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5 Reasons Businesses Fail at Content Marketing

blogging content marketing marketing May 15, 2015

We have all heard that content is King, but then why do so many businesses fail at content marketing?  While there are many possible reasons, I will focus the most common reasons.

They Expect Immediate Results

It is very common for business owners to start a content marketing strategy and expect to see some results immediately.  I am here to tell you that it is rare to have immediate results with a content marketing strategy.  While you may see some results right away, they are usually minimal.

In order to understand why the results are slow, one needs to understand what content marketing is and how it works for your business.  Chances are your business is more than likely already doing content marketing to some capacity.  Content marketing is the act of creating and publishing content and sharing it through media.

"The purpose of content marketing is to establish and maintain expert status in your field and to gain and retain customers."
That being said, expert status does not happen overnight.  Potential clients need to get to know your business and you!  As with any interaction, this takes time.  Potential clients will follow you, review the content you create, and determine whether you are someone they want to work with. 

On average, it takes 7 interactions before someone will buy from you. With content marketing, the process is slow but can be one of the best things you do to gain and retain clients.  You are building the relationship that is needed to have loyal supporters.

It is common for a content marketing strategy to take 6 months or more to see desirable results.  That means that business owners need to commit to it and be patient.  While this may be difficult to do for some business owners, the results will be worth the wait.

Content is Not Relevant or Interesting

In order to have a successful content marketing strategy, a business must understand its customers.  You must provide your audience with relevant and interesting content they will want to read.  In order to understand this, one needs to know exactly who their audience is, what their interests are and why they are following you.

If you create content, publish it and push it out through social channels and are not getting any feedback, it is wise to poll your audience.  Find out what exactly they want to hear from you. You can even ask them what they thought of the content you already created – but be prepared for whatever feedback you get and use it as a constructive building block to move forward with.  You need to know what resonates with your audience to be successful, so be sure to thank them for helping you!

Focusing Too Much on Sales and Not Enough on the Audience

Content marketing is NOT sales.  Providing useful information and tips to your audience will draw far more people to your business pages than trying to sell them something. 

"NO ONE WANTS TO BE SOLD! People want to feel like it is their decision to work with you, not that you “sold” them into working with you."
Build their trust by NOT trying to sell them.  If people think you are trying to sell them something every time you publish an article or post something to social media, they will start to ignore your content.  The focus should be on them and to give them something valuable as a takeaway.  It is much easier for someone to have confidence in you and your business if you have already shown them your value through content marketing!

They are Not Consistent

One piece of advice I give my clients is to create an editorial calendar for your content marketing.  Be sure to create a schedule that works for you.  It is not about how much content you create (although results may be faster), but it is more about being consistent.  For instance, if you decide that you will post one blog post per week, then that is what you should do.  If that does not work for you, then you may want to do every other week or once per month.

Content is anything you create, so if you do not have time to blog more than once per month, you may want to specify certain days for certain content on social platforms, such as a tip day, motivation day or recipe (for health and wellness and nutrition folks).  Whatever you decide should work for your business and be in line with the interests of your audience.

The biggest mistake I see is when business owners start providing some sort of content and they are not consistent.  They blog when they find the time or they don’t have a system of posting that makes sense.  It is okay to adjust your content creation schedule if it is not working for you.  However, if you have been consistent for awhile and decide to change it, let your audience know so they don’t wonder what happened to the content they were used to seeing from you.  The important thing is that you make every effort to be consistent, but do not sacrifice quality in the process.

They Give Up

As I stated above, content marketing takes time and can take 6 months or more to see desired results.  Many business owners become impatient with the process and just give up their content marketing strategy.  Don’t!   Many times business owners give up far too soon! They don’t think anyone is reading their content or even paying attention.  Nothing could be further from the truth!

Social media has provided businesses with one of the best ways to be discovered.  Even if people do not click through to your blog content, they see when you publish it on social networks.  You would be surprised at how much just seeing this in the news feed has a positive impact.  People will start to recognize your brand.

The main takeaways here are to be patient, be interesting and relevant, don’t sell, be consistent and don’t give up!  Content IS King, but all Princes need to wait till it is time for them to be King.  Your time will come and your content will get you there!


If you need help with your content marketing strategy, social media or blogging efforts, schedule a call with me for a FREE 15-minute call to see how we can work together!