Agency Hack 4 of 5: Expand Your Team to Avoid Burnout

Ants can carry up to 20 times their own body weight. But your content marketing team members are not ants. They’re destined to crack if you keep piling more and more work on their existing load. Avoid burnout by expanding your team instead.

Any agency aiming to become a content creation powerhouse needs to make sure they have the right people in place to handle the workload. This means paying attention to the number and type of full-time employees and freelance content creators at your service.

Team Member Roles

Content marketing is a team sport, and team sizes can vary greatly. What’s more important than the number of people on your team is ensuring you have all the essential roles covered.

Content Marketing Team Players

  • The Planner, creates and manages content strategy and plan
  • The Writer, pens exquisite written content
  • The Designer, ensures assets carry brand recognition and visual appeal
  • The Optimizer, bolsters content performance while reducing customer friction and anxiety
  • The Editor, delivers error-free copy consistent with brand voice
  • The Performer, tracks and reports analytics
  • The Thought Leader, generates ideas while keeping all things consistent with the brand

Depending on their background, experience and abilities, full-time employees and even freelancers can take on more than one role if desired. Your editor may double as your optimizer, for instance. Or your thought leader can also be your planner.

Team Size and Structure

Now that you know what roles you need covered, it’s time to pick the players. This starts by determining what your ideal content marketing team should look like, based on your agency size and needs.

  • The Tennis Team
  • The Basketball Team
  • The Football Team

The Tennis Team

Tennis has a two-person team, ideal for agencies with a smaller number of clients.

Two full-time players:

  • Content manager to create your clients’ content strategies and orchestrate their plans
  • Graphic designer for an ongoing collection of striking graphics

Freelance support would include writers, editors and others as needed.

The Basketball Team

Basketball teams have five players, perfect for agencies with a small handful of clients.

Five full-time players:

  • Content manager
  • Graphic designer
  • Social media manager for interactive content
  • Videographer for stunning video content
  • Animator for special effects

Freelance support would again include writers and others as needed.

The Football Team

Ten or more full-time players:

  • Content manager
  • One or two graphic designers
  • Additional graphic designer
  • Social media manager
  • Videographer
  • Animator
  • One or two editors to ensure all client content is free of errors and aligns with each brand
  • Optimizer for boosting SEO and conversion optimization
  • Performer for tracking metrics and providing suggestions moving forward
  • Staff writer for on-the-spot content writing and larger agency projects

Continue to hire freelance writers for the ongoing mounds of client blog posts and other content that goes far beyond what a single person can produce.

Additional Tips for a Happy, Healthy Team

Expanding your team is a great first step to avoid burnout, but it’s not the only measure you can take. Energetic, enthusiastic content marketing teams are going to produce the best work.

Keep them energetic and enthusiastic by:

Tapping into their strengths

Certain writers may be great at producing impeccable long-form blog posts but have no sense of humor. Others may have a quick wit but no patience for pieces longer than 800 words. Match content types and client styles with the best writers for the jobs.

The same holds true for your full-time team members. You don’t want to pick a person who despises numbers to be in charge of tracking content performance metrics.

Communicating

Whether you’re serving up a few tips for improving their work or offering a potpourri of praise, communication is important. It’s tough to make meaningful connections with people if you never take the time to provide feedback – or ask them how they’re doing.

Giving them room to grow

Have a freelancer who keeps wowing you with their creative abilities and content marketing know-how? Perhaps you want to offer them a full-time position as a content manager or strategist.

Notice how well your optimizer points out inconsistencies? Maybe they can double as an editor.

Providing what they need to succeed

Training team members is an absolute must, as is providing the proper instructions and access to materials required to ace their job.

Throwing someone into the deep end and hoping for the best is not a way to avoid burnout and stress. In fact, they’re likely to burn out before they even begin!

Freelance writers need things like brand editorial guides and content briefs. Content strategists and planners need information on clients’ backgrounds, target audiences and goals.

Summing Up

As your agency continues to grow, you may find you need to keep expanding your team right along with it. And that’s a good sign, especially since you’re now aware of the essential roles that need to be filled to keep your clients’ content ticking along like clockwork.

Just make sure you pick the right person for the job, expand both full-time and freelance team members as needed, and ensure each member is fully aware of their specific responsibilities.

You also want to select the right number of team members to avoid burnout, and give them everything they need to succeed. Build your team on this foundation, and your agency is poised to become the content creation powerhouse that clients seek out and depend on for quality content indeed.

If you’re looking for freelance writers or other content creators to expand your team, look no further than WriterAccess. Instantly tap into our pool of more than 20,000 vetted freelancers with a free trial.

This is the fourth blog in a series of five agency hacks to transform your agency into a content creation powerhouse that your clients can depend on for quality content.

 

Guest Author

By WriterAccess

Freelancer Ryn Gargulinski

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