For most organizations, the benefits of content marketing are clear. In fact, the Content Marketing Institute found that more than half of B2B marketers expect their content marketing budgets to increase in 2020.

Many brands have built a team to research, produce, publish and promote content, but how big should this team be? And is there a tipping point where more content authors and other team members can lead to a clunky production process? We’ve turned to content marketing experts to find out.

Is There an Ideal Content Marketing Team Size?

“Depending on how many pieces of content you publish on a weekly basis and how long they are,” said Daniela Andreevska, marketing director at Mashvisor, “you have to find the right number of people on your team to assure that this amount of content gets produced.” Brands need to strike a balance between hiring enough writers to meet the expected level of quality without having too many which could negatively impact ROI.

That’s why it’s essential to formulate a clear content strategy beforehand. “Only a detailed content strategy would let you know the workload, types of content writers, and the estimated number of employees required for your needs,” explained CJ Xia, VP of marketing & sales at Boster Biological Technology. Once you have a content marketing plan, you can determine which content marketing roles are essential for your organization. 

“A team that is poorly or inefficiently structured and led, will be ineffective, waste money and/or not meet its goals,” said Polly Kay, senior marketing manager at English Blinds, “and so this is one of the most important things to bear in mind when considering the appropriate size for the team.” The structure and organization of a content marketing team, therefore, matters just as much as the number of team members.

Related Article: 8 Reasons Why Your Content Marketing Strategy May Suck

The Essential Content Marketing Roles

Along with the right amount of team members, brands need to consider which roles will help them achieve their content marketing ambitions.

Content Managers & Strategists

“This person should be responsible for managing the content marketing team and the content editorial calendar,” Andreevska said. That means doing research and choosing the content topics, keywords and publishing frequency to meet the brand’s overall content strategy. “Content creation might seem like the core of the role, but really this is more of an end goal,” added Kay. She believes having a content strategist is crucial for demographic research, identifying trends, scoping the competition, developing a consistent voice and fitting content into the broader marketing efforts of the brand.

Content Editors

“This person is responsible for reading through all content drafts and assuring that they comply with all editorial requirements and expectations,” explained Andreevska. This helps ensure that every piece of content is high-quality and closely aligns with the brand.

For smaller teams, the content manager or other marketing team member could take on the role of content editor, but for larger teams it makes sense to have an entirely separate position dedicated to quality assurance and branding of content.

Learning Opportunities

Content Writers

Xia explained that content writers should “write content according to the developed policy by keeping the company’s vision in mind.” That means finding someone that can not only write well, but can write content that aligns with the brand’s voice.

When hiring content writers, Andreevska believes the best approach is to have a mix of full-time and freelance team members. The full-time writers can be responsible for the cornerstone content pieces, while freelance writers can handle any overflow as content needs fluctuate. “Moreover,” Andreevska added, “having a larger pool of writers provides you with a wider range of expertise, experiences and writing styles, which is important for any content marketing team.” 

Related Article: 3 Content Marketing Bandwagons to Jump On

How Do You Know When to Bring on More Team Members?

The experts all agreed that there’s a point when bringing in new content marketing team members has diminishing returns or even a negative impact on the team’s effectiveness.

Xia believes additional content writers should only be brought on board if they will increase the output of high-quality content. “Quality content means content that is increasing brand awareness, generating more leads, and bringing sales,” Xia stated. He believes increasing the volume of content produced — with a sacrifice of quality — is definitely detrimental to a brand’s content marketing effort.

Quality is paramount when it comes to building a content marketing team. “It is far better to have fewer authors producing smaller volumes of top quality, relevant content,” Kay concluded, “than it is to have many churning out generic, off-message, or dull content.” In the end, organizations will need to experiment to find the right team size and structure to fulfill their brand’s content marketing strategy without sacrificing quality.