Content marketing’s stock is sky-high right now. It’s the hot topic, and it seems like almost every marketer is recommending it. There are some strong chances that you’ve already implemented some form of content marketing, whether it is a simple blog or a weekly video series.
We love content, and we know that it can do great things for your business. But there is one huge problem that plagues many business owners throughout the country: Content marketing is an extremely muddy field. Businesses don’t really know what they’re doing, and they don’t know what works. Content marketing has unfortunately become a cliched buzzword, and guru personalities are brandishing it on every platform possible. They are not, however, informing you of the pitfalls of content marketing.
Content marketing isn’t as simple as throwing up a blog post and calling it a day. There are roadblocks that you’ll need to bypass. Overcoming these obstacles will yield great rewards for your business, though.
Your content doesn’t engage
Engagement is a metric that encompasses a wide range of results. The effectiveness of your content rests upon the power of your engagement– things like replies, likes, retweets, visits and shares. Because of this, engagement becomes a hefty word, with several different meanings– depending on your goal. If your goal is to push engagement on your social media networks, then things like shares or retweets matter immensely. If you want more participation in your blog, then comments and discussions are what you need to look for. Engagement, if you simplify it, is about getting people involved and interested in your content.
It can be difficult to attain. Enticing people to get hooked to your content is more difficult than ever. Your competition is fierce, and vying for the attention of your visitors is like a dogfight. Four years ago, you could get away with having average content, because you were probably one of the few businesses in your market to implement content marketing.
All of this is to say that you have to:
- A) Be laser targeted to your market
- B) Use the right type of content for your market
- C) Make sure that the content is actually good
Your audience wants to read content that applies to them. In 2015, there’s been a focus on personalization, and for good reason. Segment your audience and deliver content to these specific segments. Your content shouldn’t be one size fits all.
When people think of content, they only think of blog or social media posts. Of course, these forms of content work, but that’s where everyone starts and stops. Yes, you need a blog, but you might need to diversify your content mediums. Try using different forms of media. You might discover that your audience prefers videos over text-based content.
Lastly, make sure that the content isn’t poor. The problem that many businesses are having, unfortunately, is due to having subpar content that doesn’t separate itself from the pack. Businesses are recycling stale content ideas, and it’s not really working for them.
Your schedule is sporadic
It’s generally hard to sustain a consistent content creation schedule. This is mostly due to the fact that businesses are overloaded with important responsibilities, and it’s easy to overlook content creation. You’ll have a tough time gaining and keeping momentum in your content marketing if you don’t maintain a schedule.
On the flipside, there are businesses that are producing a great deal of content on a consistent basis, but they are approaching another problem: they’re burning out. When you start to burn out, the posting schedule that was once dependable now becomes sporadic. The flame is dying.
There are remedies for both cases.
Create a content creation team. Organize the responsibilities so that each person on the team has an active role. This makes it easy to keep the wheels turning. Delegating tasks will help you to keep pace.
You may be able to get by with just one or two people creating content. But if you have different types of content that you’re creating– and especially if you’re producing content in high volume– you may just need more people to help with the workload.
Your ROI is nebulous
One of the problems with content marketing is that it may be difficult to accurately track your success. It’s not like PPC marketing where someone clicks on an ad, and the data is readily available. However, it’s still very possible to measure your ROI– you just need to identify what your goal is.
If your goal is engagement, then you need to measure things like comments, retweets, likes, shares. If your goal is more sales, then you need to place call-to-actions (CTA’s) in your content, and track how many people bought from the CTA’s.
Make sure these metrics actually matter. Be wary of vanity metrics.
Content marketing isn’t all peaches and roses. But that doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to see success from it. Use these tips to overcome content marketing’s most frustrating roadblocks.
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