Content marketing is marketed as a strategy that any business can do, regardless of its size, scope and budget. It’s true: It doesn’t take many resources to publish a blog post on your website every few weeks. Yet, while everyone can do content marketing, almost no one can do content marketing right — unless they have a content expert by their side.
You don’t need to develop a full-fledged, in-house content marketing strategy team, but you do need to make good use of an experienced and knowledgeable content marketer. Here’s what could happen if you don’t.
You Don’t Produce Enough Content
Content marketing works its magic slowly and steadily over months and even years — but that doesn’t mean you can be lazy with your production. Posting a new blog every few weeks won’t gain you a loyal audience, and it certainly won’t improve your ranking on the SERPS. What’s more, generating only one type of content isn’t always advisable, especially as most and more web users prefer more engaging content like videos and slideshows.
The truth is that you need to be aggressive with content generation, publishing new and relevant content on a regular and frequent schedule. Because content marketing isn’t your job, you probably don’t have the time to devote to such an effort — which is why you need to hire an expert.
You Don’t Optimize Your Content for Search
Content for content’s sake is great, but content that entertains, educates and engages your audience while improving your search engine rankings is even better. SEO content isn’t easy to produce, even though SEO rules seem somewhat straightforward. Not all content marketers are skilled in SEO, but it would behoove you to find and work with one that does, like Digital Current.
You Don’t Produce High-Quality Content
Not all content is created equal. Some content engages your audience, boosts your search rankings and improves your bottom line; other content just consumes your budget, eats up your time and wastes space on your website. Unfortunately, if you aren’t working with a content marketing expert, you are most likely to produce the latter.
Content marketing novices notoriously make egregious mistakes with their content. Some common issues include:
- Posting duplicate content. It might seem like you can save time and energy by recycling content around your website and social pages, but Google’s spiders will recognize duplicate content and penalize you for it.
- Stuffing keywords. A major component of SEO is keywords, which help Google pair search queries with related content. Unfortunately, using keywords too much in your content will cause you problems.
- Posting brief, irrelevant content. Google likes content to be just-so, falling within a certain length and format. Still, posting “fluff” pieces that don’t offer any value is certainly a bad idea.
What counts as “good” content will vary from industry to industry, and even from year to year. You need to be able to rely on a the best content marketing firms to help you understand what high-quality content is and how to consistently produce it.
Your Content Doesn’t Say Anything
We’ve already established that your content needs to be relevant to your industry and your audience, but in addition, your content needs to provide a cohesive message about your business, your products and your brand. Unfortunately, in an attempt to generate this cohesive message, many business leaders merely recycle and reproduce the same content on multiple channels — and duplicate content isn’t any good. It takes experience and savvy to tie in the same branding elements and messages into all of the content involved in a marketing strategy, and that experience and savvy is typically found only in content marketing pros.
Your Content Isn’t Strategic
You need to consistently produce strategic and high-quality content. Content marketing is equal parts art and science. The content itself requires significant amounts of creativity to generate, from the first stages of brainstorming to the finishing touches before publication. However, successful content marketing campaigns rely heavily on data and analysis; you need to track your content to better understand how it performs and how you can improve on your results.
Many business leaders are either artsy or analytical. Few are proficient at combining these aptitudes in the same field to develop a comprehensive strategy that will achieve the organization’s goals. Even if you think you have the ability to combine your creative and pragmatic sides, it doesn’t hurt to have an expert by your side providing guidance as you learn the content marketing ropes.
Like many other aspects of business, content marketing seems easy but is in fact a difficult and nuanced practice that requires specific training and experience to evince desired results. Whether this is your first stab at content marketing or merely your most recent attempt, you should seek the services of a content marketing expert.