How often do business owners say they don’t have time to create great content? The reality is that creating quality content takes time. To build a successful blog or brand, you must invest serious effort into producing high-quality content.
A survey by the Content Marketing Institute found that 92% of marketers say that their company views content as a business asset. Another source claims that content marketing costs around 60% less than traditional advertising methods. Approximately 35% of customers visit brand pages regularly, and 78% of small businesses gain new customers via social media! 60% of marketers, according to this article, create at least one piece of content daily (eMarketer), encompassing written, image-based, and audio content.
But despite its popularity, content marketing isn’t always effective. It’s common for businesses to commit some common mistakes when creating content.
You need to avoid these 12 common content marketing mistakes immediately with content marketing.
Business owners and content marketers consume someone else’s content or create content for others to devour.
Therefore, we must avoid falling into these biggest content marketing pitfalls. These are some of the biggest content marketing mistakes that can cause severe damage to your content marketing efforts and marketing campaigns. Let us look at them.
What You Need to Avoid When It Comes to Content Marketing
1. No SMART Goal.
If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you may have observed that I enjoy talking about SMART goals.
Without goals, there would be no way for you to measure your performance. So set your goal(s) and adjust to stay on track.
By setting thoughtful goals, you will have a long-term view of your content marketing. You will not fall into the trap of trying to do too much and expecting instant results.
Document your content marketing plan, goals and strategies because, according to Cision, when the content strategy is only verbal, the percentage of businesses that get results reduces to 32%.
2. You are Not Focusing on the Customer.
According to this post on Content Marketing Institute, over 90% of websites are still ego-centric corporate brochures.
Another post notes that 55% of people who get brand content say it’s not interesting or relevant to them!
Do you mistake focusing your content efforts only on your brand when engaging in content marketing? Instead, you need to focus on your customer.
Please research what content your customers want and give it to them at the right time and through the right social media channel.
Remember that good content is all about education. So, create content that will educate your target audience.
If your content is not focused on educating, informing or entertaining your audience, then your content will be too ‘salesy’, and you might lose your audience.
If you do your research well and know your customer well, pick a topic or two that will interest them and stick to them.
So, you’ll not find me blogging about politics, religion, entertainment, fashion, current affairs, gossip, or engaging with such content on any marketing channel. I know my audience and strive to give them what they want.
The same CMI post mentioned above notes that broad coverage that pleases everyone might have worked when options were few. Still, with our competitive content market, you need to identify one audience, fulfil one need, and dig deep to establish your dominance.
The article notes that: brands forcing humour around certain social news or world events is a mistake, especially if they don’t have an audience in that arena.
It warns that anyone who leverages current tragedies or politically false information to promote a brand, product, or service is making an enormous mistake.
If you focus on your customers, you’ll not make the mistake of being everything to everyone.
Instead, you’ll focus on giving your customers the quality content they need and deserve.
3. Concentrate on the Hard Sell
Effective content marketing strategy doesn’t focus on the hard sell. As mentioned above, a successful content marketing strategy uses content to educate, inform and entertain and not concentrate on the hard sell.
The sale will come if you know your customers and give them the needed content.
But if you focus on the hard sell, you may lose your customer altogether. Nobody likes to feel pressured to buy.
4. No Clear-Cut Call to Action (CTA)
What next step do you want your audience to take after they consume your content?
Make sure you state what you want them to do by providing a call to action.
Your call to action might be as simple as asking them to comment on your post, subscribe to your newsletter, watch a video, or download an e-book.
Whatever your CTA is, let it be clear and concise. If your CTA is in the form of a button on your web page, let that button stand out from the other elements of the webpage, making it easy for your audience to take action.
5. No Communication
Content marketing is not a monologue. It’s a conversation. It’s communication between you and your customers.
Make your discussions about your content. Please don’t make it all about what you have to say. Get feedback from your audience. Hear the opinions, views, and criticisms. Keep an open mind.
6. Content with No Substance
If you’ve started your internet marketing using content marketing, you’ve had your fair share of making this mistake by now.
You want to test the waters when you’re new to content marketing. You also doubt your capabilities, and you end up creating content with little or no substance.
I cringe when I reflect on some content I created many years ago. But with time, you’re bound to improve, and your content marketing will have more substance.
So, take a hard look at your content and ask yourself if you would share it if you were a typical customer. How do you expect your customer to share it if you do not share it?
