Since 2009 I've written a lot about content marketing, and how it can grow your business. The brilliant thing about content is that it works for you 24/7, never takes a sickie, a duvet day or a holiday. It works non-stop for you. However, there are a few things you need to know before you pin all your hopes and dreams on your next content marketing campaign.
10 Things That You Do That Destroys Your Content Marketing
Despite knowing that done is better than perfect, you cling onto the idea of the perfect blog post, the perfect Pinterest Pin, the perfect headline… Need I go on? You need to let go of perfectionism and get your content out. You won't ever know if it works if you keep your content on your hard drive gathering digital dust. Perfectionism is a form of procrastination. Stop flitting between perfection and publishing, and just press publish.
You love pink. You insist on pink in your branding. Pink is a power colour. You have everything content in pink. Despite the fact your pink website has a high bounce rate (the colour repels your audience), you continue to use it. You invest in more software, more coaches and all of them tell you that you can be you… But not one of them tells you that your stubbornness is killing your business. Clinging to the pink is holding you back. Acknowledge and change or you will be kept in a rut by stubbornness.
It's not the colour pink that's the problem. It's what pink represents. It's what you're clinging too and refusing to let go of that's the problem. Fail, fail fast and move on. You will learn more from failing than you will by remaining stubborn.
8. Staying in learn mode
I love knowledge. I adore learning. I learn at a rapid pace. But what I do better than anyone else is I deploy my learning. As fast as I learn something, I'm doing it. This isn't the way most people are wired. In fact, some people would say I'm the only person that's wired this way. But learning and doing are skills. And if you can learn to learn, you can learn to implement and take action. It's a step out of your comfort zone, but they're called comfort zones for a reason. If you stay in learning mode your content marketing will never deliver on its promise. Knowledge isn't power. The application of knowledge is.
If you don't know how to kick yourself out of the learning rut, book a call with me. I'll soon get you doing things with your content.
7. Being Cheap
Bootstrapping is fine, and I'm all for it, but cheap for the sake of being cheap will kill your content marketing. It starts with images, as you see them as expensive instead of a digital asset that markets your business endlessly. You'll spend hours looking for the perfect free image. When you could have the perfect image for a dollar in a couple of clicks.
Being cheap keeps you poor. One of the biggest complaints people had with the blogging challenge wasn't that blogging is hard (because I make it easy) it was that they had more website traffic and had to get better hosting.
I use Thrive Leads for my website optin. I love all the things it can do, like category optins, tag optins and smart exit (it only shows when the reader is about to leave). The tool is very low cost for the value it brings. It's $67 a year. The amount of moaning I hear from people in communities that a tool is paid for, and they don't have the money for the features that they want is incredible.
If you want your content to give a great experience you cannot be cheap. That doesn't mean buying everything, it means making informed choices. I get incredible value from Active Campaign compared to Mailchimp. It took 5 years for Mailchimp to get some of the benefits that Active Campaign has. Why would I hold back by business growth by waiting? I wouldn't. But you might.
6. ooo shiny!
Closely related to being cheap is buying every darn shiny thing on the planet. I still have moments of this but they're less and less these days. If you're constantly searching for the magic pill that's all you'll do. Not all that glitters is gold. It's called shiny for a reason. If you have too much shiny you forget about what your content goals are.
It's been said that everything you want is on the other side of fear. They're right. When you let go of perfectionism, you're letting go of the ego that's in your work. When you stop being stubborn and start being open to what your audience wants… When you take action… When you stop being cheap and you're no longer in the thrall of shiny you'll find that you fear fewer things and start achieving what you want.
4. Your Mindset
Closely related to being cheap, your money mindset will come and bite you on the backside if you don't take care of it. If no one is investing in your high-level programs it's not the fault of your content. It's you. Fix it.
3. Cutting Corners
I debated putting this in here as I feel it crosses with shiny object syndrome. Cutting corners is where you deploy before you're ready and you're trying to fix a f*ck up. You cut corners on an image. You borrow it from someone else's website. You think you're cutting a corner, but you're actually stealing. Yup, you're actually committing theft. Karma has a bigger bite than your money mindset.
Take Jay Shetty as an example. He “borrowed” other people's content and didn't credit them (although I understand this is now being done retrospectively), and the fall out was huge. He cut corners. His content team cut corners. He damaged his reputation because he didn't do things the right way.
If you are compromising your morals, your values or yourself then it's not worth cutting the corner.
2. Not knowing the difference between busy and productive
I'm told that blogging is busy work. That content is busy work. This is said by the people who want to sell you something. Usually content or blogging products. Writing is therapeutic. It heals you. It processes your thoughts properly, it helps your memory. This not busy-work this is a personal growth tool. It's why so many C-suite executives blog and write powerful articles on LinkedIn. It's influence at its finest.
Knowing what content to create makes you productive. Understanding the motivation behind your content helps you be more productive.
Day-dreaming about your post going viral? That's just busy work in disguise.
1. Not Valuing People.
If you don't value your readers, then your content marketing fails.
- If your content is light and doesn't give value you're not valuing people.
- If you don't invite your readers to take the next step with you, then you're not valuing them.
- If you bait and switch with your headlines you're not respecting your audience.
You don't need me to spell out how bad that is for your content marketing, do you?
Is this post pressing your buttons? Share it on social media and debate why you're right and I'm wrong. Because great content is always about the conversation.
If this post is getting you hot under your collar, and you want to do something about it, then book a call with me here.