Content Marketing Is An Overhyped Marketing Strategy
Content Marketing Is Over- Hyped
I’ve just finished reading an article by Steve Tobak from entrepreneur.com who argues strongly that content marketing is without a doubt the most over-hyped marketing tool for entrepreneurs and business owners and while I don’t agree with everything he said he does make some valid points.
There’s Content Marketing and Then There’s Crap Content
So let’s cut through the BS and get to the truth about content marketing. I agree with his arguments that there is content and there is content. From my observations a lot of contents is mediocre and just a rehash of things that everyone already knows.
This is definitely the case in the online marketing industry. The majority of content marketers are content to regurgitate rather than originate. The truth is not every one is an expert and most of the posts I see being promoted across social media channels are merely rip offs of the original content by real experts.
There is so much noise from all the crap, but don’t be fooled, Google’s algorithms can spot the difference between quality content and keyword stuffed articles, so if your goal is to rank in the search engines don’t rehash, develop quality. Anything short of quality and you’re wasting your time.
So what is good quality
In the internet marketing game good quality content is derived from research into best practice, implementation of traffic strategies and publishing of case study results. Sure in my game you can learn a lot from following industry influencers like Hubspot‘s Dharmesh Shah and SEM Rush’s Trevor Hatfield, and sure you can glean some useful take-aways that are definitely worth sharing, but if the goal of your content marketing is to position yourself as an industry expert or market leader. you need to take the time to conduct your own research and provide meaningful information that your target audience can use to help them make informed decisions.
With that being said it doesn’t matter what industry or niche you are in, to win the confidence of your target audience your content needs to add value. By value I mean your content needs to clearly highlight your brand or products unique selling proposition. You need to demonstrate a value proposition that clearly sets you product apart from the competition.
Don’t believe the hype, Content Marketing Without Strategy Is Worthless
On this point I couldn’t agree more. For many small to midsize businesses content marketing is seen as a cheap and easy alternative to paid advertising. Many have jumped on the content marketing bandwagon as a result of hearing or reading about the success stories of others, but what many, would be. content marketers fail to realize is that behind those successes is a well orchestrated content strategy. Simply creating random content based on a little keywords research in an attempt to drive traffic will get you nowhere. The truth is a lot of of small businesses attempting an inbound content based strategy are failing because they don’t align all of their content towards a clearly defined and specified strategic campaign.
Successful content marketing strategy is about developing both wider strategic, long term SEO goals and campaign driven short term goals. The secret to achieving the short term goal of individual campaign success is to align all of your marketing to a dedicated product or service drive designed to target a specific customer group.
A good example of a strong, content driven campaign strategy is that of Dragon Wealth. Dragon Wealth sell a software solution to help financial planners and wealth managers generate and manage leads. They instituted a series of blog posts that specifically targeted the pain of wealth managers. Each blog post spoke to a different pain point and contained a CTA to discover more about their technology based solutions.
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Sure if we examine the way big companies conduct content marketing you will discover that there is a group of senior executives and product experts working closely with professional marketing agencies to develop their marketing strategy, but and believe me this isn’t cheap.
Does this mean, as Steve Tobak suggests, that an effective content marketing strategy is beyond the capabilities of a small company with limited resources and a small budget? I think not. But what should a small company wishing to engage in a content marketing strategy do?
A Few Content Marketing Strategy Ideas For Small Businesses
Step one is to understand how a content driven inbound marketing campaign is designed and delivered. To make this step easy download my free 5 step guide to inbound marketing campaigns now. In this ebook I outline everything you will need to do to get started.
Step two is to look around your office. I’m sure you have plenty of content and useful information that can be re-purposed and converted into blog posts. However if you;re not confident, there are plenty of excellent content creation service providers who can help you develop SEO friendly blog posts and premium content for you CTA’s. One of my favorites is Scripted. Scripted offers very affordable freelance writing services to small companies to get their content marketing efforts off the ground.
There is no doubt that a well planned and executed content marketing campaign delivers results, but it requires great attention to detail in all aspects of strategic planning, contents creation, content promotion and channel monitoring. For a small business the decision to move to an inbound, content driven marketing strategy is one that needs some consideration as there needs to not only be an investment in content creation but also in the technology to capture your leads, monitor their activities and nurture them through to sales.
Small business also needs to understand that while a content driven strategy can deliver outstanding results is not a quick fix and not everyone who ventures don the content strategy road succeeds. It takes time and effort to generate meaningful results.
As a final note I’m curious to hear about your experience with content marketing strategy. Is your content marketing strategy working? Is your time and effort delivering a good ROI on your investment? For many I think not, but I’d love to hear your views both good and bad.
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