3 Content Marketing Practices to Stop Immediately

3 Content Marketing Practices to Stop Immediately

Bad advice is the worst. Whether we accept relationship advice from someone who can’t hold a relationship of their own or marketing advice from someone who is regurgitating something they read… And what they read was written by someone that didn’t know what they were talking about… And so it goes…

While I can’t offer relationship advice (so sorry) I can eliminate some of the bad content marketing advice that’s out there.

The following are the top three content marketing practices to throw out immediately if you want a strategy that is successful and draws in more leads and customers. And don’t worry, I’ve also advised on how to strengthen your strategy after throwing out these “bad pieces of advice.”

1) Create as much content as you can

I’ve come across countless articles that tell me to schedule out my content months in advance and stick to that schedule.

What if I’m not feeling inspired? What if the best I can pump out is a mediocre blog post?

I vote that this is horrible advice. That all of the content you write, publish and share should say something useful or new or ideally “epic.”

Think of it this way, what if someone comes across your mediocre blog post when they’re checking out your brand or your blog for the first time? Your “just okay” blog post may cause them to not want to read your blog again. Because let’s face it, there is probably a better blog or piece of content out there on that same topic that is presenting it better.

In contrast, if they came across a really awesome post but it was written the week before, I think they would be more impressed by the great content than the mediocre content that was written within the last few days or day. Because you thought you had to create a piece of content just because.

Instead Try This:

Instead of creating a ton of blog posts and little pieces of content that go out on a daily basis, you should make sure that you’re producing “epic” or “viral” or “impressive” (insert any other grandiose word you like here).

These types of content include ebooks, infographics, white papers and published research and surveys that aim to impress. These types of content add more benefit to the consumer and make your brand look like an authority on your topic.

Don’t get me wrong, keeping up with your blog is great—the goal is to find that balance and not writing just because you feel like you need to post every single day.

Just remind yourself this: If you don’t have anything epic to say, don’t say anything at all…

2) Focus on making your brand looking awesome

The best content marketing is about producing content and resources that don’t look like marketing at all. They are things that help your consumer. That’s it. End of story.

So if your focus is on making your brand look awesome, you will come across as self-promotional and your content will read like a traditional advertisement.

Your content should not be about your company or your brand. Your blog should not contain articles that only talk about your brand.

Instead your focus should always be on your target consumers. Think about what kind of content, topics and resources they would seek out and need.

Once in a while it’s okay to share the latest news pertaining to your brand such as a new product release. Just make it interesting and make sure that you don’t share a lot of this type of content.

Instead Try This:

Instead of writing content that is centered around your brand, write content that is centered around the needs of your target consumers and current customers.

Ask yourself the following questions and see if each one sparks a content idea or post topic.

  • What type of blogs would my consumers be attracted to?

  • What pain points do they experience that I can solve with content?

  • What is the age demographic of most of my consumers? (Based on this think of what social media channels they may or may not be part of)

  • Is there a scary part of the buying process that I can make easier with advice and tips?

Go on sites like Quora and G+ groups and see what kinds of questions people are asking about the niche your brand falls in to. Use these questions as topics for posts and white papers.

By focusing on only writing content that your consumers need, your brand just looks awesome by default…

3) Good Content is all you need

If you write good content, your work is done it will just attract people to it. Wrong.

Not only do you need to create this awesome content but you need to promote it. There is nothing worse than having carefully put together words or a beautiful infographic just hanging out in internet space without anyone to see it or enjoy it!

Instead Try This:

Try these top ten ways to promote your content.

  1. Twitter is one of your best assets but you have to build it. Schedule out a few tweets that ask a question that your content answers or has good quotes from your content.

  2. Obviously Twitter isn’t the only social media channel you’re on so cross promote on the other channels as well. Link from Facebook and Pinterest etc. to your pieces of content.

  3. Email out links to your big pieces of content. I don’t recommend sending out an email every time you upload a new blog post but I do recommend sending out an email to promote every ebook and infographic that you create.

  4. Place obvious social share buttons on your blog and content pieces.

  5. Develop relationships with others in your niche and share each other’s content.

  6. For those extra epic pieces of content that you just know is awesome, use paid advertisements such as Google ads, LinkedIn ads and sponsored tweets to promote.

  7. Consider buying a third party email blast. Again only for those really awesome pieces of content.

  8. Join G+ and LinkedIn groups and share your content with the community. Check out other discussions and see if linking to your content in these discussions is relevant.

  9. In your email signature, link to your latest post or ebook. Have members of your company do this as well.

  10. Use blogger outreach to share your content with influential bloggers in your niche.

When it comes to what you’re sharing on your social media channels, make sure that you not only share your own content, but you also share other content that helps your customers. This way, others in your niche will share your stuff as well. Look at it as “content sharing karma.”

Conclusion

Okay so you’re not going to create as much content as your fingers can type—you’re going to aim to create only awesome content. You’re not going to focus on writing about how cool your brand is, instead you’re going to focus on helping your current and potential consumers with resources they need. And you’re not going to create great content and just leave it to be found, you’ll actively promote it.

Sounds like a great game plan so what are you waiting for!?

Are there any pieces of content marketing advice floating around that you deem “bad advice?” Share in the comments below!

  • Hi Pratik,

    That’s an awesome post. Just what I needed. I should remember to ask: “What If I am not inspired?” to someone I’ve been longing to ask for a while now 🙂

    Thanks to some of my clients, “mediocre” is out of the question. Mediocre for me would mean a hungry day. Writing everyday, I can vouch for that. I can’t even, or afford not to get “inspired” 🙂

    Awesome content is the only kind of content that works. Forget everything else. Period.

