Content marketing is a rapidly growing trend in both B2B and B2C marketing. The pressure is on marketers to not only be knowledgeable about it as a marketing tactic, but to apply that theory to their daily roles. The understanding of this phenomenon can be split into three camps:
1. The first recognise the requirement for content, but haven’t fully adopted it or aren’t aware of the intricacies.
2. The second are using it but aren’t fully invested, as they believe it’s a phase that will soon pass.
3. The third are fully aware of how it can enrich any marketing strategy.
In this article, we will explore ten common myths surrounding content marketing – whilst revealing why so many companies get it wrong and how they can fix it.
Myth #1: Content marketing is expensive
Yes, content marketing does cost but so do many other forms of advertising and digital marketing. In comparison to other mediums, content marketing is worth its weight in gold for several reasons. Unlike digital, television and print, once you have created a strong piece of content, it can be reused and repurposed to give it a longer ‘shelf life’; for example a whitepaper could be broken down into smaller, more targeted portions. Hubspot explain “The Purpose of Repurposing” in their blog post.
Content is also more tangible than formats such as display advertising, for example. This means a user can re-access your content and be exposed to your brand multiple times, but for one set cost.
You must also consider the fact that content can be posted to blogs, social media and company websites for free. You can recycle and reuse our content multiple times and this can offset the initial outlay of getting the content produced.
Myth #2: More content is always better
Whilst it is true that having more content means having more chance of catching somebody’s eye, you should always focus on quality over quantity. And the same applies for the length of your articles too.
If you are able to concisely deliver your point in a short, well-written and easily digestible article, then this will be much more valuable than a series of lengthy, vague articles that don’t go into detail or provide your reader with enough information on the topic.
An abundance of content doesn’t necessarily mean a higher reach. Promotion is key and, without it, you could have a hundred pieces of content, but still only a tiny reach.
Myth #3: Your content marketing should be about your products and services
It’s great to include what you do within you content marketing. Promoting your products and services this way can be beneficial. But approach with caution.
The whole point of content marketing is to engage with your customers and provide them with something that they will both enjoy reading and more important, learn something from. If your company goes down the route of being too sales-heavy then you run the risk of potential customers simply switching off.
Instead, the whole aim of content marketing is try to provide value to your customers, such as problem solving and troubleshooting ‘how to’ guides. The upside is that if you create content of high enough value your potential customers will be willing to exchange their contact information in exchange for access to it – which will form the basis of a lead generation strategy.
Myth #4: Content marketing can be 100% automated
Yes, you can use marketing automation to make your life easier and tips and tricks such as using social aggregators to schedule your social media posts can be a godsend. But, you must be careful. If you use too much automation, you run the risk of becoming impersonal and robotic.
There is also a chance that you could totally miss the mark and make an automation faux pas too. You must ensure you are totally on the ball with current affairs, so as not to post any content that could create conflict or embarrass your company. Check out these 4 real life automation fails.
Myth #5: You can make content go viral
Wrong! You can’t make things go viral. Otherwise everybody would be doing it! You have more chance of going viral if you write an educational piece of content that people enjoy and find so useful, that they want to share it. But unless you have savvy promotion and great quality, going viral is more down to chance than strategy.
Myth #6: A piece of content has a short life
Content doesn’t necessarily have to have a short shelf life. If a piece isn’t based around current affairs or is date related (a seasonal report for example), then it can be easily repurposed and reused, as well as being updated to reflect current marketplace trends. A series of blog posts can also be amalgamated to create a ‘how to’ guide on a certain subject so when it comes to lifespans of content, it’s quite the contrary. Be creative and recycle, recycle, recycle!
Myth #7: Content marketing is just social media and blogging
Content marketing, blogging and social media are all related, but they are not interchangeable. Blogging and social media are great ways to promote your content, but not all content marketing is social and not all social media is content marketing.
For example, if you use social media regularly for your business, but you’re writing for no particular audience with no research to support your posts, you aren’t adhering to the fundamental basics of content marketing.
Also, don’t ignore other digital channels with your content marketing. Building up a following on email can deliver incredible results in terms of conversions in comparison to social campaigns. Leave yourself time to put together a monthly newsletter containing your content and send it to your email list.
Myth #8: Content marketing is SEO
Content marketing is not SEO. Rather, content marketing is a fantastic tactic to help with your SEO. A well written piece, full of long and short tail keywords can increase your search ranking. But you shouldn’t be doing content marketing to improve your SEO, it should be done to engage your customers and provide them with interesting and insightful pieces to interact with. See them as a match made in heaven, rather than the same thing.
Myth #9: Content marketing is just about content creation
Creating the content may take a lot of time and effort, but the same amount of energy (if not more) should be put into promoting it.
A content marketer should always have a sound strategy in place before they embark on a copywriting mission. Creating content for the sake of creating content and then trying to work out where to place it afterwards is a sure-fire way to waste time and resources.
Before putting pen to paper, ask yourself who the piece is intended for, how you can reach them and what type of content they are interested in.
Myth #10: Content marketing won’t stick around
Content marketing is not just a fad and ignoring it and hoping the hype will subside could be a huge mistake. Content marketing is hugely important for providing value to your users. By interacting with your content, brand associations and loyalties will be formed, leading to repeat custom.
Content marketing in the B2B arena is so important as it allows brands to create awareness, generate leads and increase conversion rates. Don’t miss out on the highly valuable content marketing bandwagon.
For more helpful advice on content marketing, download our free whitepaper: