Feb 10, 2015

The Top 3 Content Marketing Pitfalls & How to Avoid Them

by Digital Marketing Institute

A recent study from Smart Insights revealed that content marketing will be the most commercially important digital marketing trend for 2015, with 29.6% of marketers citing it as their top digital tool for the year.

The Top 3 Content Marketing Pitfalls & How to Avoid Them - Commercial Content Marketing | Digital Marketing Institute

However, a recent survey by the CMI also revealed that there are still some pesky problems plaguing content marketers, the kind of problems that can prevent them from achieving digital marketing success. The main problems? 51% of marketers claimed it was measuring content effectiveness, 50% claimed it was producing engaging content and 46% said it was a lack of budget.

We investigate the 3 main problems and explore 3 real and potentially strategy-changing solutions.

The Top 3 Content Marketing Pitfalls & How to Avoid Them - State of Content Marketing | Digital Marketing Institute

(Source: B2C Content Marketing: 2015 Benchmarks, Budget & Trends – North America)

Top Content Marketing Pitfalls (& Solutions)

1. Measuring Content Effectiveness:

The Top 3 Content Marketing Pitfalls & How to Avoid Them - Measuring Content Effectiveness - Content Scoring | Digital Marketing Institute

The Big Problem:

Digital marketers find it hard to prove the value of their content to top level management. For example, it’s mighty difficult to attribute customer spend or lead generation to individual blog posts or webinars. Some managers who don’t understand the true value of digital marketing might ask, ‘What’s the point and where’s the value?’

How to Solve It:

Let them ask – because you’re going to have the answers. Kapost’s Content Scoring helps digital marketers identify what content moves people down the funnel so you can determine the main content types worth investing in. This super clever tool allows you to assess how many leads and opportunities each piece of content is driving.

Keen to know more? Check out this nifty infographic, that demonstrates how Content Scoring gets to work as buyers consume your content and move along the buyers’ cycle to become qualified leads. Our advice? Lay out your new findings on a shiny spreadsheet and showcase the real value of your content marketing efforts to your doubting peers at your next management meeting. Just resist that tempting phrase: ‘I told you so.’

2. Producing Engaging Content

The Big Problem:

A lack of resources, staff and internal knowledge can lead to a lack of inspiration. Maybe you’ve only got one person heading up your content team, maybe their time is tight and the volume of content they have to create is expanding.

How to Solve It:

First, it’s important to focus on quality over quantity. A few well written pieces of evergreen content will serve you better than a dozen rushed articles of thin content that will date quickly. To make your content more engaging address your audience directly, use humor and pose pertinent questions.

Write like you’re talking to friends. People don’t have time to dishevel corporate speak. It’s boring, uninspired and feels like work. The job of your content is to make your audience feel alive and inspired to take action. Need help? Read Jon Morrow’s blog, Boost Blog Traffic to get a sense of how he creates an emotional response in his readers, while adding real value, know-how, tips and education.

3: Lack of Budget

The Big Problem:

A lack of budget can hold you back from effectively distributing your content. And with social media algorithms continuously changing to encourage digital marketers to pay more and more for their advertising, digital spend can become a dwindling resource. But targeting the right audience doesn’t have to be out of your reach.

How to Solve It:

Connecting with influencers is free. Sure, it takes time, energy and effort for your team but many prolific inbound marketers believe that nothing is better at achieving real (and relevant) reach. Some even ignore paid content distribution options in favour of an effective inbound strategy despite having a healthy budget to play with.

The beauty of building relationships with influencers is that it allows you to connect with a targeted and actively engaged audience – the audience your influencers have access to and influence over. These people are interested, even invested, in your niche. What’s more, these individuals are not just ticking a box for ‘likes’, ‘gender’ and ‘location.’

Want to find out how to find and connect with the right influencers? This blog post provides a detailed step-by-step process to help you engage with relevant influencers and significantly expand your content’s reach.

Our online Professional Diploma in Social Media Marketing teaches you the best practices for marketing through LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and YouTube. It includes 30 hours of in-depth lectures taught by industry experts and will equip you with all the skills and knowledge you need to plan, build and measure effective social media strategies. Find out more here.

About Zara Burke

Zara is the Digital Marketing Institute's Digital Marketing Executive. She writes about all things digital marketing, including search, social media, email, mobile and Analytics. Her core passions are content creation and small business strategy.

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