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Francis Santos

Content Marketing: How to Succeed, What to Avoid

Dec 01 2011, 08:34 PM by

Even the best of us make mistakes. Unfortunately, making mistakes with content marketing can be costly for your efforts. This is even true when you’re working with great content. Believe it or not, but there are several high quality articles, blog posts and videos sitting idle online. There is even more material that never stood a chance of going anywhere. When it comes to content marketing, knowing what to avoid is just as important as knowing what steps to take on the road to success.
No Game Plan
Creating great content can be exhausting. So much so that when the creation part is done, you may find yourself eager to move on to the next project and be done with it. Marketers from all walks of life fall into this trap, but it is probably one of the worst things you can do. Before creating your content, you must have a comprehensive strategy to accompany it, one that sees it making the biggest impact possible. Publishing your finished content is one thing. Nurturing and maximizing its potential is something entirely different.
Failing to Take Full Advantage
Are you doing everything you can to make a splash with your content? If you even have to think about it, the answer is probably no. You must commit yourself to the actual marketing if you want to get the most out of your content marketing efforts. This doesn’t mean you have to jump on every bandwagon that has come along, but doing things such as submitting your work to social bookmarking sites, sharing on social networks and including it in your email campaigns can go a long way in increasing its mileage.
Targeting the Masses
Maybe you are trying to reach hundreds of people with your message. Perhaps your message is aimed at thousands. No matter the size of the audience, you will fail at content marketing time and again if you are targeting the masses, rather than a specific segment. Hamilton Jewelers isn’t wasting time marketing its luxury jewelry pieces to everyone. Its efforts are focused on a well-to-do audience that is more likely to take those pieces off the shelves. This is the same targeting approach you should take with your content marketing strategy.
Being Too Aggressive
Treating content marketing as another sales tool is a big mistake several marketers are making. Sure, generating conversions and driving sales may be a part of the ultimate goal, but if you go into the situation thinking these are the only things that matter, you’ll probably end up with more fruitless bounces than you do conversions. Content marketing is more about being useful and helping the person consuming it than it is about selling. It is this type of value that will convince them to come back. Simply realizing this is half the battle.
Giving up Too Early
Content marketing can be tough, and success is not something that occurs overnight. It could be months or even years before you accomplish your goals and start seeing the kind of results you’re after. Expecting instant gratification, too many marketers get discouraged and throw in the towel when the good results don’t come right away. Just look at all the abandoned blogs, Facebook pages and LinkedIn profiles collecting dust on the web. Stick with the program, be willing to put in the work and you will find that a solid content marketing strategy can work wonders.

Getting the most from your content may not be easy, but it can be accomplished with the due diligence. Know of some good content marketing points we missed? Feel free to share them in the comments.

Posted in Tips & Resources, Online Branding, Email Marketing News

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