11 Top Content Marketing Mistakes

The benefits of hopping on the content marketing train are so obvious that most people are eager to get started. The problem is that many business owners get demoralized when they don’t see the results they expect from their efforts. Content marketing works and is highly cost-effective, provided you’re not making any of the following content marketing mistakes.

Mistake #1: Developing Content from Your Perspective

You’re so familiar with your products and services that it may be difficult to see your offerings the way your prospects do. 

If you want your content marketing investment to pay off, you must understand how your ideal customers see your offerings.

  • What is the problem your ideal clients are trying to solve?
  • What are they struggling with?
  • What matters most to them? 

Make sure your content focuses on your customers’ needs, not your own opinions. 

Mistake #2: Dull Content

There’s plenty of snooze-worthy content around.  Don’t bore your readers; engage them with compelling narratives that speak to their needs.

If you want to see what’s working well, sign up for BuzzSumo and discover content that has a strong track record of strong performance.

Mistake #3: Developing Content No One Is Searching For

If you’re creating content for a website that will depend on organic traffic, find out if anyone is searching for that content. A helpful free tool that I recommend is Answer the Public (ATP). With this tool, you simply type in one or two words related to a subject you intend to develop content around, and ATP shows you relevant questions people are typing into search engines.

To take your content marketing to the next level, I highly recommend investing in a professional content research tool. My favorite is Ahrefs, which helps you easily discover relevant keywords, track search volume, and understand the difficulty of ranking for various keywords. Ahrefs will also help you identify content that’s ranking well and monitor how well your website content is ranking on Google.

ahrefs keyword tool
My favorite content marketing research tool is ahrefs. Image source: ahrefs.com

Mistake #4: Failure to Engage with Content Users

If you’re creating content and posting it on a social platform, don’t forget to be social.  Encourage discussions. Answer questions. Offer helpful comments and suggestions.

Mistake #5: Expecting Results Too Soon

Content marketing is like planting perennial seeds: you can’t expect to see flowers overnight, but with care and nurturing, results will come. The better the content (and the better you become at finding your ideal audience), the more likely it is to be shared, yielding even better results in the long run.

Mistake #6: Off-Brand Content

There needs to be continuity in the content you develop. Every item you create must reflect your brand’s values and identity. This ensures that users immediately recognize the content as yours, helping you build brand awareness and authority across all your content.

Mistake #7: Visually Unappealing Content

You don’t have to spend a fortune to develop content.  Tools like CanvaPicMonkey, and Designrr allow you to create professional-quality visuals on your own, even if you’re on a shoestring budget. 

If you’re graphic design challenged, then invest in hiring an agency, virtual assistant, or freelancer to help you.  

Mistake #8: Inadequate Content Promotion

Imagine creating a piece of content that’s absolutely spectacular and then only telling one person about it.  Doesn’t make sense, right?  If you want a lot of people to know about your content, make sure you promote your content multiple times in multiple places.

popular content promotion tactics

Mistake #9: Underestimating the Importance of SEO

If you’re creating content for your website, then you need to understand how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) works.

Implementing good SEO techniques will improve your visibility in search engines. This in turn increases the odds that people who are searching for what you offer — but don’t know about you — will find you. 

Brian Dean of Backlinko created a free online SEO tutorial that teaches you everything you need to know about SEO fundamentals.  Even better, it’s free.

Mistake #10: Failure to Include a Call-to-Action (CTA)

What do you want your content users to do after they’ve consumed your content?  Perhaps you want them to sign up for a free trial or call you for a complimentary consultation.  Maybe you want them to subscribe to your YouTube channel or start following you on Instagram.   

Wise content marketers keep their users engaged by offering a strong CTA — which in laymen’s terms means telling your prospective clients what you want them to do next.  Keeping your readers engaged is key to landing big sales.

example of a call to action
The personal growth website Believe And Create offers a free journal as a CTA for readers of their happiness-related content.

Mistake #11: Failure to Track Results

You can waste a lot of time and money by creating content that fails to capture your ideal audience’s interest or attention.  That’s why you need to track and measure results. Be sure to set up appropriate tracking codes on your content and review measurable results such as ratio of leads to conversions, audience growth, number of views, and cost per conversion.  [Read 14 Content Marketing KPIs You Should Be Tracking]  

Need some help with your content strategy? Just give is a shout-out and we'll come a running.

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