In today’s digitally-driven age, the demand for consistent, valuable content is continually on the rise. Content marketing is now being used by organisations of all sizes to boost their online presence, enhance customer loyalty and generate profitable leads
However, while you may have been able to get away with a ‘one size fits all’ approach in the past, today, content marketing is a little more sophisticated. If done in a haphazard manner, it can have disastrous results in terms of organic search and loss of business.
Unfortunately, there are far too many examples of content marketers getting it wrong. To make sure you don’t follow in their footsteps, here are five of the most common content mishaps, as well as tips on how to avoid them.
A lack of variety
Limiting content variety, both in terms of format and distribution, is one of the most common mistakes made by marketers. By restricting the content you produce, you risk bypassing a large section of your audience who would have otherwise engaged with your brand. While publishing blog posts on a social network may be an effective way to share content, you’ll only be catering for those who enjoy reading text and who use that specific platform.
Utilising a variety of formats and platforms is one of the most effective ways to increase brand exposure, extend your outreach and market your content to the full. Although the written word is still fundamental to content marketing, try to think outside the box and supplement text with other forms of sharable content, such as infographics, videos and podcasts.
However, while it may be important to embrace new content formats, it’s equally vital that you plan your content strategically. Another area that often sees content marketing efforts fall short is inconsistency. Don’t be fooled into thinking that producing vaguely-relevant content and publishing it across numerous channels arbitrarily will win you a widespread audience and generate new leads.
To see optimum results and build a trusting relationship with your customers, every piece of content you produce needs to reflect your brand, have a specific purpose and be outreached to an appropriate medium. Integrating content into your overall marketing strategy will help to reinforce consistency.
Creating dull, irrelevant content is the perfect recipe for a marketing disaster. Content that is unoriginal, watered-down, convoluted, too simplistic or a thinly veiled marketing ploy will only succeed in sending your audience elsewhere.
To avoid this faux pas, focus on producing highly relevant and interesting content that your customers will want to read. Steer clear of business-centric content that reads like a sales pitch and aim to provide unique and useful information that is tailored to your audience. In other words, make sure you’re delivering the right content to the right people.
Content that has no purpose
Another all-too-frequent error made by marketers is to overlook content as a selling point. If you’re selling a service or product, forgetting a call-to-action is a sure fire way to lose business. Regardless of how captivating or inspirational the content is, if you’re not publishing with a purpose, your marketing strategies are likely to fall flat. With no call-to-action, your readers will be inclined to leave your web page, which can have a detrimental impact on organic search (SEO) rankings.
To achieve your business goals, start by asking yourself this: ‘What do I want my readers to do once they’ve read or consumed my content?’ Whether you’re looking to generate sales, have your article shared across social media or drive more traffic to other content, having a strong call-to-action is crucial.
Not doing keyword research
Companies that forgo keyword research before producing content are often regarded as the biggest sinners in the world of content marketing. Content marketing and SEO go hand-in-hand, and if you want to produce quality content that reflects what people are looking for, carrying out keyword research is vital. There are plenty of tools out there that are designed to simplify the keyword research process, and failing to take advantage of these could prove to be a costly mistake.
There’s no denying that getting to grips with content marketing can be a steep learning curve, especially if you lack the relevant expertise or experience. However, with a little bit of planning and strategic organisation, there’s no reason why you can’t avoid these mistakes and bolster your content marketing efforts.