Content marketing works. The statistics all say the same thing: content marketing has incredible ROI: 72% of marketers say it has helped them get more leads.
And why wouldn’t it be so? 42.7% of people use ad blocking software, so the only way to get to them is through content. Not using content marketing in your strategy is the first mistake.
Assuming you are using it (congratulations!), let’s see what other pitfalls you can avoid and how you can improve your content marketing ROI:
1. You Don’t Use Data to Fuel Your Content Marketing Strategy
Most content marketing strategies aren’t, in fact, strategies at all. It’s just one or more people brainstorming ideas about what seems to work for their blog.
Brainstorming ideas without a data-backed foundation is great for when you’re trying to decide where to go camping with your friends. But not when you expect real results from the effort you put in.
Instead of “cold” brainstorming, borrow some ideas my content marketing agency uses for our clients:
- Find keyword gaps using Google Search Console
- Constantly analyze the success of your content: what worked and what didn’t? What are the types of content that brought more leads? How can you replicate those?
- Find opportunities by analyzing competitors’ strategy: what works for them and what doesn’t? What topics could be explored better than they do it?
- Look for the alignment between the client’s business goals and content marketing opportunities: what topics would serve both the client’s goals and the reader’s need for information?
Data is everywhere. All you need is one decent analysis tool (and there are dozens of those, both paid and free) and a goal-oriented mindset to analyze that data and turn it into actionable insights.
2. You Ignore SEO
SEO may not be at the top of your list of priorities. You may have found another way to bring in leads through content marketing and that’s perfectly OK. But I urge you not to ignore it altogether.
SEO can have an ROI of up to 1,381% (!), depending on the industry you are in. So, even if you don’t get the full SEO treatment for your website, at least try to:
- Find a keyword for each piece of content you publish and optimize for it.
- Keep an eye on your rankings and statistics to see how your SEO is evolving.
- Never ignore SEO best practices.
3. You Don’t Monitor Content Marketing Performance
You published four blog posts and one whitepaper. You got some new leads in the following weeks. Congratulations!
But where did those leads come from exactly? Which of your blog posts was the most successful in attracting them? Or was it the whitepaper? Which blog post fell flat and brought in zero leads and a mere dozen hits?
Unless you answer these questions, you’ll never find the formula that works for you. Simply publishing new content pieces without a reason why will only result in you wasting thousands of dollars.
Good content is expensive, whether you create it in-house or outsource it to an agency or a freelancer. $5 articles are irrelevant today so if you really want results, be prepared to invest at least a couple of hundred in each piece of content.
Please note: I said invest, not spend or waste. This means that you should expect results. Just because a piece of content is expensive, it doesn’t mean it will bring results. Oftentimes, the piece in itself may be great, but it just doesn’t align with your goals well enough.
This is why you have to measure everything you publish. Set goals in Google Analytics. Monitor those metrics weekly. Go back to the drawing board when you don’t get the results you wanted. Rinse and repeat.
4. You Don’t Mix it up
You may have found a formula that works. But even if a certain type of blog post has worked for a while, it doesn’t mean it will work forever. People get bored, their needs change, and their preferences evolve.
Plus, if you get stuck on a single type of content, how will you know you’re not missing out on an even better option? Most marketers (myself included!) swear by evergreen content. It is the kind of content that brings you the most traffic and the most leads over time. It’s an investment that keeps on giving.
But this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t also publish case studies or articles about recent developments in your industry. Sure, they may be obsolete after a while, but they will show your readers that you are connected to everything that happens in your industry and that you can stay ahead of trends.
Ready to take your content marketing to the next level? We can help! Check out our case studies to see how we helped other companies meet their goals and let’s talk!