Career Growth With Content Writing in 2021
Many content writing professionals and aspiring content writers wonder if there is career growth with content writing in 2021 and further, well here are the answers to all your questions about having a career in content writing.
What is a career?
We all are striving and putting our best endeavor to build a career. From the moment we are born our parents consciously or subconsciously start building a career for us in their own dreams. We never know what is kept for us in our ongoing journey of life. But what keeps us afloat in the world sustaining our lives is building a career. As it is said “Chalti ka Naam hai Zindagi”, the career, being part of our life, should not be stagnant. Anything not moving is considered to be ‘dead’. Growth in a career is needed for fulfillment of the safety, esteem, and self-actualization needs of the individuals.
Well, the dictionary meaning of career is “an individual’s journey through learning, work and other aspects of life”. It can be defined in the form of a noun as a “course or progress of a person through his life”. Sometimes a career is used as an adjective to imply “working aspects of an individual’s life”, for example, a career woman. Another way of defining a career is any profession or occupation that involves special training and requires education in a particular field.
The career is here considered as a sequence or series of jobs related to each other which a person undertakes within a single industry or sector, for example, a career in education, a career in information technology, a career in finance, etc. in fact, the word ‘career’ is derived from Latin word ‘carrus’ which refers to a ‘chariot’, symbolizing one’s progress in life.
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Difference between Job and Career:
Though both the terms are often used interchangeably as synonyms since both enable us to earn money to support our life and lifestyle, yet they have a different meaning. It is important to have a trenchant understanding of what is the difference between a job and a career and how one is related to another or how one can turn his or her job into a career. This will help us to identify and recognize our professional goals.
Any work that we perform to fetch us money as remuneration is a job. The job can be full-time or part-time. It can be contractual too. A certain set of specialized skills may be required to perform a job, but not all jobs require specific skills or advances degrees. The payment term is the binding agent between an employee and an employer. Once the specified work is completed, the job is done.
A career, on the other hand, is a professional journey of our lives which sometimes is based on our choices and passion for what we like or like to do. It’s a path we embark upon to fulfill dreams cherished by us in our professional life. A certain level of education and skills may be required to venture into a career.
The benefits of having a career go beyond monetary terms, giving satisfaction, self-worth, and pride. It can last for a lifetime. One can hold many jobs under many employers in their chosen industry or sector while progressing through one’s career.
The frequency of the number of jobs which an individual undertakes depends on what career path they have chosen. The person who has a clear-cut picture of what they want to do may hold less number of jobs compared to those without any set career path in mind. A career comprises all the jobs we have undertaken regardless of whether the jobs we perform are associated with others.
We can perform a job in the same department in one organization or we can do different associated jobs in different companies or sectors. Everything we do in our career path defines our career. In the end, when we discover what is our passion, we finally choose a career of our choice. This leads to the foundation of career growth and development.
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Importance of Career Growth
The world is constantly changing. With the advent of science and infusion of technology in even the basic jobs, the jobs are changing. One cannot afford to be stagnant by doing the same old job repetitively. Only efficient and updated employees can look forward to growth in career.
We have listed out some of the important reasons to justify the importance of growth and development in a career.
- It is required for talented people to have the ambition to move upwards in an organization hierarchy.
- It gives the employee self-satisfaction and motivation to handle extra responsibilities and earn respect.
- It enables people to grow financially. Usually, a higher rank in the organization or the sector is associated with a higher salary/remuneration.
- It helps in developing the existing set of skills and abilities making the person confident in his life.
- It provides a boost to professional life ensuring security in the job market even with the ups and downs of the market.
Career Anchors for Career Growth:
There are several theories for guiding an individual towards his or her career path and growth in the path. The concept of career anchors is one of those theories provided by Edger Schein. According to him, there are 5 basic career anchors.
- Technical or Functional Competence – This implies that the individual must have technical competence in his or her field. The entire career is organized around a particular set of technical or functional or functional skills in which the person is good. That’s the reason why someone is chosen for a specific position. For example, a civil engineer should have civil engineering knowledge such as road construction, knowledge of structures or buildings, and other city systems.
- Managerial Competence – This is one of the most important career anchors. As we know managerial ability is basically the ability to get work done through others. It requires the use of all functions of a management vis. Planning, Staffing, Leading, Organizing, and Control. The entire career is organized around climbing an organizational ladder to achieve a position of responsibility. This involves decision-making skills in addition to efforts at analyzing problems, dealing with people, and making decisions in difficult situations.
- Creativity – It is the ability of a person to always think about new things. This quality creates value addition to every person. It may be related to a new service or a new product. This is highly necessary to build a new business.
