There are major differences when it comes to junior vs senior content writers. Junior content writers focus on researching and publishing long-form written articles for sites and blogs. Senior content writers are responsible for managerial tasks such as content planning and supervision.
As a junior content editor, you are honing your skills and knowledge to eventually land a senior content position. How long does it take to become a senior content writer, and how much money will you make in each role? This guide will answer those questions and more, as we take a closer look at junior vs senior content writers.
What Is a Content Writer?
A content writer is a writing professional that creates long-form text to increase site traffic using search engine optimization (SEO). The primary role of a content writer is to provide consistent content, like articles and blog posts, for clients or businesses. Depending on a writer’s niche, they are responsible for creating various deliverables that meet certain business objectives.
Junior vs Senior Content Writer: Areas of Responsibility
There are contrasting characteristics between junior and senior content writer responsibilities. Junior content writer duties involve creating articles and meeting deadlines while senior content writers take on managerial positions and obligations.
Junior Content Writer Job Description
- Content Creation. Junior writers produce content for websites, blogs, and other publications. They meet the necessary content requirements to produce top-notch output.
- In-depth Research. Writers conduct thorough research from credible sources to ensure high-quality content. They also provide relevant keywords through keyword research for SEO purposes and brand reach.
- Content Marketing. Junior writers may create digital content for social media platforms or other marketing activities like email campaigns.
- Proofreading and Editing. Junior writers use their editing skills to provide error-free and original content. They usually follow a style guide for content editing, tone, and SEO methods. They also employ plagiarism tools.
- Copywriting. A junior writer may write shorter-form content such as advertorials or slogans to aid in marketing campaigns.
Senior Content Writer Job Description
- Content Management Systems. A senior content writer is typically in-charge of an editorial team where they supervise writers and editors. They set tight deadlines and may provide blog content ideas if applicable. This content manager role is key to meeting deadlines and keeping clients happy.
- Content Strategy. Senior writers develop style guides and content plans for a specific timeframe. This content strategist role will also ensure that content meets the client’s business goals.
- SEO Techniques and Application. Senior writers have extensive knowledge of SEO and its best practices. They employ a wide range of techniques and systems that deliver the best results while reaching a broad audience.
- Social Media Management. Senior writers are sometimes assigned to handle social media platforms and their digital content. They manage a marketing team that develops content marketing strategies like email marketing and social media postings.
- Google Analytics. Senior writers are responsible for overseeing different metrics like reader engagement, site traffic, and organic reach. They may also use Google Ads for increasing brand awareness and to push various online content to meet objectives.
Junior vs Senior Content Writer Salaries
There are considerable differences between junior and senior content writer salaries. For an entry-level role like junior writers, the salary is quite low. Senior content writers are paid more for their expertise and knowledge.
Junior Content Writer Salary
According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary of a junior content writer is $43,379 per year. An entry-level salary is about $21,042 per year. The top one percent of junior writers may earn upwards of $92,259 per year.
Senior Content Writer Salary
According to Glassdoor, the average salary of a senior content writer is about $84,461 per year. Entry-level senior content writers can expect to earn about $67,645 per year. The highest salary for senior content writers is upwards of $102,231 per year.
Job Outlook for Content Writers
The job outlook for content writers is positive. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs will grow by nine percent in the next ten years. The BLS also projects that there will be an average of 15,400 job openings every year for writers.
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How Long Does It Take to Become a Junior Content Writer?
It takes about one year to become a junior content writer. You do not need a high school diploma or a college degree, but you must have excellent writing and research skills. Experience is extremely important when looking for an entry-level position like this. Websites like Upwork allow you to build up key experience and skills. SEO knowledge is also important.
How Long Does It Take to Become a Senior Content Writer?
It can take as little as two years to become a senior content writer. Most senior content writers start in a junior role. This allows them to build up experience and maintain an up-to-date portfolio. Senior content writers need incredible writing and research skills, as well as the necessary managerial qualities to lead a team, meet deadlines, and keep clients happy.
Career Path and Progression from Junior to Senior Content Writer
1. Find a Niche
Senior writers often have an area that they specialize in. They will have an authoritative voice and can provide leading information within a particular industry. A deep understanding and excellent knowledge of a niche is a great way for a junior writer to earn recognition among their seniors. Some examples of niches are creative writing, digital marketing, and real estate.
2. Become an Expert
Once you’ve found a niche, study all the latest and relevant topics of your chosen niche. Gaining an in-depth understanding of the industry will help you become an expert in this field.
As an expert, your chances of landing a senior content role will increase.
3. Gain Relevant Work Experience
Find work that aligns with your preferred niche to gain relevant content writing experience. Set SMART career goals to help you achieve your desired career path. Hone your skills, provide strong professional content to your clients, and increase your level of experience.
4. Build an Extensive Writing Portfolio
Write for a variety of publications to build a diverse and impressive portfolio. Arrange your portfolio to show the latest articles that you’ve written and make sure you include both highly-creative and action-oriented content. Provide a variety of content from short-form to long-form. Finally, make sure to align your portfolio with your niche.
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5. Learn Leadership Skills
Leadership and management skills are vital for any senior role. Find your leadership style through networking, personal endeavors, and projects. There are numerous leadership and management training programs available online. If you want to transition to a senior content writer you must have strong leadership and management skills.
Should You Become a Content Writer?
Yes, you should become a content writer if you have strong research and writing skills, are looking for flexibility, and want a lucrative creative career. Content writers are in high demand, especially in the marketing and business field, as they help companies reach wider audiences using SEO tools.
As a content writer, you can work for a company or work as a freelance writer. Sites like Upwork or Fiverr are a great way to try out content writing without committing to a full-time job. Writing is a fruitful career with a positive job outlook and highly competitive pay that encompasses different industries and sectors.
Junior vs Senior Content Writer Salaries FAQ
Yes, content writing jobs pay well. According to Payscale, the average annual base salary of a content writer is $49,341. Entry-level positions pay about $33,000 per year and senior-level roles pay about $75,000 per year.
If you want to become a content writer you need to find your niche, build a portfolio and content writer resume, and build up work experience. Furthermore, be consistent with your work output and continue to learn new techniques and methods to improve your content writing.
Writing agencies, business and marketing companies, and tech companies are the most common types of companies that hire content writers. The top companies that hire freelance writers include BKA Content, BuzzFeed, Lifewire, and NerdWallet.
No, copywriting is not the same as content writing. Copywriting is content creation for marketing purposes and usually covers short-form content such as advertisements. Content writing is generally more specialized and often involves long-form writing. Copywriters and content writers use SEO tools to target specific marketing criteria.
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