The idea of content marketing seems reasonably simple: think of a blog idea, construct blog content and share with the world. Then magically website traffic will increase, which will turn into revenue for your company, right? Well, that’s the hope anyway, but it’s actually quite a bit more complicated than that.

It’s almost common sense at this point that most companies should maintain a blog. Content marketing is a great way to elevate your company’s online presence. Sure, it can be a complex process to understand what the return on investment (ROI) content marketing has for your brand, but recognizing the basics can give you a big jump start on the process.

We talk about content market quite a bit in this blog. In fact, most digital marketers write tons of blogs, hold countless meetings and iron out the details of content marketing strategies with clients. Why? Because there’s a lot to understand and it’s really one of the most important elements of your digital marketing strategy.

When doing research on creating better blog content, it’s easy to get confused. Everyone claims to be an “expert” and wants to share helpful, yet sometimes misleading, pointers on ways blog content can improve the awareness of your brand. We’re here to set the record straight!

content marketingCommon misconceptions about elevating your brand with blog content:

Myth: Quantity < Quality

The idea behind content marketing is that continuously updating your website with new, fresh content, more folks will be enticed to your website. That being said, no one wants to read terrible, lack-luster blog content. If you share a lot of lousy blog content, people will stop coming to your website, they won’t share your information with friends and it can tarnish the reputation of your brand. Even if writing an interesting blog takes three times as long as producing a boring one, the ROI is worth the extra effort.  The language used and information contained in blogs are essential to the success of your brand’s content marketing.

Myth: Content marketing = quick sales

Again, the hope of blogs is that they increase your web traffic, but that does not mean your readers will automatically add things to their shopping cart. Content marketing is a process; it requires a certain level of trial and error and it takes time. Keep an eye on trends associated with your blogs and traffic increases. Do certain blog topics get more traffic? Are people sharing specific information more frequently? Are your Facebook posts getting more likes when you talk about one area of your business? Blogs are not meant to lead to direct sales; they aren’t a place for you to sell yourself. Though you can certainly link to places to complete sales, that isn’t the main purpose. I know, this can get frustrating, but you need to look at the big picture. Write blogs because they’re a fun way to engage with potential customers and a great tool to share behind-the-scenes information about your brand. In our social media driven world, a brand’s personality can really set them apart from competitors.

Myth: Every blog needs to be an original idea

With so many blogs out there, it’s inevitable that people will duplicate blog ideas. This isn’t to say that you should steal content without giving credit. This also isn’t to say that you should simply lift content from other websites and post it on your own, even if you do give credit. However, it’s okay to cite other sources, repurpose ideas from other blogs and make them your own, or link to information elsewhere.  I read several blogs on a daily basis. At some point, it gets difficult to know what information inside my brain is original and what’s a combination of other people’s ideas. To be honest, this blog includes ideas from at least four articles that I’ve read this week. As long as you aren’t stealing other people’s ideas and claiming them as your own and giving credit where it’s due, it’s okay.

Myth: Numbers are what matters mostcontent marketing

Yes, numbers are important and you should measure your content marketing. You should keep traffic of how many shares your blog gets, how many people visitor that blog, which blogs are most popular and things of that nature. However, these numbers are secondary to the engagement with consumers, the offline chats people have because of your blogs and the trust blog content earns your brand. These are things that cannot be measured, making content marketing even more difficult to grasp. True, if you don’t seem to be getting any visitors to your blog, it’s probably time to reconsider your strategy. However, there are other important elements to consider when maintaining a blog.

Myth: Blog content only has one shelf life

Creating blogs that aren’t time sensitive can lengthen the longevity of its impact. Twitter is a great tool to share old content and find new readers. Additionally, linking back to earlier posts will increase that page’s views. Also, the people that read your blogs may share it with friends, further increasing its shelf life.

Myth: Blogs are the only type of content marketing that works

Content marketing goes far beyond blogs. It can include videos, white papers, photos, infographics, illustrations, case studies and more. Think outside the box; content marketing is all about being creative.

Are you interested in creating a content marketing strategy but you’re not sure where to start? Let’s chat!

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Jennifer Cline

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