Is your content marketing authentic and trustworthy? Or is it regularly misused for advertising and sale pitches?
This article shares some insights on how your content marketing can engage customers, improve your brand, and increase website traffic and rank.
First, let’s rule out what you shouldn’t do with your content marketing.
Avoid The Selling Trap
Time is money, and content marketing incurs a lot of time. Plus, if you’re using a third party, i.e. a copywriter, to create your blog posts and articles, you’re dipping into your marketing budget. However, this doesn’t afford you any leeway to add sales pitches. 🙂
The fastest way to disengage with customers and damage your credibility as a trusted advisor is to ‘blow your own trumpet’ overtly or worse, attempting to disguise selling as something else of value in your content marketing content.
All businesses need a sales strategy, and that can including posts on platforms your customers frequent.
For example, when you need to push a new product or promotion, be transparent and construct your advertisement in a campaign that lets your audience know you have something to share with them about your business, product or service.
Sneak in the sales pitch
In your email marketing posts on social media and on your website, you can use long-form content like an ‘advertorial’ but call it what it is instead of using content marketing to ‘sneak in the sales pitch’ in somewhere hoping to fool your audience.
An example of selling in a blog post is using an anchor like ‘click here’ for more information, and the linking page is to an online shop, not to more detail on the topic presented in the content of the article.
Consumers only need to experience this insult on their intelligence once to leave them with a negative impression of your business.
Maybe it’s not your fault, insofar as you or your marketing team were wrongly advised by a third party like a link builder. Or that you as an outreach marketer caved in when pressured by your client to get ‘dofollow’ links to their home page.
Did you know all sponsored links in content need to identify as such according to Google?
When accepting guest posts, publishers need to vigilant and mark external links sponsored as sponsored or nofollow or both.
How to Create Content That’s Authentic
Highly informative articles that focus on knowledge transfer don’t just work hard in the short term. They’re everlasting insofar as good content is always found in searches and shared. It’s this content that Google ranks highly too, so it’s counterproductive to waste time with subterfuge actions that your customers are not fooled by.
Start working on a long term strategy for your content marketing with unique, relevant content that genuinely resonates with your audience.
Write content that inspires you.
When you’re writing your own content, it’s a lot more enjoyable when it’s on a topic that interests you. Your writing style will ooze your enthusiasm for the topic, and this will keep your readers engaged.
External input from leading authorities.
The Internet is your best friend when searching for experts and articles on the same topic.
Search online for keywords relating to your content topic to find out what has been written about it and consider how you can improve on their message in your article.
Always reference your sources in your content.
Introduce facts, statistics and opinions
All content should show you’ve done your research. Introduce results from surveys, studies and present data and statistics to support your content. Articles that are well researched and written do take longer.
The average article of 1000 words may take up to six hours. However, if you’re not up for writing 1000+ words, every post focus on quality over quantity.
There really is no right or wrong answer for long a blog post will take, and you’ll never know when you finish it if you’ve created that article will be a stand-out and loved by all, including Google.
Many marketers and some businesses are less interested in the long term gain of content marketing: their content marketing style churns and burns their audience and brand reputation.
Stop using short term traditional marketing strategies for content marketing as it really needs a long term approach.
You can make an immediate impact when you avoid ‘selling’ in blogs, guest posts and articles.
Remember, hiding the fact you’re just promoting a service or product will fool no one. The only way forward to get more from your content is with transparent and clear communication.
Blogging is a topic we love, and there’s no end to what you can learn and do with it. Do you want to read more on this topic? See this article on how to write blog posts that everyone wants to share.