The term “content marketing” gets thrown around a lot in the marketing realm, but what does it really mean?
Here at Reach Smarter, we’ve noticed a lot of misconceptions surround this important technique, so for the next several weeks, we’ll be debunking the myths surrounding content marketing.
Myth #1 – “Content marketing” means simply making more content.
This myth stems from a basic misunderstanding of what content marketing is all about. Formally, the Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as “consistently creating and curating relevant and valuable content with the intention of changing or enhancing consumer behavior.”
Note the emphasis on “consistent”, “relevant”, “valuable”, and “enhancing”. Making more content simply to show more content offers no value to the consumer. Quality, not quantity rules the day when it comes to high impact content marketing. Relevancy, timeliness, context and utility must all come together to create productive content marketing efforts. More is not better.
Myth #2: Content marketing is “obvious”.
This drives us crazy. Content marketing is more data-driven than ever. It’s not easy to create content that is interesting, high quality, and most importantly, leads to increased awareness, engagement, or sales.
For example, several years ago it would be unanticipated to focus on videos, images, and infographics. But the data shows that these performs are better than text alone. And it’s important to stay on top of these trends as customers expect content to reflect their present interests.
Myth #3: Content marketing is free.
Content marketing is anything but free. It costs dearly in time, effort, and energy. For every piece of content you create, there are many hours of preparation, writing, illustrating, editing that have to go into it. Plus, once you publish the content, you have to distribute it and measure performance.
In fact, “lack of time” is cited as the top challenge facing B2B marketers, according to the 2014 B2B Content Marketing Trends report. Effective content initiatives require a significant investment in internal staff, as well as production and distribution resources. You must be willing to educate and train staff in new digital skill sets across an organization, not just within a marketing department.
That’s all for this week. Stay tuned for part two of the series in the weeks to come!