7 tips for your content team’s first hires

Is it time to hire more people to speed up content production in your company? Here are some essential steps to ensure a fluid and results-focused process.

As an Inbound Marketing professional, I am happy to see the growing adoption of the methodology by companies from different market niches. But I know that from the moment of initiating strategies, starting to generate results and moving on to the phase of scaling the processes, there is a path to be followed. And this path I had the opportunity to travel here within the RD marketing team.

As with many companies, our content production operation started out lean. After the area began to gain strength and demand more deliveries, the first hirings came. After that, the first structures of new areas: content for agencies, specific market segments, content for other countries.

It is when making the first hires that many professionals have their doubts: how to share the jobs? How to ensure alignment with the existing operation? What results to charge? I made a compilation of the main doubts I hear in this process to try to help your moment. Come on?

1. Define the job before hiring

A lot of people get it wrong here. He goes out and hires someone to “play or share the content production function”, but by the time the person enters the company, he doesn’t know exactly what to do with it.

Before opening the vacancy, it is important to be clear about your objective: what should the person deliver? What results should you answer for? Will she take over the entire production or share it with someone else?

In the first steps, it is common for a job to be more generalist, that is, a person who performs more than one function. When I joined RD, for example, I was producing content for the blog, writing eBooks and other rich content formats , drawing success stories, writing for RD Station’s blog and being responsible for customer communication. Today there is at least one person for each of these roles.

Do you want one more reason to define the job before hiring? Ensure alignment with the new employee from the start. If he goes through the hiring process understanding exactly what he is going to do, the chances of having his expectations met in the new job are much greater. 😉

2. Job defined? Time to think about the goal

Does your company measure the results of content production? Very well! If it doesn’t measure, it ‘s time to look at it . We always say that Inbound Marketing is the Digital Marketing of results – and if content is one of its main pillars, it should bring returns.

Some common metrics to be monitored by the content team can be: traffic, lead generation, Google keyword ranking, among others. It is important that the new team members understand what they need to achieve (monthly, quarterly, annually). The goals must be drawn according to the company’s objectives and their monitoring must be part of his routine.

Some people may have resistance to answering for goals, but this can be a great selling point: without goals, how can you prove the value of the work done?

3. Introduce (or create) the personas

Hiring done, goals aligned, time to start onboarding the new employee. And, if we’re talking about content, the first step should be precisely the presentation of the persona for whom he should focus his activities.

If the persona already exists, this step might just be an introduction. However, in some cases, this can be a good opportunity for the person to review the persona: does it still make sense for the company? Has anything changed in your habit of consuming content? Your pains? The current market moment?

 

Another case might be the creation of personas, especially if the person is hired to start producing content for a new vertical. In this case, the persona design already serves as an excellent step to start building valuable knowledge about the market where he will operate.

In this process, I usually recommend conversations with clients, Leads and people from other areas of the company who have contact with this audience so that, in addition to the persona, it is possible to design their purchase journey .

4. Immersion in your solution

Once the persona is presented, it is already possible to be clear about who the efforts will be focused on. However, there are other important points to be aligned from the beginning: how does your solution (product or service) work? What are her “sells” for the market? What main pains are addressed in content and what is the discourse to remedy them?

To ensure good alignment, I recommend a 1h or 2h weekly immersion focusing on every point that is important to make clear (even so as not to overwhelm the new information worker). Another possibility is the creation of a document where information is centralized. 😉

5. Clear processes

Finished the onboarding, now it’s time to get down to business. When there’s only one person doing everything, it’s easier to manage your own work. However, when someone else arrives, it’s time to determine some processes to facilitate the day to day.

An interesting option for content production is to have clear the steps that involve it, from planning, setting the agenda to publication and distribution.

The support of tools that allow designing processes can be essential here, especially when the team scales more.

A clear example of this is the rich content kanban we use in RD.

You can see in the image above that we have different steps, and inside each one there is a checklist with each step needed within the content stage.

It is much easier for each new team member to understand the process and get used to it – and the chances of misaligned deliveries or missing points are minimized.

6. Secure the necessary resources

Don’t just sit in front of your computer and start producing. Unless the person is responsible for other deliveries, such as image production, content layout, publishing on social media, sending Email Marketing, etc. – which may be her reality right now – she’s going to need these resources.

If there are other providers for this (inside or outside the company), it is important to define (or become) an interface between them and the content owner. A suggestion on how to do this is to schedule 1 hour a week of conversation between the responsible for content and each supplier. This conversation should include the planning of actions for the week, as well as checking previous actions and results.

7. Track deliverables and skills

Are you ready to proceed with the operation? A good hack to extract the best results is to closely monitor the team, and this involves two fronts: deliveries and competences. To do this, you can do:

  • A weekly meeting focused on deliveries (sprint): Set aside 1h30 to understand what was accomplished in the previous week and jointly design actions for the next few days. Here the talk is about deliveries: quality, deadlines, difficulties encountered and lessons learned.
  • A monthly meeting focused on skills: Set aside 1h or 2h to talk with the team leader about their skills: what is good and what can be improved. Example: does he have difficulty organizing? Do you find it easy to communicate with other people on the team or outside? According to the deliveries he must make and his career development goals, it is possible to identify which “gaps” need to be worked on and draw up action plans together – which will be checked with each new conversation.

Well, here are the tips. I hope they can help you at this moment. Do you have any questions or do you want to know how to deal with a point not covered? Be sure to comment below. 😉