Content marketing: the strategic creation, publishing and promotion of valuable content to attract leads and turn them into buyers.
Sounds simple, right? Well, if you’ve ever tried it you’ll know it’s the farthest thing from easy.
Many brands get tripped up on the writing and don’t go any further.
Well, I don’t want to scare you, but creating content is just the first of the hurdles you’ll need to jump over to reach the content marketing finish line.
Challenge #1: Creating quality content that your readers will care about.
Your visitors become your buyers. But for that to happen, you’ll need to capture and keep their interest. What does your target audience care about? Identify your prospect’s needs — then write to them — and you’ll be more likely to convince them to return to your site again and again. (A critical goal, since the more content of yours they read, the more likely they’ll be to feel they know, like and trust you.)
Challenge #2: Publishing content consistently.
Unfortunately, creating a piece of content isn’t a “one-and-done” accomplishment; it’s not like mountain-climbing, where you can summit the big peak and then cross an item off your bucket list.
To conquer Content Mountain, you need to climb up, connect with your visitors at the peak — and then climb back down and start all over again.
Constantly. At regular intervals.
A daunting mission, to say the least.
Challenge #3: Measuring your content’s effectiveness.
OK, so let’s say you’re creating content and you’re doing so regularly. Perfect…
Unless you’re wasting your time. But how can you know? How can you tell if your content is truly valuable?
This is where even a baseline understanding of measurement and analytics can come in handy. What does your website traffic look like? Do readers stay on your pages for an amount of time that might indicate your content is being read? How do incoming leads correlate with what you’ve been posting lately? Is your content getting shared on social media?
Make what you can of the numbers and data you have, and examine social signals to try to find what resonates with your readers. Then strive to create more of it.
Challenge #4: Keeping your content marketing interesting.
Your relationship with your readers is like any other relationship — you need to introduce some variety once in a while to keep their interest.
Audiences get bored when they read the same kinds of posts over and over.
If you can, mix things up with infographics, downloads, videos and podcasts—instead of relying solely on written content.
Challenge #5: Finding the resources to get it all done.
Quality content is not cheap, especially when you consider having to create enough of it to make a lasting impact. Consider a monthly outsourcing budget to consistently cover your content needs.
As you observe what’s working and what’s not, direct more of your content budget toward the good stuff.
Over time, this money will pay for itself in increased leads, better conversions and more repeat business.
What’s your content marketing challenge?
Content marketing is no walk in the park, but if you’re committed to executing — or to finding someone to help you — you can reap big rewards.
Sometimes all it takes is reaching out for advice to someone who does it every day. (Ahem).
What’s your biggest content marketing challenge?