It’s becoming increasingly difficult to run an online business without having a blog. But while blogging is growing in value as an Internet marketing tool, many small businesses have yet to fully understand it and take full advantage of its capabilities.
Content of course is king, and it’s also the key to growing your business. If you’ve been using content as part of your marketing campaigns, but you have yet to see it work for you, don’t give up now.
Your content strategy may just need a little bit of tweaking. Here are some of the biggest reasons that businesses are seeing their content strategy fail to pay off.
1. Content is embarrassingly self-promotional
Your content should always provide value to your audience, not your business. The reason your customers should care about you and read your content is because they want to glean something that is useful for them, not become enthralled by your greatness.
That’s why, when you create content, remind yourself always to appeal to your customers. Strive to find out what your target audience wants, what they are looking for, what makes their lives difficult, and how you can make things better for them.
If people read nothing in your content but how much you want them to buy your product, they’ll leave you for good.
To measure the effectiveness of your content, set up Google Analytics. This enables you to see who reads your content, who shared it and on which social media site, which and what type of content delivered the most traffic to your site, and how long people lingered over your blog content.
2. Failure to determine the goal of your content
As they say, for every endeavor, you should begin with the end in mind. Do you know the goal that you wish to achieve with your content? What do you hope to gain? What do you wish for your customers to achieve with your content?
To help you set goals for your content strategy, consider the following:
If your goal is to establish brand awareness, make certain that all your content displays consistency. Talk about the main problems that your product solves. Make mention of your brand on a regular basis without resorting to becoming overly promotional.
Be consistently useful. Keep your consumers in the know about the latest news surrounding your industry and brand.
3. Making it difficult to share your content
Let’s say you’ve created a great piece of content. If you’ve made it hard for people to share it after they’ve seen how terrific it is, there’s very little point in having created it in the first place. In this age, when people are becoming ever more socially active online, and most folks rely on recommended information to guide their choices, it’s extremely important to incorporate social media into your content strategy.
Be sure to place social media share buttons on every page of your content so people can easily share what you generate to their social networks if they find it compelling. Optimize your content with images to make it more engaging.
Remember that going social will not only allow your content to achieve wider reach online; it’s also good for ranking your content in search because social signals now play an important role in SEO.
4. You’re only sharing via your blog
What I like about some of today’s most trusted sources of information is that they vary the way they share information.
They take full advantage of social media channels so their audience can stay in the loop all the time. I’m talking about the way Mashable, CNN, and Huffington Post, among others, are establishing a great social media presence.
You should too. Remember, no man is an island; no business will succeed on its own. Both need to harness as many channels as they can possibly handle to reach a wider audience.
So you should go beyond your blog. Create social media pages on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter where you can share your content in a more global way.
Effective content strategies will help you create brand awareness, increase your ranking both in search and in social media, and ultimately help you improve conversion.
Want more information on content marketing? Head over to our comprehensive guide on content marketing here: The All-in-One Guide to Planning and Launching a Content Marketing Strategy.