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Content managers, sometimes called web content managers, oversee the production of web content for a company or clients. They also manage teams of creatives and make the final decisions about their projects. In this article, we discuss some common questions about the content manager field and how they may affect your decision to choose this role.

What Does a Content Manager Do?

Content managers establish a business’s online presence and develop a consistent brand identity for them. They oversee marketing strategies to focus on engaging their customers. These creatives also work to make sure their target audience has a positive view of the company, brand, and products. Some daily responsibilities of a content manager include:

  • Choosing whether to produce content in-house or to contract out to other companies, such as choosing CopyPress to write their blog posts
  • Collaborating with the marketing team to create web content and monitor its effectiveness
  • Developing web content strategies that align with a company’s image and goals
  • Maintaining the marketing calendar
  • Managing a content team that consists of writers, videographers, and graphic designers
  • Meeting with company representatives to learn about their brand identity
  • Reviewing competitor websites to make comparisons to their own content
  • Reviewing the current industry best practices
  • Scheduling all aspects of creation and delivery for each project
  • Using target keywords to write copy for search engine optimization (SEO)
  • Writing project style guides and other associated materials in collaboration with the client

Who Does a Content Manager Report To?

In a supervisory role, content managers may lead their departments, or they may report to a higher-level manager. Depending on the size of the company, content managers may report to:

  • Chief content officers (CCOs)
  • Chief executive officers (CEOs)
  • Company owners
  • General managers
  • Managing directors
  • Senior managers

Content managers at smaller companies may be more likely to report to the owners or C-level executives. Larger companies often have more middle management positions, so they may report to senior managers in those settings.

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Are Content Managers Paid Hourly or With a Salary?

A content manager’s payment plan can depend on the company they work for. Payment options that content managers may encounter include:

  • Salary: Employees who receive this type of payment make the same amount of money in each paycheck. Without an economic change or personal withholding, they also pay the same amount in taxes and deductions from each paycheck.
  • Hourly: Employees who receive this type of payment must record how many hours they work each pay period. This number determines how much they earn in each paycheck. It can also affect the amount of taxes and deductions removed.

Most full-time content managers work in salaried positions, but some may work for hourly rates. If the payment type is important to you, consider looking closely at job postings of interest to see if they specify this information.

woman in black long sleeve blazer sitting at a computer in an all white office with a window behind her to show she's in a skyscraper

Image via Unsplash by @kerenlevand

How Much Do Content Managers Make on Average Per Year?

According to Indeed, content managers make an average of $59,221 per year. Glassdoor reports that they make $74,292 per year, and ZipRecruiter says they make $63,314 per year. These figures come from real content managers’ self-reported salaries. Things like your years of experience, the company you work for, and your geographic location may all factor into how much money you can make in this role.

What Benefits Can I Get as a Content Manager?

Most full-time content managers also have the privilege of receiving benefits packages from their employers. According to Indeed, some items you may get in these packages include things like:

  • AD&D insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Health insurance
  • On-site gym membership
  • Paid time off
  • Parental leave
  • Sabbatical
  • Work from home options
  • 401(k)
  • 401(k) matching

The actual benefits you receive will vary by the company you work for, your years of experience, and the benefits plans you choose.

Skills for a Content Manager

Content managers possess a variety of hard and soft skills that help them perform their job duties. Hard skills are those you learn from on-the-job training, education, or consistent practice. They typically include knowledge of software programs or the ability to operate technology or machines. Soft skills are those that are more innate, like personality traits. They’re often abilities you’re born with or have developed over a much longer period.

Some hard skills and areas of expertise for a content manager include:

  • Adobe Experience Manager
  • Content creation and development
  • Copywriting
  • Creative writing
  • FileNet
  • HTML
  • Knowledge of content management systems (CMS)
  • Knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO) best practices
  • Knowledge of social media platforms and best practices
  • Knowledge of web analytics programs
  • Marketing
  • WordPress

Some soft skills for a content manager include:

  • Analytical abilities
  • Attention to detail
  • Creativity
  • Leadership
  • Organization
  • Reading and writing fluency in multiple languages (optional)
  • Time management
  • Verbal and written communication

Work Environment for a Content Manager

Content managers typically work in office settings or have the option to work remotely. They may follow a traditional 40-hour workweek. Overtime or work on the weekends may be necessary to meet deadlines. As a content manager, you may spend much of your day meeting with the content or technical teams, clients, or partners. You may also work closely with web designers and developers, graphic designers, writers, and marketing and social media managers.

How To Become a Content Manager

Use these steps to learn how to become a content manager:

1. Earn a Degree

Most content managers have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. Some common majors for this profession include English, marketing, journalism, writing, or communications. These fields can help prepare you to create, edit, and analyze different types of content. They may also give you additional knowledge that helps you better understand the roles and responsibilities of your coworkers in related positions.

2. Gain Experience

You typically need at least three or four years of experience in the field before taking a supervisory position like content manager. Some entry-level roles you may consider include copywriter, project manager, social media specialist, content marketer, or editor. Any additional leadership experience you can gain is also helpful. Consider being a team leader, heading a committee, or volunteering for extra responsibilities to develop your leadership skills.

3. Consider an Advanced Degree

Some senior management positions may require a master’s degree. Consider earning a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Science in Marketing (MSM), or another related degree. Most master’s programs take about two years of full-time study to complete. There are options to take these courses in person at colleges and universities or through online schooling options. Advanced degrees can help prepare you for leadership roles and teach you the best ways to supervise a diverse staff.

4. Apply for Roles

You apply for content manager positions in the same way you would for any other job. It’s a good idea to use online job boards or your professional network to find opportunities. Create a resume and cover letter to send with your application, and prepare for interviews if you’re selected as a potential candidate. If you currently work in the industry, you might be eligible for a promotion to the content manager role at your current organization or have the chance to be an internal hire for a new position.

How much money you make as a content manager, along with other factors of your job, depends on the time you dedicate to your career and your work circumstances. You may increase your chances of earning a higher salary by focusing on your education and taking all available opportunities to increase your skills.

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