for me?

Content marketing has become a must, but how should you go about doing it?

Customers’ desires rule the roost when it comes to content marketing. More than ever, companies and websites pulling together content marketing and SEO teams to craft content their customers find attractive. This “customer first” approach demands good content. In the past, content marketing was all about rigid target demographics and target areas. In the digital world, everyone is your target demographic.

What do we mean by content? Anytime you scroll your Facebook newsfeed the articles and blogs you see pop up most likely were created by some sort of content team. Digital content teams are a relatively new entity, with most only existing within the last five years. Because it’s such a new and ever changing field, your business may not be sure how to create a content team. Continue reading to learn about the forms content teams take to determine what is right for you.

Content Team Types

  • Traditional Newspaper Model
  • Today’s New Media Model
  • The Aggregation Model
  • The Agency Model
  • The Small Team Model
traditional newspaper model
The Newspaper Model places content creators at the bottom of a hierarchy

Traditional Newspaper Model

The traditional newspaper model produces a publication that provides multiple types of information. Like in a newspaper, readers can read about sports, arts, travel, and other topics in the same place. This model has a rigid hierarchy with freelance and staff reporters at the bottom, and the publisher at the top. In between, the reporters answer to individual editors based on topics, like a sports editor, lifestyle editor, etc. These editors report to managing editors, who in turn report to the head publisher. Most brands and companies aren’t large enough to employ a newspaper model. However, the traditional newspaper approach may be right for your brand if:

  1. Your content reflects or leads your industry’s cycle of news
  2. Your operation relies on a steady flow of new content
  3. This content establishes or maintains your industry’s credibility or recognition

For example, Dell is considered a leader in the tech industry, so they have a tech blog where they promote and curate content that advances the tech industry.

new media content model magazines
New media content teams take cues from how magazines are run

Today’s New Media Model

Instead of the newspaper model’s rigid hierarchy, the new media model has a bit more flexibility. Consider the team almost like a solar system. The main decision maker, or publisher, is the sun. Surrounding the publisher are three principle editing managers, one for social media, one for writing, and one for design. Rotating around the managing editors are freelance and staff reporters. Assignment isn’t as rigid in the new media model. A freelance or staff writer may write on a various number of topics. The same goes for their editors. Brands employ models like these to increase ad revenue, traffic, and lead generation for their website or company’s service. They want to see content that brings a return on their investment. New media models will make the most sense if you:

  1. Have the personnel to schedule and coordinate content creation and publishing
  2. Have a network of contributors who can publish on regular basis
curate art museum
In an aggregate model, you collect content and curate it, like a museum

The Aggregation Model

An aggregate content team model doesn’t produce content as much as reshare/reissue it. This can be very helpful to a company or brand that doesn’t have the capacity or resources to create original content themselves. Aggregate models add to the content by either repackaging it with additional analysis, or curating it with helpful links and references. These models also rely on unpaid bloggers who share their content with the company for free, to take advantage of their curator’s reach and publishing capabilities. If you are an aggregate model, you want users to come to your site because you present the content in a better way than the original publisher. An aggregation model may be right for you if:

  1. You know where industry relevant content is
  2. That content is uncirculated or under circulated
  3. You cannot afford or have the resources to create content in house
  4. You can package content in a way that attracts social media engagement

Drudge Report and Google News don’t write a lick of content, but people go to them for news and information they could seek elsewhere because they don’t know where it was published originally. Drudge Report and Google News are quite easy to get to and present content in a well organized manner.

agency model
Agency models create content for companies or brands that don’t produce content themselves

The Agency Model

The Agency is a lot like a condensed version of the New Media Model, with one key difference: the publisher is an outside client. Agencies create content for brands that don’t have the resources or time to create their own content team. You can think of agencies as content teams for hire. You, the client, outline your desired content to the agency’s project manager, who in turn communicates them to a team of copywriters, strategists, designers, and freelancers, who in turn produce the content. You may seek an agency if:

  1. You have no one in house who can produce and organize content effectively
  2. You don’t have the resources, particularly the time needed to create a content team
  3. You can afford it

Outside agencies are expensive. Big players in their respective industries like Nike and Mercedes have relied on outside agencies to produce their content.

wearing multiple hats
Small content teams rely on employees wearing several hats

The Small Team Model

If you can’t hire or outsource to editors, copywriters, and web designers, your next best bet may be taking on those roles yourself (or your team members). The small team model is perfect for organizations who just don’t have the actual people yet to run a new media approach. This means your principle blogger may also be your social media head, as well as your program manager! The small team model may be right for you if:

  1. You recognize the importance of content marketing, and will reward your employees to work hard toward this goal
  2. You don’t have the staff or resources for a new media model
  3. You have something of value to say about your industry

Picking a content marketing model is important for your brand or business, so you want to make sure you weigh all options before moving forward with one. If you have any tips about content teams or any new content team models, please comment them below!

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