Agencies and marketing companies have begun to hire managing editors to support content strategies. It's about owning the media, rather than aggregating it. In fact, at the MediaPost Search Insider Summit on Thursday, Troy Lerner, president at Booyah, an online advertising firm, said the company laid off 23 search engine optimization (SEO) link builders to hire a managing editor and editorial team who can manage content.
Booyah is not the only company moving to support digital content by hiring a managing editor and editorial team. Other companies like Balihoo and Resolution Media's Content Continuum have moved to hire managing editors, too. Shane Vaughan, CMO for Balihoo, looked for a journalist with a math background who can identify and create great content and crunch the numbers.
Content Continuum lead Heather Molina looked for someone with organizational skills, and project and content management. When Datapop co-founder Jason Lehmbeck asked whether brands should invest someone to help them create content before investing in other things, Molina's first instinct was "yes" -- but she said too many CMOs want to see immediate results. Seeing results from content takes time.
Lehmbeck suggested hiring journalist interns who could start learning to use AdWords. Chris Baggott, co-founder of Compendium, pointed to employee-generated content as an option. Companies could curate the content from emails, for example. He called emails a great "repository of content."
Emails, typically a one-on-one communication, are now up for grabs in the name of content. Baggott said Gymboree triggers an email to moms asking them "what did Billy do today? What was his favorite activity?" The moms respond via email. Gymboree than sends another email telling the mom their story will be featured on Gymboree's blog, according to Baggott. He said moms love it because it features their kids on the site.
Travel sites do the same. They send customers emails asking "why did you pick California as a vacation spot?" The responses, with the sender's consent, get posted online as content.