Proper research on your target audience is vital for your content marketing strategy, not to identify keywords but to identify the topics your customers are looking for.
If you need help producing content, contact us. We would be glad to help.
Please research what content your customers want and give it to them at the right time and through the right social media channel. Click To Tweet
7. No Variety
Variety is the spice of life. So don’t be a one-trick pony. Produce content in various formats. You can have blog posts, infographics, slide presentations, photos, videos, podcasts, etc. You can also encourage your marketing team to try user generated content to spice things up. These days, the list is almost endless.
According to this post, if your target audience comprises busy people who think that time is money, the best content you can create is a podcast they can listen to on their way to work. But if your audience prefers reading, then blog posts, social media posts and maybe infographics are for you.
Once you have a variety of content, your audience will notice, and even the search engines will see and reward you for the same with improved rankings in search engine result pages.
These days people love videos, especially live videos on social media. So, to take your content marketing to the next level, you might want to try your hands on live video.
An excellent way to go about it is to give your audience a behind-the-scenes look at your brand.
Showcase the office, your staff, your products, services, quirks and all. Be yourself, and your audience will love you for it.
8. Focusing on Going-Viral
At one point or another, every content producer dreams that their content will “go viral”.
But nobody can make anything go viral except your audience.
If you create content that resonates with your audience and they like it, they will share it with their friends.
If your audience doesn’t like your content, they will not share it. It’s as simple as that.
Some months ago, I wrote about Why Going Viral Should Not Be Your Goal on Social Media, where I went into more detail about this. You can reread it to learn more.
9. No Proper Planning, Scheduling or Consistent Production
Do you have a documented content marketing strategy? If you don’t, it’s obvious you’re creating content randomly.
That’s like shooting arrows in the dark, hoping you’ll hit the target. It would help if you had a well-documented content marketing plan and scheduling/editorial calendar.
These will also help you gain consistency in content production. If you produce content regularly, your audience will appreciate you for it.
They would then know when to expect your following piece of content. But if you’re not regular, you risk losing your audience to your competitor, who has some consistency in her content production.
10. Not Promoting Your Content
As much as 60% to 70% of B2B marketing content goes unused, according to SiriusDecisions, so content creators don’t put enough thought and strategy into most marketing efforts.
You may have a stellar piece of content that you’ve invested a lot of time and resources to produce.
But that piece of content will never reach its full potential if you do not promote it to your email list, for instance. Gone are the days when social media was an accessible playground.
These days you need to pay to play. So be ready to spend money promoting your content on social media and search engines.
Content marketing is a serious business; you need to give it the budget it deserves.
11. Not Creating Mobile-Friendly Content
Mobile is now the first screen, i.e. the first screen your audience will use to experience your brand is usually the screen on smartphones or tablets.
So, whatever content you’re creating should be mobile-friendly. Being mobile-friendly means, it should look good across different screen resolutions and be fast and straightforward to download.
It should also be easy to consume by your customers when commuting.
12. Not Tracking the Results
Are you measuring your content marketing performance? Tracking and analysing data from your website visitors are vital in preparing and refining your content marketing strategy.
Even getting to know your audience is impossible without tracking your Google Analytics data and monitoring your content marketing performance.
In conclusion, avoiding these common content marketing mistakes is essential so you don’t lose potential customers.
So, there you have it. These are the 12 content marketing mistakes you need to avoid immediately. Do you think I left out any content marketing mist? Comment below.
I’ve noticed clients that allow their fear of making mistakes to hinder them from engaging in content marketing.
Some procrastinate about having a blog because they don’t want to make grammatical errors or they don’t want their content to look amateurish.
While I understand your fears about making any content marketing mistake, you should not allow that fear to prevent you from engaging in content marketing.
We have the skills and tools you need to help you grow your business online through content marketing.
We will do all the hard work of creating and marketing your content on your behalf. You get to take all the credit and reap the rewards.
- Where Can I Post My B2B Products Online?
- What Is the Best Content to Produce to Get People to Buy from a Fashion Brand?
- How to Create Viral Content Marketing Campaigns to Grow Your Audience
- Content Marketing Tactics To Increase Your Audience Engagement
- Why You Must Be Thinking about Content Marketing
- The Best Advice about Content Marketing You Have Ever Heard