Five Common Content Marketing Mistakes

Nearly every content marketer has experienced this frustration: You’ve planned your strategy, done all the necessary research and created interesting content, but you’re not getting results. The new leads and increased sales you expected haven’t materialized. While content marketing can be a powerful tool when done correctly, a few errors can sabotage your efforts. Let’s review some of the most common mistakes seen in content marketing campaigns and learn how to avoid these pitfalls.

1. You Haven’t Defined a Target Audience

If you don’t know exactly who you’re targeting with your message, you may be attempting to target everyone; that strategy is bound to fail. A marketing message that works well with teenage girls isn’t going to resonate with men in their forties. Figuring out the details of your target audience will help you refine your message and reach your customers successfully.

2. You’re Pushing Your Product Too Hard

Content marketing is intended to draw in more potential customers, but you need to be subtle in your approach. Don’t turn every blog post into a sales pitch; the best content tells a story and motivates readers to share it with others. One way to pull this off is to talk about a problem your audience is likely to face and show how your product can help solve it. Including some user-generated content is another great way to showcase your product or service without using blatant advertising tactics.

3. All Your Content Focuses on Your Product

After a while, you run out of stories to tell about your brand or products. Instead of pumping out the same type of content again and again, try branching out to other related topics that will still keep your audience interested. Creating content that doesn’t directly address your product also gives you extra opportunities to showcase your brand’s personality.

4. You Go Overboard with SEO

It’s important to follow standard SEO best practices when you develop content, but you don’t want to make the mistake of writing for search engines instead of humans. Stuffing links and keywords into your blog posts won’t boost your rankings, and it will likely drive away your readers.

5. You Don’t Analyze Your Results

There are plenty of insights to be gleaned from Google Analytics and other tools. Examining click-through rates and the amount of time spent on your website can help you identify your most successful content items and strategies. Don’t limit your analysis to the basic marketing metrics: Checking out how often your content is shared on social networks is another way to determine your most effective items.

Developing a successful content marketing strategy is likely to require trial and error, and it may take a few tries to get your campaigns on the right track. Despite the extra effort that may be needed, content marketing can be a terrific way for your business or brand to expand its reach and engage with its customers.

Omar Kattan
About Omar Kattan
Omar is MD & Chief Strategy Officer at Sandstorm Digital. His experience includes 10 years in traditional marketing and advertising in the Middle East and a further 10 years at two of the largest media agencies in the UK. Follow Omar on Twitter for updates on the latest in digital, branding, advertising and marketing.
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