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Five ways to miss the content marketing bus

Five ways to miss the content marketing bus

March 18, 2013 by Sharon Tanton

Five ways to miss the content marketing bus/london busThere’s no doubt about it, the business world has woken up to marketing with valuable content as a way of attracting leads and boosting sales. But while everyone is talking about it, not everyone is getting it right.

Here are five ways I’ve seen businesses missing the content marketing bus:

1. No strategy

Producing content left, right and centre might produce a lot of noise, but unless the content has a purpose it won’t get you very far. Businesses who win with content marketing have clear aims and objectives — new pieces of content build a library that tells a story and demonstrates expertise in a niche. Scattergun content is a waste of time and effort.

2. Not listening

Creating content in a vacuum, without listening to clients and customers, won’t get you out of the bus terminal. Content that answers your clients’ specific questions will get found and appreciated. If they’re not looking for it, how will they find it?

3. Shoddy stuff

Quality matters. The bar has been raised and just good enough isn’t good enough any more. Quality means content must be well-designed, well-produced and well-written. It should be easy on the eye and a joy to consume.

4. Being boring

If you want to grab attention your content can’t be dull. Brilliant content will lurk undiscovered beneath snoozesome headlines, the most amazing articles in the world might never be read if presented in unremitting slabs of web-unfriendly fonts. And if you want to guarantee no one will ever read your blog, illustrate it with that jigsaw pieces image you’ve seen a thousand times before.

5. Not diversifying

If all your content is written, you’re in danger of getting left out in the cold. Only write blogs? You’ve got to give video a go. Or podcasting. Or infographics. Or Slide Share. If you want your content to get picked up and shared, make it easy to consume in a variety of ways across a range of devices. If a sizeable chunk of your content is not mobile-friendly, it will miss the bus.

Sharon Tanton is an expert contributor to Marketing Donut, creative director at Valuable Content and co-author, with Sonja Jefferson, of Valuable Content Marketing.

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