They say, ‘content is king’. True, but not yet in Pakistan.
The content writing industry of Pakistan is still in its embryonic stage. The bulk of the professional and business world remains alien to the concept or even terms like content writing and content marketing.
Having been associated with this professional genre for over 5 years, I feel it is just the right time to bring up at least an amateur overview of where the content industry stands today and where it is heading.
Content skills have many markets, from writing content for a company’s own website to writing blogs for dog cosmetic products of a client. Here are some different areas where a content skilled person can fit into:
- Blog writing: Most companies, e-commerce sites and brands have dedicated corporate blogs with which they brand and market their products. Content workers produce articles, blog posts and related stuff for such spaces.
- SEO Writing: SEO writing involves writing content to raise search engine rankings of one of the site types mentioned above. This requires content writers to apply solid, hard-line digital marketing.
- Copywriting: Writing copy for websites, tutorials, manuals, guides – all content of permanent nature – falls into this category. Copywriting staff is sometimes known as brand ambassadors.
- Academic writing: In this genre, content is produced for college or university students. Content therefore takes place in a well-researched, academic, referenced and scholarly manner.
A large number digital agencies and IT companies regularly recruit content staff. Depending on size and domain of each business, content workers might be hired as content writers, content developers, content producers, content researchers, content editors or content managers. A special class of medical and technical writers might also be classified as content writers if there is a dedicated role and person required for the job.
Massive content-related recruitment is made by companies like Axact, Logicose, Right Solution, Salsoft, Kalsoft, Allianet and Gaditek.
In addition to standalone computer-intensive companies, content writers are lately required by FMCGs, banks, hospitals, television channels, and even schools and universities.
Just to name a few, TRG, TradeKey, Bank Al-Habib, TCS, Aga Khan Hospital, Dunya TV are some of the well known organizations known to hire content/technical writers in recent times.
Finally, there are hundreds of small and growing freelance-born companies who need regular supplies of content staffs on and off.
Salaries and Compensation
Content production generally pays well. First-salaries average around 15k-20k PKR, with the experienced staffs making well over 35k-45k. In exceptional cases (big companies), it may gross over 50k-75k.
The managerial layer of content workers are paid even more, with content editors generally sitting at 40k while content managers making over 75k.
Trend has it that the supply of content workers is not increasing in proportions of demand. Consequently, content packages are rising faster than ever.
Unless you are not into one of those non-companies i.e. firms that rely on freelancing models to run their engine, it is likely that you will be rewarded with other benefits in addition to salary, including bonuses, medical and transport allowances and sometimes pick and drop facilities.
Working Conditions and Job Security
Unlike traditional corporate cultures, content employers usually leverage advantages of flexibility to drive maximum productivity from their content people.
The usual atmosphere therefore has a great deal of indiscipline. No ties, no mirror-looking polished shoes, no 8:55 prompts or ‘keep silent’ warnings.
Timings are mostly flexible, until you are employed in a hospital or bank like setting where content does not make the bulk of corporate profits.
Job security in content writing is more of a matter of choice than matter a chance. Writers frequently experience burnouts, thus adding themselves into the non-productive list and invite termination. Many resign voluntarily, mainly due to better prospects (thanks to growing packages everywhere), and secondarily to refresh their learning.
Prospects and Outlook for Future
According to popular hearsay, and my childhood friend, content writing is not a career. To some extent, that perception is justified. In Pakistan, content writing is relatively a new phenomenon. Most people can’t just digest that they can use internet productively.
But the wider world knows the value of content. They know that the world is digitizing faster than ever, and that traditional marketing is fast failing against the cheap, yet more effective, content marketing.
Content is king. However, it will take some time before it rules the business and marketing landscapes of Pakistan.
This blog was earlier published on LinkedIn.