Content marketing is the next big thing in the realm of digital marketing. Just like the development of social media marketing in recent years, it seems every brand, small business and website is delving into the world of content marketing. But why shouldn’t they? It’s important.
Similar to search engine optimisation and social media, there are various myths being perpetrated on the unsuspecting public. Many people purport that it’s just a fad, it doesn’t take skill and it’s another form of blogging. However, this is an incorrect notion because, like any other industry, it does take a great deal of acumen and know-how to create content for the purposes of marketing.
For digital marketers and small business considering incorporating content marketing into their overall business strategies, it’s important to first identify some of the most popular fibs and then how to overcome these false notions.
The myths regarding content marketing can be likened to "The Mikado": "Your notions, though many, are not worth a penny."
Here are five myths about content marketing and how to overcome them:
1. Anyone Can Do Content Marketing
Anyone can paint. Anyone can play basketball. Anyone can cook. Unfortunately, not everyone can perform these very well. Not every single person living on this planet can paint like Edvard Munch, play basketball like Michael Jordan or cook like Gordon Ramsay. This is why these men were and still are iconic.
The same thing can be applied to content marketing. Small business owners have erroneously had the idea that they can produce content marketing pieces. As time went by, they realised their errors and sought out professional writers and marketers. To produce content marketing material, you have to be adept at researching, finding the most relevant and up-to-date information and understanding how to put words on a page that are engaging and helpful.
How to Overcome This Myth: search for professional digital marketers or post an ad on oDesk or Elance and hire a professional freelance writer. Your small business won’t regret it.
2. Content Marketing Will Soon Perish
For years, it has regularly been pontificated that SEO will meet its utter demise. We’re now in 2015 and SEO is more important than it ever has been. Nowadays, some people actually believe content marketing is a fad and will soon die off. However, considering that Google is welcoming content marketing with open arms and every business is focusing on this realm, content marketing is here to stay.
How to Overcome This Myth: don’t listen to the critics and instead employ a full-blown marketing initiative that inserts content marketing into your strategy.
3. Blogging is the Only Type of Content Marketing
To the neophytes, any piece of content on the Internet is blogging. Once again, they are mistaken. Digital content comes in a wide spectrum of different forms, such as articles, infographics, webinars, white papers, case studies and so on. A blog, meanwhile, is something that is a personal diary of sorts where you can express yourself in either short bursts of information or long, detailed posts.
How to Overcome This Myth: it’s important for any small business to maintain a blog. It shows the personal side of your brand and can assist in engaging with your customers. On the other hand, you must also initiate various kinds of content, like articles, webinars and ebooks, to garner a larger reader base.
4. Content Marketing Doesn't Boost Sales
Who knows where this myth came from? There is a plethora of data contradicting this fallacy. Here are just four statistics - there are plenty more - to show that content marketing really does boost a company’s sales:
- 80 percent of business decision makers prefer to receive information through articles instead of advertisements.
- 78 percent of consumers believe businesses providing custom content are interested in building relationships with their customers.
- Half of consumers’ time spent online is engaging with custom content.
- 60 percent of businesses say the ROI on their content marketing is increasing.
How to Overcome This Myth: with the right content marketing strategy, you can immediately boost sales. It is a measurable strategy and should be one that is considered to bring value to readers and customers as opposed to just a sales gimmick.
5. More Content the Merrier
Depending upon whom you speak with, this idea can be greatly debated. Some people feel more is better while others feel the quality is far more important than quantity. With that being said, readers can find one 750-word article with a large number of details a lot more valuable than 10 1,200-word articles with a lot of fluff and irrelevant and outdated statistics and information.
How to Overcome This Myth: this one is purely up to you. If you feel you can publish 15 2,000-word articles within a week that are high-quality and attractive, then you can simply try it. But be sure to remember this important point: never, ever sacrifice quality for quantity.
Content marketing is still in its infancy period. The scheme still has time to grow, cultivate and expand its reach. With thousands of professional advertisers and brands still perfecting this craft each day, we’re likely to learn about it more as time goes by. For now, take advantage of its popularity and be one of the leading pioneers moving forward.