According to Demand Metric, content marketing costs 62 percent less than traditional marketing and generates three times as many leads. That one stat alone makes a compelling case for content marketing, but as with all things in life, if it's worth doing, it's worth doing well. Here are six mistakes to avoid as you either embark on or continue your content marketing efforts.
1. Not creating content consistently. The quantity versus quality debate rages on in many content marketing circles, but we think both sides win. To be the most successful at content marketing, you need to create high-quality content on a consistent basis. A content calendar is a must for marketing teams looking to create content consistently. We have a great blog post that talks about the process of creating that calendar along with a template you can download here.
2. Not repurposing content. If you aren't repurposing content, you aren't getting the most of every eBook you publish, blog post you write or video you create. You're also spending more time than necessary creating content. While not all content is suitable for repurposing because it is or will quickly become outdated, there is a good chance that you have evergreen content that can be transformed from a webinar to a YouTube video or blog posts into a white paper, for example. Get helpful tips for repurposing content in this blog post.
3. Not understanding your audience. Successful content marketing requires knowing your audience and what they want. After all, if you know who you are talking to, it is much easier to say the right things. That's the idea behind personas, and how they can help your organization achieve content marketing success. In marketing terms, a persona is a fictional person that represents your ideal buyer, and you can see a snapshot example of what they look like below. CRM and web analytics data along with customer surveys and interviews can help you develop personas for your customers, thus helping you create more targeted content.
4. Not mapping content to the buying cycle. In order to connect with and convert customers, content has to speak to where individuals are in the buying cycle and take into consideration the journey from lead to customer. Otherwise, you risk alienating leads and customers by not addressing their needs at that moment in time. For example, a guide for first time homebuyers is more appropriate for someone in the research phase of the buying cycle than someone who just closed on their first home. You can read more about content and the buying cycle here.
5. Not providing variety. As you produce content for your company, keep in mind that everyone learns and prefers to consume content in different ways. If you're only producing eBooks or blog posts, for example, you're likely missing an opportunity to connect with certain leads and customers. Try diversifying your content mix for better results. Visual content such as videos, infographics or SlideShare presentations can help provide the variety you need to appeal to a wider range of interests and learning styles, and help your content marketing efforts be more successful.
6. Not measuring and reporting. What's your most popular eBook? How many downloads did your last white paper get? How many views does your latest video have? If you don't know the answer to those questions and others related to content performance, it's hard to know what is working and what isn't for your organization. While success will be measured in different ways for different types of content, have methods in place for gathering and reporting data so you can continuously improve your content marketing strategy.
Ready to learn more about achieving content marketing success? Download a free copy of our eBook, Hooked on Content: Developing a Successful Content Marketing Strategy with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.