  • KatarzynaPietka

    Very good post! I like the first point most, I must admit – looks like someone finally understands that there is no possibility of being in your full copywriting/creative shape 24/7 :). The inspiration and flow comes in waves – catching it at the right moment makes more sense than struggling to surf on the quiet waters of writer’s block.

  • Great article, Pratik, and well thought out. I’d agree with all of these and add a bit to your ‘create as much content as you can’ point. I’ve found one of the most important factors in content marketing to be re-using content intelligently. Say you have a fantastic blog post – it’s getting great engagement, you’re proud of it, it’s exclusive, etc, etc. Think about that article as the center of your content web, with it you can create statistic infographics, slideshare presentations, videos, webinars, guest posts, and more. Let alone everything you can do on social with a single piece of great content! It’s a waste to just write something awesome and think, ‘alright, well, now that’s done I’d better start a new one!’ I know not every article is going to lend itself to recycling, but it’s worth keeping in mind. Do you agree?

  • Amanda J Harrington

    Not forgetting that if you do feel pressure to add new content too often, then it is the pressure which will win in the end and not the content!

  • liordegani

    Great read Patrick.
    I absolutely agree with the points mentioned.
    IMO, one of the important things to do, instead of just shooting out blog posts, is finding the niche that unit your audience together (besides your product/business) and blog about that.
    Most business write solely about their business or direct niche, while their audience might be sharing same interests on different topics – and that’s where you can interest them and of course engage them.

  • totally agree with you

    Regards, http://www.lonelyreload.com

  • Jennifer Gregory

    Great post. I like the idea of putting a link to the latest blog post in an email signature – thank you!

  • Nothing to add except bang on the money, mate. Good stuff – cheers!

  • I big point that I often overlook is that you really need to spend 20% of the time creating the content & the other 80% of the time marketing it.

  • Britany Robinson

    The advice that its necessary to have a schedule that you strictly adhere to is one I hear a lot and have always struggled with. I think it is important to be reliable and consistent with your posts, but if you’ve got nothing impressive to say, it’s definitely better to say nothing at all.

  • I couldn’t agree more with point one, the days of trying to do content on a massive scale are over. The death of “article marketing” sites pretty much saw an end to that thanks to the Panda update. The tricky part is explaining to clients how one piece of content can have more value then ten done badly but if you can crack that then you’ll be able to break free of the cycle of quantity over quality.

  • Shadeed Eleazer

    I like that your article provides details advice and solutions instead of simply stating the problem. Great writeup. I will share with my network.

  • It’s funny, I tried all of these and really felt overwhelmed until I evolved into something similar to this. Thanks for affirming I’m not totally on the wrong track.

  • kenbiin

    Most business write solely about their business or direct niche, while their audience might be sharing same interests on different topics – and that’s where you can interest them and of course engage them.

    http://timemart.vn/305/p/356042/may-tap-co-bung.html

  • Hey Pratik,

    This is a very insightful article here! I completely agree that we need to create “epic” content rather then just creating an abundance of small quality. This is what I like to do when creating epic content.

    I always keep customers in the buying part of their brain. This is essential when using methods of indirect marketing, such as internet sites, a promotional piece, e-mail blast, social networking or an article. Create content material that is so excellent it gets to be ‘forward-able,’ meaning it is so great people will forward it to buddies or business associates who could become potential customers. This will ease several of the stresses a consumer feels when ‘being sold’ on a service or company.

    Thanks again for an awesome article,
    ‘TC’ Teresa Clark

  • hunter

    This was very useful to read about for my social media marketing class. It brought more insight to certain topics that we discussed in class

  • Shared your article with my connections on LinkedIn, then re-read the first paragraph: “Bad advice is the worst… or marketing advice from someone who is regurgitating something they read” What have I done!?!?

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Hi Ashwin, thanks for the feedback and sharing your thoughts 🙂

    Happy to hear you liked the post!

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks, Katarzyna 🙂

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    I agree, James. Perhaps content curation done smartly would do the trick as well 🙂

    Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    I agree! It’d be more of like a news source rather than informative/helpful content source.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    You’re right. It is more like writing about what your target audience want to read than writing about what you love to write.

    Thanks for reading.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks!

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks, Jennifer. It works pretty well. You should give it a try.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks, Danny 🙂

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    That’s so true. You can’t get enough value out of it if you can’t market your content well.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    That’s what I’m saying Mike. It doesn’t work neither it helps if we write so many short version of articles and publish them on the blog. Instead, we should focus on creating epic/great content that’s valuable.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks, Shadeed. Appreciate it.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Great, thanks. Hope things work out well for you too.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Agreed. Thanks.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks, Teresa. I agree with your point of view.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Glad to hear that. Thanks for reading.

  • Dede Frederick

    Thanks for a great article. One a pet peeves of mine, the saying
    that all you need to rank on Google is good content. Nothing could be further
    from the truth. Sure good content is important, but I need to build links to my
    article to let Google know that people actually like it. Sure if it’s good
    content someone may link to it, but does everyone who read my content have a
    website? Will everyone who enjoys it link to it? Then how can I climb in the
    SERPs. I think people who say this either don’t know what they’re talking about
    or purposely trying to keep you from ranking your content.

  • Ann Smarty

    I agree. Quality over quantity.

  • Pratik Dholakiya

    Thanks, Ann 🙂

  • PageFair

    Awesome article! Definitely see too many orgs creating as much content as they can just for the sake of it.

  • HooPayz

    Great information! Thanks for sharing.