These 10 Content Marketing Myths Are Costing You Conversions
Content marketing has proven to be one of the most effective ways to drive conversion. Few companies today forego these strategies. However, assumptions may be made about how to best employ these strategies, so the results are not always as expected. If you want to know what’s going wrong, find out if the following assumptions, better known as content marketing myths, are affecting your implementation.
More is always better
This is a highly common presumption among content marketing myths. It is a remnant of the early days of SEO, when search engine algorithms focused on quantity. At that time, the frequency of content publication was one of the most important factors for obtaining a good ranking.
As might be expected, this triggered a frenzy of activity, under which the quality of the content often suffered. The main concern of websites was to publish as many entries as possible. However, we know that creating quality content requires a considerable investment of time, and this, unfortunately, is a scarce resource.
Consequently, much of the content published then also had low relevance and credibility with the audience. Conversion rates dropped precipitously, and search engines were forced to take action. The algorithm change was a major blow to sites with a high volume of low-value content. There are emblematic cases, such as that of eHow, which lost almost two thirds of its traffic.
Although this content marketing myth has been widely refuted, many still insist on defending it. However, it is a proven fact that, when a publication is relevant, it is minimally affected by algorithm changes. Take a moment to visit the pages that appear in the first results for your keywords. Organic ranking gives priority to solid content that responds to the search intent of the target audience.
Moreover, higher SEO value is closely related to better conversion rates. Quality content reveals conversion rates 6 times higher than those of low-value publications. So, in other words, quality is better than quantity. Quality content helps build trust with your audience and enables you to better position yourself as an expert in your industry. However, this does not mean you should reduce your frequency of publications. Ideally, you should produce quality content on a continuous basis.
Anyone can write excellent content
We are all capable of writing a text. We have completed writing assignments in school, but there are significant differences between writing a few lines and creating good content. And we’re not just talking about writing skills.
Undoubtedly, you know the ins and outs of your business better than anyone else. Knowledge, however, does not often translate into the ability to clearly explain a subject in an engaging manner. Moreover, the ultimate goal of Internet searches is to respond to a need, so a text should meet the audience’s expectations.
Consider the B2B sector. It has fully understood how to best use resources to connect to their audience. Despite the complexity of the subject matter of their businesses, 84% of companies outsource the creation of their content pieces. It would be naïve to think that they would outsource the work if it was not profitable. On the contrary, they know that it is much more effective to hire professional writers capable of explaining complicated subjects in clear and simple terms.
So, essentially, to counter this content marketing myth, it is necessary to find individuals who can write well and who have the skills to bridge the gap between a business and its audience.
Content marketing is cheap
This content marketing myth is a consequence of the previous one. If you think that anyone can write, it stands to reason that you are not willing to pay much for that work. But, as we have seen, content writing needs particular skills.
Granted, a wide range of rates are available in the market. However, there is usually an antithetical relationship between quality and price. As the saying goes, “Good work doesn’t come cheap. Cheap labor is no good.”
On the other hand, industry specialists may have unconsciously contributed to this content marketing myth. Significant emphasis has been placed on the abysmal cost differences with respect to other marketing efforts.
Without a doubt, content marketing is much more accessible and effective. It is estimated that it can achieve up to 62% savings and generate three times as many potential customers. Regardless, as a general rule of thumb, you have to invest resources to get good results.
Content marketing is just a fancy phrase for blogging
Indeed, at first glance, this may seem to be the case to many. Both focus on producing a well-written piece, free of syntax errors and misspellings.
Beyond this, the writer must use the same terms as his or her audience. This involves the proper implementation of technical words and idioms or expressions specific to your industry or region. It also refers to identifying the appropriate tone of voice. This is more than enough reason to refute this content marketing myth.
Furthermore, these arguments overlook the processes prior and subsequent to content writing. Before writing the first line, the writer should conduct keyword research. It is necessary to learn which phrases match the audience’s search intent and how these rank.
The writer should also research the competition to identify content gaps. With this information, they build a robust plan, which integrates various pieces of content. Once they have started publishing, a continuous cycle of monitoring and evaluation begins. Publishing a blog post is just the starting point.
The myth of content marketing as a collection of unconnected articles is erroneous and damaging. Without a pre-determined strategy and a thorough analysis of results, any writing will fail to produce effective benefits.