- Security and Stability – This means the guarantee of continued employment. It is a must for every human being to survive and plan for a career. The person should be comfortable in his place of work and also in his family matters so that he can freely contribute.
- Autonomy – It means freedom to take certain decisions. This is also important based on which the entire career of a person is organized. Freedom to have flexible working hours and maintain their own lifestyle helps in providing job satisfaction to the individual.
Steps involved in Career Growth:
Let’s have a glance at the major steps which are involved during the process of growth and development of a career.
1. Determine your own interest and skills
The process of career growth starts with first deciding your interest and skills. One needs to list out various activities from which pleasure is derived. It may not be possible to pursue all of them together. The descending order of priorities should be made. Possibilities and opportunities which are easily available should be explored. The challenges ahead in the chosen field should be thought about. One should try to find out his own inventory of talents. Based on the compatibility between interest and inherent skills, one should finally take a decision.
2. Find out career options
With the advent of globalization and liberalization, the Indian economy has transformed into an open economy resulting in the multiplication of job opportunities. The information about these opportunities is also available through various offline and online sources like magazines, newspapers, social media, email, etc. The objective is to collect information about various options in the chosen field of interest as a career. This makes decision-making easy for going forward in my career.
3. Understand your strengths, recognize your limitations –
The career assessment process should be an open one. There should not be any limitations on the aspirations of any individuals. However, one has to estimate one’s own strengths. Technical and educational knowledge is no doubt important. But other job-oriented skills compatible with one’s personality have also to be taken into account. One can do a SWOT analysis of his potential abilities, competencies, and limitations. However, all limitations need not be treated as weaknesses. But it makes the person aware of the areas which need improvement.
4. Define your career path and career goal
For growth in a career, one should have a career goal that ultimately one wants to achieve. It helps in selecting a particular profession. It may be a particular job which one wants to do. Some people may be motivated by monetary gains, while for others recognition and self-satisfaction turn out to be motivating factors. Defined goals also prevent career breaks and career deviations. The career goal should not be vague and properly defined. In a nutshell, the goal should be SMART – SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ACHIEVABLE, RELEVANT & TIME-BOUND. This helps in taking steps towards career growth.
5. Train yourself
Once the career goal is determined, one needs to acquire the skills and technical qualifications to pursue a career in the desired field. The information about what is required for a particular career path is also available over the internet.
6. Search for the career
One has to find out various formalities required for the proposed career. If competitive exams relevant to the career are required, one has to prepare accordingly. If the career requires foreign travel, then one must have a passport and visa to apply for the job. This information can also be sought from the internet.
7. Enjoy your chosen profession
Once the profession is chosen, one must take a keen interest in performing the job. This helps in keeping the individual motivated and avoids stagnancy and apathy in a career.
8. Value Addition
One has to keep updated and abreast of the latest developments in the chosen career field for substantial growth and development in career. This adds value to the work we are performing. It also helps in meeting competition and prevents obsolescence. This is a major step towards career development in an individual’s life. Reading books and keeping an eye on the latest updates in the field over the internet results in value addition.
9. Self-Assessment or Formal Assessment –
It is seldom possible that we achieve everything planned by us. Frequent checks can help to identify the gaps in our actual performance and desired performance. These checks can be in the form of online assessment examinations.
10. Enjoy the bouquets and brickbats too
“Life is not a bed of roses”. The journey of professional life will consist of ups and downs. There could be certain failures in the process of career growth and development. If we are about what we want to achieve in life, we should not be afraid of failures. Instead, we should try to identify where we need improvement and continue our hard work for career development.
Certain behavioral models provide a questionnaire for self-analysis which can be used to decide career interests. These tools are also available online.
Content Writing as a Career:
Before we talk about content writing as a career, let’s first have a look at what exactly is content writing is about.
Content writing revolves around writing meaningful content for the web. It involves planning, writing, and editing content. It involves writing blogs, articles, podcasts, videos, etc. One can even write for offline modes like newspapers and magazines. However, there is a subtle difference between a journalist and a content writer.
Content writing as a career option has gained significant importance with the emergence and evolution of Digital Marketing. Nowadays everything we search for is available on the internet. One only has to browse through its search engine to know about anything. From white-collar jobs to blue-collar jobs, everything is available over the internet.
The reason behind such a vast open-source of information is ‘content’ published by sellers of goods and services. The businesses are getting listed over Google. The typical brick and mortar shops are being replaced with online businesses. Costs incurred in traditional promotions are getting adjusted with digital promotions. And why not. After all, the internet is free for all and can be easily accessed even from a mobile phone. What search engines like Google is concerned about is ‘writing meaningful content.
