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Stand apart from the crowd: What a recent report means for freelancers

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Just more than half (55%) of B2C marketers outsource at least some of their content marketing activities according to a recent Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs survey. So what can you do to set yourself apart from the other talented people you might be competing with for business? Get to know how those potential employers think and position yourself to work with them better than the rest.

Here are 5 tips based on key survey insights:

1. Watch what you say

B2C marketers already consider themselves pretty successful, with three out of four characterizing their organizations as extremely, very, or moderately successful with content marketing.

So when talking strategy, think twice before saying anything negative about what they’ve done recently. It might also be a good idea to suggest ways to incorporate some of their past thinking into future projects.

2. Get to the strategy, one way or another

Speaking of strategy, while 71 percent have a content marketing strategy, only 33 percent have actually documented it. Make sure to ask questions that help them focus in on what they would like their strategy to be for the project you’re pitching or working on. Be sure to ask questions like “Who’s your target audience? Where would you like to reach them? What is the single compelling idea you would like them to take away from this infographic/blog post/video?”

It’s also good to know about their overall priorities: 50 percent of respondents are focused on improving quality/conversion of their audience, 50 percent are focused on content quality/quantity and 40 percent want to increase the size of their audience. Knowing what they’re ultimately trying to achieve can help you pivot the project in the right direction.

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3. Know how you’ll be measured

More than three-fourths (78 percent) of the marketers in the survey measure their content performance, with conversions (such as traffic to subscribers and leads to sales) being the biggest focus (81 percent). That was closely followed by website traffic (80 percent) and website engagement (79 percent).

As mentioned regarding strategy, knowing and keeping in mind which metrics will be ultimately be used to measure your project will help get you moving in the right direction.

4. Think about an upsell 

As many as 59 percent expected their 2020 content marketing budget to be higher than it was in 2019, and on average, B2C marketers create content for four different audiences. Knowing this, before offering a price quote, you might want to go the extra mile to find out who those audiences are, and ask if they want what you are creating tailored for each one.

Also, social media content was used by a whopping 94 percent of respondents. So whether you’re contracted for an infographic (used by 54 percent) or a blog post/short article (used by 80 percent), you can suggest including some social posts to promote those efforts as part of the overall package.

5. Get technical

When it comes to technology, more than half (51 percent) use content creation/collaboration/workflow tools, 72 percent use email marketing software, 83 percent use analytics tools and 84 percent use social media publishing/analytics tools. Familiarizing yourself with the latest and greatest tools can give you a leg up on the competition and make you an easy freelancer to collaborate with. And if they are lacking the tools that could save them time, add value by introducing them to new technology.

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