Your content marketing isn’t working the way you’d hoped it would, and you’re not sure why. It could be one of these seven reasons—or it could be something else entirely, but there are some things you can do to improve your situation if any of these apply to you. You might even find that all seven apply! If that happens, it might just be time to take a step back and reevaluate your goals and your strategies before moving forward with another content campaign. 1.) You aren’t using real people in your content.

It doesn’t have a clear target

If you’re talking to your current customers, that’s great. But if you want new customers, then start talking to them in a way they understand. Keep your tone relatable and provide quick solutions that speak directly to their pains and frustrations. You can do all of that without sacrificing who you are or what your company is about. If you don’t know who your target audience is, get clear on it right away.

Its tone isn’t consistent

Tone is key when it comes to presenting your content, and one person’s lighthearted might be another person’s tacky. Make sure that everyone who works on your team understands how to nail tone—from editorial staffers writing for your site all the way up to C-suite executives crafting company-wide emails. If you can, take a step back from each project and give a quick read-through, asking yourself if you would want to read what you just wrote. Doing so will make it easier for others (including fellow team members) to see if they’re staying true to your brand’s voice.

It doesn’t solve their problems

No one likes being told what to do or how to do it. That’s why content marketing works best when you help your audience overcome their problems by serving them with value that speaks directly to their challenges and goals. After all, if you solve their problems, they’ll be more willing to listen to your message. If you don’t, they probably won’t stick around long enough for a second bite of content marketing.

It isn’t consistent in its quality

Let’s face it—some days you don’t feel like putting your best foot forward. But if you plan on getting repeat customers and acquiring new ones, you need to make sure that your content is consistently good. If a reader can’t trust what they read when they land on your site, there’s little chance that they will return. Make a commitment to providing quality content and holding yourself accountable for what goes out from your brand’s mouthpiece.

It doesn’t provide enough value

It’s not a secret that people only care about what they get out of something. If your content isn’t providing them with any value, there’s no reason for them to stick around. So before you even start to worry about marketing or promoting your posts, make sure you’re making it worthwhile for readers from start to finish. You can do that by providing useful information, advice and tips. At a minimum, every post should provide two pieces of information: one point that your audience will find useful and a call-to-action at some point within the piece that asks for an email address or encourages social sharing. This also includes having an enticing title (see next item).

The information is old

The key to good content marketing is fresh, on-point information that engages your target audience. Make sure you’re not promoting a product or service more than three years old. Create products regularly: As an entrepreneur, it’s easy to get caught up in creating new products without thinking about how often you should be creating them. It can be helpful to go into business with a certain frequency in mind—such as once every two months or once a quarter—and then build that release schedule into your overall plan. Without consistent releases, customers will forget about your brand and move on to others. You’re not creating unique enough content: Once a week isn’t enough! Customers are surrounded by advertisements 24/7, so what makes yours stand out?

There aren’t enough calls to action

The reason calls to action are so effective is that they’re clear and focused. If you want readers to do something, tell them exactly what you want them to do. A single sentence can do it – as long as it isn’t too vague or complex. If readers don’t know what you want them to do, then there’s a good chance they won’t do anything at all. So be specific with your CTAs and try using numbers (such as register now for 10% off) where appropriate, in order to get clickthroughs.

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