Top 12 Most Common Content Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

September 28, 2022

Top 12 Most Common Content Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

How confident are you that your current content marketing strategy is producing results? Did you know that nearly 50 per cent of all marketers are unable to answer this simple question? Let us take an in-depth look at 12 steps to avoid at all costs if you hope to leverage the true power of the digital business community. 

1. Failing to Regularly Publish Blogs

How often do you post blogs related to your products and services? While more than 500 million blogs currently exist, relatively few have adopted a proactive approach. This is important to highlight, as studies have shown that timely updates can produce up to 68 per cent more leads when compared to firms that fail to engage with their audience. 

Not only will blogs generate more interest in your website, but they can offer other advantages such as heightened inbound traffic, social media exposure and the ability to rank higher within search engine results pages (SERPs). It is therefore clear that active blogging represents one of the keys to long-term success. 

2. Not Taking Advantage of SMS and Email Marketing Possibilities

Email marketing is still one of the best ways to generate high-quality leads. Unfortunately, some businesses feel that this approach is outdated; instead favouring other tactics such as viral videos and affiliate advertising. It is important to note that SMS and email campaigns can still produce viable results if approached correctly. 

An efficient email marketing campaign can provide you with a solid base of subscribers. This is also an excellent way to build your brand identity while increasing loyalty over time. Thanks to the presence of automated platforms, formulating an efficient and insightful strategy has never been easier. Simply stated, never make the mistake of neglecting email and SMS marketing opportunities

3. A Weak Social Media Presence

Were you aware that up to 54 per cent of all consumers will use social media to determine if they wish to purchase a specific product or service? Word of mouth goes a long way today. Therefore every business (regardless of its size) should fully leverage the scope of these portals.

However, some businesses feel that they do not have the time to remain active on social media. This is a massive error, as countless opportunities will be missed. Monitoring these channels is one of the best ways to appreciate how a competitor is performing. Finally, the feedback gained through sites such as Facebook and Instagram is crucial if you hope to develop a well-honed marketing campaign. 

Neglecting social media will inevitably harm your online presence and in severe cases, it may even spell the difference between a failed venture and a successful business. 

4. Poor Grammar and Syntax

Many articles rightfully point out the importance of taking SEO into account when creating any type of written content. While we will touch on this subject later in our article, it is just as prudent to mention spelling and grammar mistakes. Proofreading is essential for several reasons and businesses which fail to perform this simple step are at risk of being perceived as sloppy or otherwise inattentive to detail.

It is always a good idea to review your content before it is posted. Some businesses are now choosing to outsource their content curation requirements to professional third-party firms. This can represent an excellent choice regarding quality and overall reliability. Simply stated, even a single misspelling or misplaced apostrophe will often detract from the quality of what it is that you have to offer.

5. Outdated SEO Strategies

Search engine optimisation (SEO) has represented one of the foundations of digital marketing strategies since their initial inception. Of course, times change. Techniques that might have been useful yesterday could be irrelevant today and outdated tomorrow. Therefore, keeping abreast of the latest trends is extremely important. However, some businesses always seem to be falling short of the mark.

There are several reasons why improper SEO strategies are still employed by businesses of all sizes. Some common scenarios include a lack of in-house resources, outdated HTML coding and failing to know that keyword requirement may have changed. These problems will hardly disappear on their own accord. Instead, real action must be taken. 

The first step is to look at some of the latest trends. One pertinent example includes keywords optimised for voice-powered searches. Some additional strategies include:

  • The presence of long-tail keywords.
  • The curation of content written for humans as opposed to search engines.
  • Regular website updates.
  • The use of relevant backlinks.
  • Ensuring that all HTML coding is correct.

Businesses that fail to leverage the techniques outlined above are destined to remain within the flotsam and jetsam of digital anonymity. 

6. Believing that "More is Better"

Throw enough jam on the wall in the hopes that some will stick. This common and erroneous marketing strategy is still employed by a disturbing number of online businesses. It is much more logical to create targeted marketing campaigns based on the desires of a discrete audience base. 

The main issue here is that massive amounts of material normally equates to lower levels of quality. It is instead wise to spend more time curating a well-written blog post or to make certain that the advertisement resonates with the end-user. Otherwise, the chances are high that your efforts will be falling on deaf ears. This will waste both time and money.

7. Irrelevant Content and Similar Types of "Fluff"

Similar to the point highlighted in the previous section, the creation of irrelevant material is another mistake to avoid at all costs. This primarily arises from failing to fully appreciate the needs and desires of the target demographic. After all, it makes little sense to spend a great deal of time developing a marketing campaign if it fails to reach the correct audience.