Many content writing jobs are outsourced by companies. Some of the companies hire in-house content writers. One can even work as a freelancer content writer. It gives an individual to work from home with flexible working hours. Anyone who is having good communication skills can aim to pursue a career in content writing. Some different areas of content writing are mentioned below.
- Web-content: People need to write meaningful updated content for the websites.
- Marketing content: Most of the products and services are available now. But how are visitors can be converted into clients is the area of content marketing. One has to be creative and persuasive enough with their contents through catchy headlines and slugs to attract visitors and persuade them to buy the products and services.
- Public-Relations Writing: Many organizations are hiring experts to work as in-house writers for publishing their newsletters, press releases, and bulletins.
- Technical writing: It mostly talks about a particular subject that requires explanation. For example, writing software manuals or instructional materials.
There are several courses conducted by reputed institutes like IIMSKILLS, and HubSpot Academy which gives insights and training on how to become a content writer and used the tools learned in content marketing.
Content Marketing for Career Growth:
Keeping aside the worldwide recession on account of the COVID-19 pandemic, the content marketing industry is growing at an astonishing compound rate of 16% annually since 2016. There has been over 30% growth in content marketing jobs since 2017. People are now more inclined towards content marketing as the return on investment is over 10 times than other marketing tactics.
With the advent of content marketing, the growth prospects of a content writer in his career have increased exponentially. Since content marketing is generating revenue for the companies, the job prospects in content marketing are too lucrative. This has led to new insights for the growth of the career of an individual in an organization or a sector.
Career skills required for a career in content marketing:
- Writing ability -The commencement of a career in content marketing starts with content only. One should have the ability to write legible, comprehensible, persuasive, and meaningful content free from plagiarism and grammatically correct.
- Understanding of SEO – To create great content, understanding SEO is compulsory. Search Engine Optimization is basically a series of best practices and protocols that enable content to rank and get displayed by search engine result pages. Several SEO tools help in creating creative content.
- Research ability – One should have the ability to grasp knowledge about any given topic for writing. It may not be possible to write about a single knowledge domain when one is working for an outsourced content writing agency.
- Data-driven – The content marketers should be data-driven. They should be able to analyze the metrics to quantify the impact of content marketing.
- Editing own work – Once should keep on striving for creating better content as there is nothing called a perfect first draft.
Trends of content marketing as a career option in 2021 :
- Building communities– People are now focused on building communities around content creation and search. This allows the marketing team to expand their reach even when they have low resources.
- Going live using videos and webinars – More and more people are using videos to communicate to the people. Videos and webinars are now used by content marketers to convert potential clients into customers.
- Improving the content experience – More and more content is now preferred to be free of ads and pop-ups. Demand for organic content has risen drastically.
- Focus on products and services – The center of attraction has been shifted to the core products and services offered by the companies.
- AI-powered content – Artificial intelligence is also playing a pivotal role in 2021 for content marketing. More automation with the fusion of human intelligence is in demand.
- Doubling down on SEO – SEO was there, is there, and will be there for content marketing. High-quality content using SEO tools is what people are looking for in 2021.
- Repurposing content across channels – Instead of beginning from scratch, repurposing content enables the content writers to write better meaningful content.
No one can predict what is going to happen in near future. There are many traditional jobs available in the market for individuals. But with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of such jobs have been uprooted and the majority of the people are forced to move to other available platforms. The jobs of the salespersons which depended solely on relationship building and in-person meetings have been transformed into content marketers out of necessity. Digital reach is a new method of canvassing business. Usage of social media has been at an all-time high. Social media marketers are hence in great demand now.
Content marketing is becoming an essential element for career growth and development now and in near future. Even the banks are using social media to promote their products. Designing eye-catching content for the financial sectors requires the skills of a proficient content writer. Groceries are now more sold online than offline. The sellers are getting themselves listed on e-commerce sites. Again, the role of content writers is important for selling the products online.
Creating videos and podcasts is in trend to attract customers to visit their websites. One can be an efficient teacher with a profound knowledge of the domain. But now with schools closed and no personal interaction with students or parents, using digital platforms to reach the students is the only option. Content marketing skills enable an individual with teaching skills to have their own venture in online teaching.
In a nutshell, we can infer that content marketing is in the nook and corner of ongoing and future jobs. Learning the skills required for a content writer and marketer is the need of the hour for the growth and development of a career in any field. The year 2021 is no doubt going to be a ‘digital year’.