Content marketing has become an essential component of marketing strategies and for very good reason. It’s one of the best ways to build your
brand reputation, extend your brand reach, increase brand trust, improve word-of-mouth marketing, and boost sales. What’s not to love?
While content marketing isn’t difficult and can be inexpensive in comparison to other marketing tactics, being too cheap or short-sited with your content marketing can get you into trouble. Making mistakes can actually damage your brand!
With that in mind, here are five content marketing mistakes that will surely annoy your audience. Avoid them at all costs!
1. Don’t Forget to Use the 80-20 Rule.
Content marketing is not about self-promotion. When done correctly, content marketing is an amazing indirect marketing tactic, but that doesn’t mean you can never promote your brand, products, or services within your content.
As you build your content marketing funnels, stick to the 80-20 rule where 80% or more of your content is not self-promotional and 20% or less is self-promotional. If you tip the balance to being overly self-promotional, you’ll annoy your audience and they’ll turn away from your brand in search of another that doesn’t constantly promote itself.
2. Don’t Publish Content that No One Wants to Read.
One of the worst things you can do is invest time and money into writing, publishing, and promoting content that no one wants to read. Instead, take some time to understand your target audience’s problems, wants, and needs, and then, create content that is useful and meaningful to them.
Use tools like Buzzsumo or NinjaOutreach to research content published by other sites related to your niche or about topics similar to those that are important to your target audience to determine what content is performing well. Use your learnings to create even better content on similar subjects. Also, invest in a great writer, because today’s audiences won’t bother reading poorly written content.
3. Don’t Forget Whom Your Target Customers Are.
Speaking of your target audience, it’s essential that you always keep your target customers top of mind. If you spread yourself too thin and try to be everywhere online by publishing content on every blog, website, and social media site you can find, the quality of your content will suffer. More importantly, you’ll waste time and money communicating with people who will never become your customers.
Instead, go where your target customers are. For example, business-to-business brands need to be active on LinkedIn while business-to-consumer brands should definitely be active on Facebook. Yes, big companies with big marketing budgets are active everywhere, but with a limited budget, you need to be laser focused.
4. Don’t Publish in a Silo.
Don’t make the mistake of publishing content only on your own website, blog, and social media profiles and pages. This type of silo marketing won’t work. If you build it, they will not come.
To be successful with content marketing, you need to get out of your comfort zone and put yourself out there across the web. Look for websites and blogs where your target audience spends time and publish guest posts and content. The goal is to spread your useful content, and that means letting other sites publish it first sometimes.
5. Don’t Forget to Publish Offline.
Content marketing isn’t just a digital marketing tactic. You should also publish content offline to surround consumers with your content so they can self-select how they want to interact with your brand. Not everyone likes to read blogs, but they might like to read a newsletter.
Effective content marketing options that don’t necessarily happen on the web include email marketing, newsletters, and direct mail. Yes, some of these are more expensive than publishing online content, but the results can be even better since your brand is likely to stand out than it is on the crowded web