Content marketing is easy, except when it isn't. Here are content marketing mistakes to avoid.
For any business content marketing is vital to building not only a profitable business but a good reputation against your competitors. Unfortunately for many businesses, content marketing isn’t a strong point, leaving businesses with a content strategy that isn’t up to the standards necessary to ensure their online reputation stays intact.
Marketing content to your audience is more intricate than just writing about any random thing associated with your business. Instead it takes careful planning and some strategic thinking. When not planned correctly your business may fall into the path of making easy to fix. So how do you know if you’re making these mistakes? The following is a guide on some of the content marketing mistakes that many businesses make but don’t know it.
Content Marketing Mistakes to Avoid
Creating Content Without A Purpose
All content in your content marketing strategy should serve a specific purpose. Whether it’s subscriptions, sales, conversions or gaining leads, all content should have a purpose for creating it. Ask the question "Why does this piece of content exist?" before wasting time creating it. Ask yourself "What is the inended outcome of this content?".
The idea of creating content to build your brand reputation is to provide your target audience with something valuable, insightful, and most of all useful. In giving your audience something worth reading it not only helps them to determine you’re a strong player in your industry, but it also gives your business a good reputation.
The purpose of most content marketing strategies is to generate leads back to your website in order to gain conversions. Most content created will have a call to action at the bottom to direct potential customers to visit your website or buy a product. Have you incorporated your call to action?
Not Making An Effort When Creating Content
While content marketing may encompass different areas, one key area that shouldn’t be ignored is taking the time to develop great content that solves a problem for your target audience. Many businesses make the mistake of generating ordinary, boring, or non-useful information that doesn’t help their target audience. This doesn’t help your chances of improving your brand’s reputation. In fact it could make things worse. When someone visits less than wonderful content the click away from it and click on something else in search results. This is called a "bounce" and signals to Google to move your search result lower.
Instead you need to start by working out which content sales funnel you’re looking to target. Here are some examples of sales funnels and the messages associated with each of them:
- What do I need to make a website?
- How to setup a website?
- Creating a website for your business
- Best ways to create a website
- How to make a website?
- How to create a website?
Those in the low funnel are only browsing and haven’t completely made up their mind on what they really want to do. Although many people target this area of the sales funnel, it does tend to be more generic information. There is a higher probability that the prospect will choose a company other than yours for the final decision - but not all is lost.
If you take the time, focus on the top funnel you have a better chance of really pushing your reputation as an industry leader. These more generic searches place your company in the running from the very beginning so long as they are still there for later searches - the "buy now" related searches people engage in during th end of the decision making process.
Make sure when creating the content, you answer the question that is posed in full detail. If someone wants to know how to create a website, you need to tell them all the details and exactly what they need to do. You don't want them to "bounce" and go to another site to get the rest of the info they look for.
This will show them you know what you’re talking about and you’ve taken the time to help answer their questions. The end result in creating great content is to:
- Increase the number of clicks
- Increase your audience base
- Gain brand and social recognition
- Encourage reader engagement (sharing, comments etc).
You also need to take the time to:
- Format it correctly
- Make the content interesting and easy to read
- Add high quality images that add additional clarification to the message
- Remove any grammatical errors
- Add a call to action
- Write about a topic that’s right for your target audience.
- Include relevant keywords for search engine optimisation
Not Trying All Content Types
Successful content marketing strategies make use of all content avenues available to them. Many businesses tend to only write a blog or two and hope for the best. Instead you need to test the waters with some other areas of content, instead of just blogs. These other types of content include:
- Case studies
- Website content
All these areas of content can help to improve your reputation and give your business a chance to market to a wider audience that’s interested in your industry. Only using one content outlet such as blogging will only push your business so far, so try to design your marketing strategy with more content outlets.
Not Measuring Content Performance
Your content marketing strategy won’t be successful if you done measure the performance of the content. You can measure your content’s performance through a number of ways which include:
- Customer Engagement – Are your customers engaging and commenting on the content?
- Business Revenue – Is your business making a profit from the content, if that’s what it was designed to do?
- Quality Leads – Are you generating quality leads within the first few weeks of posting the content?
While there’s no right or wrong answer, other metrics to consider include:
- Linking domains
- Social shares
- Website traffic
- Downloads and/or registrations
Google analytics can also measure and provide performance results to give more accurate data. See the images below:
When creating a content marketing strategy for your business the best way to avoid some of these common mistakes is to work out who your audience is (called Personas), what they want, and how you can give it to them through words. Creating any old content marketing strategy is easy, creating a powerful and success content marketing strategy on the other hand takes time, effort, and research. So were you making any of these mistakes?