Over the last couple of years, content marketing has proven to be a very effective method to attract and engage target audience members. Online marketing strategists constantly sing the praises of content marketing and many businesses are starting to listen.
Marketing departments churn out content as a way to boost their search engine optimisation and assist their inbound marketing, but many of these companies are missing the mark. In other words, they are giving us examples why bad content marketing is even worse than no content marketing at all.
Let me explain in more detail. If you are going to spend time creating and sharing content, it’s important to avoid the following five content marketing mistakes.
Poor grammar or spelling
When you write content, you want to put your best efforts forward. One of the biggest content marketing mistakes is publishing content that is filled with spelling and grammatical errors. All this does is undo all of your best efforts. It’s true that the more content you have, the better off you’ll be – but this is only true if it’s done right.
Sloppy content filled with errors won’t get the job done. In fact, it is likely to damage more than promote, your business.
If you have a good idea and the words are flowing quickly, that’s great, but that’s also often when spelling and grammar errors pop up. It’s amazing that some content marketers don’t follow the rules that they should have learned in elementary school.
Always go back and proof your work! Use a tool like Hemingway to check your work. Even better, why don’t you proof it and then ask someone else to do the same? This second pair of eyes may pick up on something that you are missing.
Too much or too little content
It’s true that content marketing online is a tactic that never really ends. It should be ongoing, but you need to determine what the right amount of content is. You don’t want to pump out too much social media content because it is a drain on resources, will affect the quality of the content, and target audience members don’t have time to read it all anyway.
On the other hand, not having enough content means that you won’t get noticed.
Every target market has a sweet spot. Find the right pace that works for your business and suits the needs of your target audience. Research your market and the types of content that other websites and businesses have out there.
In your opinion, do they have just enough content or too little? Your ultimate goal is to give your audience the content it really wants.
Posting the same stuff everywhere, over and over
Gone are the days of posting the same article on numerous article directory sites. The focus is now on original content since article directory sites took a major hit after Google updates. This is no longer a strategy that works.
You’re much better posting the content on your own blog or website. Excellent content can help boost your SEO efforts, encourage social media engagement, and also establish you as an authority in your market. If you don’t publish your content on your own website, you miss out.
Not thinking optimisation
Content published anywhere on the web can be crawled and indexed by the search engine spiders so it’s important to think about SEO when creating it. Target specific keywords in the heading/title and throughout the body content naturally.
This is one of the most frustrating content marketing mistakes I see. Do some keyword research using a keyword research tool or by analysing Google suggested searches to find out how people are searching and what kind of information they are searching for.
In fact, this fascinating research into 5,000+ Australian Blogs goes even more advanced, revealing headline length, average blog post length and more.
Stuffing with keywords
However, when it comes to optimising content, there should be a balance. Google warns against what they call irrelevant keywords so you need to find a way to weave in a few select keywords while also making sure your content reads naturally. Here’s what Google says about it:
“Keyword stuffing” refers to the practice of loading a webpage with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results. Often these keywords appear in a list or group, or out of context (not as natural prose). Filling pages with keywords or numbers results in a negative user experience, and can harm your site’s ranking. Focus on creating useful, information-rich content that uses keywords appropriately and in context.
We’ve all seen examples where the text just repeats the same phrases, and reads very poorly – this is exactly what they are trying to fight.
You should write content that will please your audience first. You are much better off researching the keywords after the content is written. When you do, you may find that you’ve already written in keywords in a natural way and that you have to do very little in order to further optimise the pages.
There’s no escaping the importance of engaging content marketing these days. Done well, content marketing can benefit your SEO, establish you (or your business) as an authority, builds links to your website, and increases your engagement in social media.
However, it’s important that you spend the time to do this correctly, being mindful of the above mistakes, otherwise chances are it will do more harm than good!