Once you outsource your content, you don’t have to do a thing
This content marketing myth curiously contradicts the most basic notion of entrepreneurial activity. It is true that content outsourcing will allow you to concentrate on your core business activities. There is no doubt that this is a smart way to leverage your resources.
Even so, you cannot neglect something as important as your company’s communications. Any service you outsource will continue to demand your attention. You must ensure that the contracted service meets your expectations and yields the expected benefits.
Likewise, it is recommended that you or someone on your team act as a liaison with the content creation company. Keep communication channels open and provide timely feedback to ensure consistency and quality of the pieces. Contrary to the claims of this content marketing myth, even with outsourcing, quite a bit falls under your responsibility.
Content marketing has a fast ROI
If someone assures you that you will get immediate ROI results on your content marketing, do not take this to heart. They are proclaiming this content marketing myth either because they do not have significant knowledge of content marketing or are attempting to defraud you.
Neither of these scenarios is flattering, but it is our duty to warn you. In reality, content marketing does not offer particularly quick results. Rather, it is a long-term commitment. Classifying content can take months of work. Search engine indexing is not instantaneous, and, to organically reach your audience, you need to rank well.
The good news is that relevant content pieces are rewarded by search engines with increased visibility. If you continue to produce effective quality content, especially on a regular basis, the wait will pay off.
Good content should be extensive
This is a content marketing myth that many industry specialists stand by. You will hear such so-called experts claiming that only articles rank well. Don’t be led astray. The number of words is not a relevant factor for search engines. Nor is this how search engines function.
The criteria used by Google to rank pages are a closely guarded secret. However, it is known to prioritize depth and breadth of coverage of topics. Obviously, longer content is more likely to generate value because it can provide more relevant data. But the true influencing factors are the quality and relevance of the information.
Content pieces that address various points of view or offer an approach from different perspectives are considered more profound. This is valued by search engines. The use of keywords and secondary terms can serve as a guide, but density is not necessarily a key factor. In reality, it is a matter of qualifying your agreement with the search intent. Search engines try to identify content that matches the user’s interests by looking at search terms.
Finally, experience, authority and trust (EAT) reinforce the content rating. Content that includes references to authority sources obtain better results. This often requires a bit of context and some interpretation of the data with original ideas. So, contrary to what this content marketing myth proposes, the value of the content matters more than the length.
Content marketing can be 100% automated
We have grown up with the illusion of a fully automated future, but reality has shown that the human imprint is still irreplaceable. Although there are many tools that can help improve the effectiveness of a publication, you will still have to roll up your sleeves.
Claiming that automation can take over your job is another content marketing myth. Of course, there are many stages of the process that can be accelerated with the right programs. This particularly relates to the tasks that have to do with data filtering and analysis.
However, according to the Cluetrain Manifesto, humans speak with a human voice. So far, content writing software has not been able to reproduce the subtlety of language. You can have short pieces generated, but these lack the emotion, legibility and coherence that only good talent can guarantee.
Content marketing should be separated from other brand development campaigns
This, in itself, is nonsense. Brand identity building is a complex and comprehensive process. Keep in mind that the audience will use all the stimuli they perceive from your product to form an opinion. Therefore, there must be consistency among all your activities.
Of course, this does not mean that your branding actions should be geared towards the same objectives as your content pieces. That is precisely the great strength of the marketing mix. It allows you to strategically focus your efforts, and combine them when appropriate.
Generally, branding is aimed at building affinity and goodwill for the product. Content marketing deepens the relationship, developing trust and brand authority. There are specific activities in which both modalities coincide and others in which they are completely independent. But, contrary to this content marketing myth, they should never be split.
All content must be related to my company
If you believe in this content marketing myth, you shouldn’t be surprised if your results are poor. You are doing things backwards. Content marketing focuses on the audience rather than the brand. It is a means to insert yourself into the conversations of your target audience with intelligent and relevant contributions.
We know you love your brand and have good reason to do so, but consumers want to make their voices heard. They are tired of brands talking at them and not caring about what really matters to their customers.
To be relevant, your content pieces must focus on providing value to your audience. You will gain visibility and build trusting, long-lasting and profitable relationships. Dare to challenge this content marketing myth and let your customers’ good references speak for your company.
Understanding these common content marketing myths will help you not only identify them but also avoid implementing them in your content strategy. Review your own strategy and pieces. Consider how to approach these with a full understanding of content marketing. This will help you increase conversions, create a more effective strategy and ultimately achieve profitability.