Top 5 Traps to Avoid in Content Marketing
In a recent Clarity session, a client of mine was feeling a bit…stuck. She knew she had a great concept, but she wasn’t sure how to share it with potential customers.
And she’s not the only one.
At this point in almost every session, I have to hold clients back from falling into typical content marketing traps. So, I’ve summarized the Top 5 Traps I see for you lovely readers.
Whatever you do, avoid the urge to:
#1: Be a Copycat
We’re inundated with more content than ever before, so anything that feels “been there, done that” will be glossed over and lost in the crowd. Pinky promise.
Yes, it’s easier to identify a market need to fill, but you have to find your niche to be successful. But here’s the thing: your message is uniquely yours, you just have to let people hear it. Consider what you would say then make a gut check: could anyone say this?
But move forward with caution: diverting this first trap can set you up for a bit of a challenge in our #2 Trap.
#2: Get Out-of-Touch
Once you’ve identified what makes your content identifiable and ownable, you run a greater risk of sharing a bit too much, from technical jargon to lengthy posts.
No matter if you’re sharing your message online or in-store, I guarantee your customer is skimming. Literally everywhere. People don’t have time to review a thorough dissertation about your business. Your customers want to know you’re the expert, without having to become one themselves to interact with you.
Every message should be helpful first and foremost, and never challenging to read. All content should be quick to read and easy to understand. In your content marketing, think about who you’re talking to. Always speak their language and you’re sure to keep their loyalty.
#3: Lower Quality
As you go to great lengths to avoid Trap #2, keep a discerning lens on at all times. While colloquial content helps to connect with customers, you still want to always seem superior over your competitors. Because, you are.
No matter how much of an expert you are, if your content is poorly organized, unclear, or full of errors, you’ll seem like anything but. Craft original content to showcase your expertise and share relevant articles to let your customers you’re up-to-date and in-the-know.
#4: Be Un-Searchable
Even if you are saying something original, unique, and ownable, you must be findable. From targeted online advertisements to stopping in-store displays to strategically scheduled events, no matter where you’re communicating, meet your customers where they are. Get to know their habits then let them take the lead. They’ll show you where you need to be.
If you’re solely communicating in the digital space, our A to Z of Business Storytelling: Keywords blog post will improve your SEO.
#5: Talk At Your Readers
Quality content should always be compelling. But when my clients obsess over Tips 1-4 I see them, more often than not, talk at their customers, rather than encouraging engagement.
But the thing is, you can make your customers a part of your brand with call-to-actions and open communication. We now have the ability to have two-way communication with our customers at all times. Keep your message actionable so your audience is more apt to engage.
Before our Clarity session, my client had fallen for each of these traps. But with a bit of guidance, we dug her out of her content marketing rut. If you’re feeling unsteady and at risk of falling into these Top 5 Traps, schedule your very own Clarity session.