With traditional marketing channels drying up and consumer attention increasingly fragmented, content marketing is key for brands to reach their core audience. Many, though, are not seeing the success they hope for. One common mistake is confusing content marketing with advertising. The rules of the game are different. Messaging that is consistently too product-focused rather than being entertaining, educational or emotionally moving will fail to engage consumers or lead to conversion. To avoid these pitfalls, it pays to put time and thought into doing strategic foundational work before creating any content.
Creating Content That Gets Results
First, it’s important to understand who your target customer is, what their entertainment needs are, and who they are engaging with. This determines where you can play and what you can talk about. While a portion of any campaign will tout your product, to hold consumers’ interest you must broaden out to include tangential topics that are relevant to them and speak in an authentic voice. This requires strategy and creativity. Assess your internal organization. Do you have the best people in place to accomplish this or do you need outside counsel? With the right team, your content will become the conversation consumers remember.
Reaching Your Consumer: The Biggest Mistake Companies Make
We asked Joanne Tombrakos, professor of Digital Marketing and Social Media at New York University, for her advice to companies launching a content marketing campaign, including the mistakes to avoid. Tombrakos writes regularly for ForbesWoman, Thrive Global and The Huffington Post.
“Many companies know they need content to share on social media but have trouble letting go of traditional push marketing. They tend to talk at their customers instead of to them, forgetting they are trying to connect with other human beings. Today’s customer is very savvy. They know when someone is trying to sell them something and they turn away. Good content that is informative, useful, relevant, sometimes entertaining and may in some way make someone’s life a bit easier is what works. In the end, selling less will actually lead to more success.”
Martellus in Action: 3 Steps for a More Effective Campaign
Martellus Expert Nadina Guglielmetti is a digital and content marketing veteran who has launched and scaled best-in-class online experiences for Fortune 500 companies. Here, she shares the foundational steps necessary for creating content that resonates.
1. Know how you differentiate. Study the competition across all categories. Understand which brands your consumer is paying attention to and why.
2. Provide a value exchange with your customer. Map out an audience profile. Know which channels your audience looks to and what they want. Decide where you can add the most value so they are willing to spend time with your content.
3. Outline your playground. Your content topics should be authentic and tied to your brand DNA and positioning.