Content marketing is not just writing a few blog posts and creating a couple of videos. Effective content marketing demands you have a plan in place.
Your plan not only needs topics of discussion and a schedule, but it also needs to be structured around content your target market wants to read.
You are wasting your time and a disservice to your business If no one is reading your content.
Content in general and content marketing specifically need to serve a purpose. A purpose to the reader, your prospect and clients.
If your content seems to have no traction there are six reasons why. Let’s look and see if you suffer from one or more of these reasons and learn how to fix your content.
No Purpose (Strategy)
Like all other forms of marketing, if you’re simply doing a task without a purpose, or strategy, behind the why, where and when, then it will fail.
Content will be ignored if it is posted at random times. People like consistency. Figure out when your audience is online and what platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. they are visiting.
Test, test, test. Tailor your content marketing strategy based on reader analytics. Are they liking, sharing or commenting? Are they clicking through links embedded in the article? Are they responding to a call-to-action?
If you’re working without a defined purpose, it’s difficult for your audience to clearly see what you’re looking for them to do.
Having a content purpose means you’re putting intent behind your content and tracking each step of the process. It is recommended to create an editorial calendar that enhances your content marketing strategy and gives you the best chance of success.
A content marketing editorial calendar should include:
- Target keywords
- Content details
- Publishing times
As was stated earlier, people like consistency. A consumer service client of ours found that posting an update or article between 11 am and 1 pm. On Tuesdays to have the greatest results.
Your day(s) and time of day to post your content will vary. You must test. Usually, Monday and Friday are the worst days for business to business content. Your audience will be distracted on Fridays and who looks forward to Mondays?
Posting at the wrong time or even worse, infrequently, makes it difficult to attract attention and gain loyal followers. Consistency with when and where you post your content will earn you trust and credibility from your audience.
We know that it’s difficult to create top-notch content. You don’t have to post every day, but you should try weekly content and at the minimum, monthly content.
Whatever schedule you adapt, just don’t post low-quality content. Find the right balance of quality and quantity for your business needs.
Too Many Sales Pitches
Did you know the first deadly sin of content marketing? Content that is nothing but a sales pitch without providing any value at all.
The true purpose of content marketing isn’t to directly sell your services. Instead, it is to generate a vested interest in your business that could lead to a sale in the future.
You want to establish trust first with your audience. If you have a sales pitch in the beginning of your article, or all you do is create sales pitch type content you will ruin any trust you could gain.
Simply put, customers are more sophisticated and don’t like to be pitched to anymore. People can easily find the information they need on the internet without the aid of a sales person.
Most buyers don’t want to talk directly to a sales person until they’ve done research online and narrowed down their options.
This is exactly what good digital content provides you, and the customer!
You write quality content that educates, informs and positions your service as the perfect solution. They will choose to buy that service from you because you are the expert that educated them that they have grown to trust.
A content marketing strategy that has a purpose and walks a reader through a sales funnel will address their needs for each stage of the buyer’s journey and eventually guide them toward the sale.
Not Understanding Your Audience
It would seem to be basic business 101, but when it comes to writing content many seem to cast a wide net instead of choosing a specific audience.
Your content marketing strategy needs to be focused on what pain or pains your customers want solved. They may have many pains, and if that is the case, focus on one at a time.
Get into your customers head. What and how do they think. How and what do they react to? Look at your competitors and learn what and how they convey their solution. Emulate them. Don’t copy them; emulate them.
Why re-create the wheel?
Follow your competitors. Track their ad’s messages. When and where are they marketing?
Once you have these answers, then create content with you own voice that speaks directly to your ideal audience. The key here is to not guess. Study and know.
You Don’t Seem Trustworthy
People buy from other people. If you don’t use your name or show your face on your website, social media accounts and in your content, people will have a hard time determining you to be trustworthy.
Unless you are a big brand, you need to establish yourself as the local expert in your field. To do that, they need to know who you are. They want to feel a connection.
You must go beyond sales language and bland, generic messages and instead have an approachable message that the customer can relate to.
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