Content specialists can be found across a range of sectors that include broadcast, online and print media. This is a broad sector but let’s see if we can sum it up for you in three points.
1. What is a content specialist broadly, and more specifically?
A content specialist provides content for a brand. Content specialists are usually skilled technical writers. Technical writers have the ability to make complex information accessible to everyone – easy to read and easy to understand. Broadly speaking, a content specialist creates/writes content for a specific purpose. More specifically, they would be positioned in an environment that services clients such as government, non-profit organisations or businesses. They would create content/messages to support their clients’ objectives, for example, to promote a specific service/product to a particular target market, enhance loyalty and commitment among employees within an organisation, or persuade people to support a specific cause or change their behaviour. They normally collaborate with photographers and graphic designers to enhance their written message visually. They need good writing skills and should be able to write in a style that suits their audience and media – be it broadcast, online or print. Interview and research skills are a must, and it is important to develop the ability to plan well in advance, work under pressure and meet deadlines. A good general knowledge or knowledge of the specific sphere is a bonus.
2. Where can I find work as a content specialist?
A good place to start is with PR agencies that provide content for their clients. Some bigger brands employ content specialists directly. One can find work wherever there is a need, an intention and funds for such communication. A structured environment would be ideal versus doing work for individuals on an ad hoc basis. This would contribute to a more consistent revenue flow. Examples would include media houses, publishers, government departments, schools, NPOs, and businesses.
3. What gives me a competitive edge if I pursue this career?
A qualification in Journalism, Public Relations, Communication & Media studies plus a variety of experience would set you apart. Being proactive, inquisitive, well-organised and conveying a professional approach to business is a bonus. As with any writing career, finding a specialist niche gives you a head start. Ask yourself what you are passionate about or in what areas you are knowledgeable. Think about which brands you can target within that space.