Yes, content marketing could be the best thing to ever happen to your brand. But that doesn’t mean it’s all rainbows and unicorns. The rewards can be amazing, but that comes with a price.
This is exactly why content rookies and first-time business owners and brand ambassadors have to understand the ins and outs of content marketing. This means knowing not just the good side of it, but the dark, scary corners as well.
Here are 5 expectations about content marketing that you should neither believe nor set:
1. More content means better results.
If you choose to believe this, then you’re better off going back to the time when people just stuffed their entire page with keywords, expecting it to go right to the top of the search engine results page.
Just because you’re creating more content does not mean you’re adding value to more people’s lives. It only means that your page is quickly filling up. The question is, is everything on your page worth looking at?
No, we’re not asking you to cancel all those posts you’ve scheduled for publishing. If posting on a daily basis works for you, then go ahead and do it. What we’re pointing out here is that quantity should never be the basis for quality.
2. Awesome content goes viral.
Your content is awesome! It has every relevant detail that your target audience will love, and the way it is presented is just amazing. It’s catchy, it’s creative, it’s unique. So it’s going to go viral, right?
Well, not really.
Yes, social media has the power to make your post reach the other side of the world in seconds. But just because your post has everything people need does not mean it will be a huge hit. Believe it or not, there’s a lot of great social media content out there that died depressing deaths regardless of their relevance. More work is needed if you want people to look at it and share it.
You have to actively promote your posts, and boost them as much as possible. Look for groups and other communities where your target audience hang out. You can’t just sit there and expect the post to magically float around the world.
3. Near perfection means complete success.
Your chosen image is just perfect, it deserves to be placed on the centerpiece or cover of a magazine. The text is just brilliant, and it is highly polished, even the slightest contractions are nowhere to be found. But just because all the elements of your post represents high marks, this does not mean people will love them.
Content is meant for humans, normal humans who go about their business, follow trends, and have regular routines. Sometimes, the less polished your content is, the more potential it has to work.
Use language that people can easily relate to. A little street slang here and there won’t hurt. Take random shots from your phone and use that as a title image on one of your articles. It wasn’t shot using an expensive professional camera, but this makes it more relatable for the audience.
4. This is going to rake in a lot of money.
Now this is one expectation that one should not be setting, especially if your client or brand is still new to the game. Yes, content marketing has the ability to make any poster or article reach people that tradition marketing won’t be able to reach (at least, at the same costs). But this does not mean that content marketing alone is going to make you rich.
You would still have to ensure that your product is consistent to your promises. Your customer service still has to be amazing. Your sales team still has to reach out to customers and do the actual selling. Content marketing is not a magic potion that prompts people to go to you and start grabbing your products off the shelves. It’s merely a small ingredient.
5. I don’t have to shell out anything.
Social media is free. I can easily write my blogs myself and use some free blog site out there. I’ll just keep my profiles busy by sharing stuff and tagging people. It’s free promotion all around!
Sure, you can stick to that. But you can’t expect that to bring you success.
Successful content marketing is not free. You would have to boost your posts. You can’t just use any free blogging engine, you would have to invest on a professionally-made website that can house your blogs. And if you don’t have the penchant for writing, hire a pro who can do it for you.
Remember that for you to get anything, you would have to give something back. That’s the rule of reciprocity. Content marketing is a great investment – this is not an area where you can be a scrooge and expect to rake in a lot.
Content marketing can do a lot for your brand. But when you set the wrong expectations both to your clients and to yourself, you miss out on all the huge opportunities. You become blinded by false hopes and promises. Make sure you stay within the bounds of reality. With hard work, you can get your content where you need it to be.