“Behind every piece of bad content is an executive who asked for it.”
This quote hails from Michael Brenner, CEO of Marketing Insider Group, a content marketing and development enterprise in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Very often, when executives ask for marketing content, no clear vision exists for it, Brenner argued during a recent Marketing Nation Summit in Las Vegas. “What will be the business impact of the content requested?” he asked. “How will it be measured?” Few executives are able to answer those questions, but still commission content to be written.
Our Toronto Online Digital Marketing Course Directors, who have amassed over 25 years of combined experience in content marketing, have come up with 5 mistakes to avoid in 2017.
Not Engaging in Content at All
Even though this is something that most people consider a given (creating new content and putting it out there) you would not believe how many businesses are not doing it on a regular basis. My personal pet peeves are blogs. Pretty much every company that has a website has a blog. Can you guess how many of those blogs are up kept on a regular basis?
What you have to realize is that your product and service pages and offers are great, but they will not help you rank and they will not help you increase your engagement. Blog posts will. Blog posts are a great way to incorporate long-tail keywords and appear in the SERPs for phrases people are actually searching for. Create a blogging strategy and commit to it for the long haul!
Going for Quantity Instead of Quality
Now, I know I have said that you should publish content often previously and that still stands. However, I never said that you should publish just about anything and everything under the sun. Regardless of the industry you are in, there will be hundreds of questions that your customers need answers to. Taking the easy way out and publishing bad content that is not geared toward the needs of your users will look unprofessional and unappealing to read.
Instead, make sure you understand your audience and their needs and focus on creating content that answers their questions. Do not copy and paste things that are already online – use them as a guideline. Always aspire to create something that is at least one notch better than what is already written by other authors.
No Actionable Content Goals
It’s tempting to just sit down and start creating and publishing content on the whim. In fact, that’s what most executives and their marketing departments do because they hope it will bring them more exposure and better rankings on search engines. For a small few, this approach will pay off. However, for the majority of us, it will not.
Your content should be doing one of the following three things:
– Create meaningful engagement
– Drive traffic to your page
– Establish you as a major player in your field
Not Using What You Have
Over half of all content on blogs and websites go unused. You are wasting your time writing content without thinking of ways to recycle and repurpose it at a later date. By doing so, you will notice that creating a content from scratch can be more expensive and time consuming. Recycling your top investments will help you a great deal in digital marketing and give you more time to focus on other important things like operations.
Too Much Selling and Too Little Teaching
The focus of content marketing is to educate first and sell second. Ideally, you don’t mention yourself or your business and your products or services until the end of the blog post. Your goal is to educate your reader how to solve a problem and who to reach out to for help. If readers or viewers want to know how to install a WordPress theme, for instance, they should know how to do so by the end of the article or video. Your end goal is to have readers share your content to help you look like an expert in something.
In order for you to accomplish any one of these goals, you first need to know who you are writing for. Having a clear audience persona is a must. The second thing on your lists should be keyword research. Once you know who your audience is and what they are looking for you can start creating actionable content that will drive convertible traffic to your website.
DMAC is a company that offers Online Digital and Social Media Marketing Courses. We are headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. For information about our online courses and enrollment dates click here.
There is no magic bullet when it comes to content marketing, and there is also no one-size-fits-all solution. Your brand is inimitable, and so are your customers. When performed with consistency and appreciation, content marketing can help you and your company build long-term relationships with customers, converting them into brand advocates, enhancing operational efficiency and driving long-term success.