How to steer away from the content marketing danger zone

By Ashlea Cartee on November 16th, 2015

Content marketing is like an art. With creativity and careful planning, marketers are able to distribute valuable collateral and convert potential buyers into customers. When done well, it builds familiarity and trust with prospective and current clients by providing information in the right format, through the right channel, at the right time.

However, there are many marketers who tend to fall into content marketing pitfalls that steer them away from seeing success. Here are some of the major content marketing roadblocks that B2B marketers hit and guidelines on how to get over the hurdle.

What you don’t know will hurt you. Before getting into something way over your head, set aside time to learn the basics of content marketing and develop a plan. What are your goals? It’s essential to take the process one step at time and have a full grasp on content to fully maximize your efforts..

Have a documented strategy that includes a business plan, persona development, content mapping and distribution that will help define your goals and boost confidence.

According to the 2016 B2B Content Marketing Report, only 32% of B2B marketers have a documented content strategy, while 48% have an ‘undocumented’ strategy. Put yourself ahead of the game and have a basic foundation of your content marketing efforts.

No time for content development. It is important to collaborate with your sales team to figure out what types of content would help them close more deals and educate customers throughout their buying cycle. Current assets should be regularly refreshed, and new, quality content developed as necessary. It helps to create a content development calendar to stay organized and map out all existing content to help identify gaps when developing new content.

While many of us are creating more content, only a few are creating high quality content – and that creates an opportunity for those willing to invest in planning, researching and designing their content, to deliver a better experience to their audience.

Make content consistent in tone and voice with the same design. Repurpose existing assets, so that previous blog posts, recorded webinars, etc. can be used as collateral in emails.

Unclear on your audience. In order to create effective content, you have to know who you are talking to. Content marketing isn’t about selling. It’s about educating and informing your readers in order to earn their trust over time. 

Converting prospects into paying customers requires knowledge and data about customer behavior to deliver content that will compel them to act. The content needed for a prospect at the top of the funnel is different from one who is getting ready to make a purchase. As a marketer, you need to design content according to their buying stages.

A sophisticated marketing automation system should capture a prospect’s information on your website and pass along the information to the sales team. Once that information is documented, you can customize what kind of collateral will be sent to prospects. This content should be sent across multiple channels for maximum impact, whether it’s through lead nurturing campaigns, social media or the resources page on your website.

Driving away web traffic. Did you realize that your website is almost always the first point of contact for prospective clients? If your website isn’t capturing the interest of prospects, you might be losing them instead. It is imperative to provide gated content such as case studies and white papers to capture leads and ensure your content is compelling and engaging to get users to spend more time on your website.

Stand above the noise in the B2B healthcare market by developing a comprehensive content strategy to help convert prospects into paying customers. 

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