This is why a copious amount of research should take place when deciding on the framework associated with an upcoming marketing campaign. Here are a handful of questions to ask in advance:

  • What type of audience am I intending to target?
  • How are my products and services related to this sector?
  • Can I employ previous marketing data to hone my current campaign?

There is simply nothing worse than creating "fluff" or otherwise generic material simply to fill the margins of a page.

8. A Lack of Diversification

Take a moment to think about the number of channels that are used to promote what it is that you have to offer. Many businesses focus upon only a handful of portals as opposed to embracing a more circumspect approach. This is commonly referred to as multichannel marketing.

Different strategies can produce different results if you can diversify your ongoing approach. For instance, marketing on a professional portal such as LinkedIn will likely require unique tactics when compared to more "organic" platforms (Facebook and Instagram are two common examples). This is because you are catering to unique audiences.

The proverb "variations in the thread strengthen the weave" is perfectly appropriate in this sense. It is crucial to take advantage of all options at your disposal. These include webinars, blogs, social influencer marketing, website content, video advertising, and automated email campaigns. The same goes for face-to-face meetings and trade fairs.

Failing to appreciate the sheer variety of online marketing opportunities is similar to placing a billboard in the middle of a forest and becoming disappointed when you learn that no one is aware of it. While it is important to avoid spreading your current resources too thin, always remember that a wealth of possibilities exist within the digital domain. 

9. Unclear Content Goals

What is it that you are ultimately trying to achieve? Are you interested in generating interest? Do you hope to increase conversion rates or is brand awareness your top priority? Defining your goals will enable you to develop a well-honed marketing campaign from the beginning. 

These and similar KPIs (key performance indicators) can also help you to determine if a strategy is heading in the right direction or if it may require a bit of "fine-tuning". This is why an impressive 65 per cent of all content marketing specialists have developed a clear strategy that is flexible enough to accommodate changing scenarios. 

Some steps to include when adopting such an approach include identifying your buyer persona (mentioned earlier), using the correct keywords, creating quality content, and obtaining feedback from customers (extremely important step). Without establishing concise goals, it is impossible to see the insight and clarity required to make informed decisions at the appropriate times.

10. Forgetting to Optimise for Mobile Users

Many individuals are now utilising their smartphones to access the online community. While this observation is certainly nothing new, the concept of a mobile-responsive website design still eludes some budding digital businesses. What features are associated with a responsive portal?

First and foremost, all content should display in the same manner as it would when viewed with a standard computer. This includes videos, images, page layouts, and written content. Most responsive designs likewise support long-scrolling text formats and they enable users to zoom in on specific content so that it can be more easily viewed with a smaller display screen. 

If a website is not formatted in such a manner as to support a mobile audience, its credibility will suffer as a direct result. The chances are also high that a would-be customer may look elsewhere for similar products or services if your site fails to load properly. We can now appreciate the importance of embracing a mobile-responsive edge within today's digital community. 

11. Low Levels of Customer Engagement

Most businesses love getting feedback from happy customers. However, what about those who are less than satisfied with their experiences? Relatively few enterprises choose to engage with this segment; instead opting to ignore their feedback in the hopes that it will not be seen by others. This is a serious mistake. You can learn a lot from unsatisfied customers as they can help you improve your ways of business. 

Modern consumers place a great deal of importance on transparency. Therefore, make it a point to reach out to those who were less than satisfied in the past. This approach will result in two beneficial outcomes:

  • You can modify existing sales or marketing strategies so that the same reviews will be less likely to take place in the future.
  • Customers will appreciate that your business values the overall end-user experience.

As you may have already guessed, this is when the sheer breadth of social media comes into play. Make it a point to regularly monitor these channels (social listening) and to actively engage with visitors when needed. 

12. Forgetting About Analytics

Let us assume for a moment that you are fully confident in your ongoing marketing strategy. Do statistics back up this perspective? While analytics are rather technical, they are essential if you ever hope to interpret the results of your actions. Trusted third-party services such as Anaconda, RapidMiner Studio and Google Analytics can work wonders if you wish to better appreciate how your efforts have been performing in recent times. 

Furthermore, these services can provide additional information such as weighted keywords, the number of inbound website hits and even the performance of your closest competitors. It, therefore, makes perfect sense to leverage the scope of these utilities. 

A Concerted Effort

Avoiding the 12 mistakes mentioned is the best way to make the most out of what the online community has to offer. With time and effort, you will be able to rise above the masses and enjoy levels of success that could have been out of reach in the past.

Author bio: Paul Towler is the technical operations director at SmartOffice, a software automation provider that helps companies with their document management systems.

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