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Content marketing is an essential technique for marketers these days. Thanks to content marketing, companies have been able to raise brand awareness, increase leads, and elevate their status as an industry leader. Despite these benefits and acceptance, there are still misconceptions about content marketing that need to be debunked immediately. And, here 11 of those myths.
1. My audience won’t fall for content marketing.
Consumers don’t want to read a sales pitch. They want to interact with brands and form long-lasting relationships. It’s been this way for years. And don’t expect that to change anytime soon. Take for example the increasingly important Millennial demographic.
A majority of Millennials, 62 percent, have reported that when they see or read about a brand through websites or on social media they feel a connection and loyalty with that company. Additionally, a third of them are willing to buy a product if the brand’s content isn’t sales-y and instead feels authentic and truthful.
No matter your specific audience, it’s clear that they are willing to consume your content – just as long as you’re not making a sales pitch and cultivating relationships.
2. Content marketing won’t work in my business.
Not every brand is as exciting as Red Bull. But, that doesn’t mean that it can’t succeed in content marketing. In fact, brands that aren’t perceived as exciting are straight-up owning content marketing.
Related: The 4 Laws of Content Marketing
GE has been using visual content. This has allowed them to “let go of the brand a little bit and be part of internet culture.” Public accounting firm Crowe Horwath created executive briefs, case studies, infographics, checklists, Q and A, and Brainshark video that targeted C-level prospects in financial institutions. Danish shipping company Maersk used content marketing to spread brand awareness, share industry insights, and hire employees by telling stories, like how ships navigate the frozen Baltic Sea during winter.
3. It’s too expensive.
While there are costs involved with content marketing, like hiring writers, graphic designers and paying for ads on Facebook or Twitter, it’s more affordable than traditional advertising. And, if the leading marketers are also pretty good at repurposing content.
My company, Evolvor, does this frequently. We’ve launched a Content Marketing 101 series that starts out as a blog post. The post is then repurposed into a YouTube video. In other words, we’re killing two birds with one stone.
4. It’s free.
At the same time, content marketing isn’t going to get you in front of a large audience for absolutely nothing. While the idea is to let your content grow organically through social shares guest posts, or getting a shout out, sometimes you’re amazing piece of content needs a little push. That’s when you have to spend $10 to give it a boost on Facebook.
5. People don’t read anymore.
Wrong. People still read. They just don’t read garbage anymore. Quality content that is valuable, informative, solves a problem, and is not promotional will get read by your audience.
6. I don’t have the resources.
One the biggest challenges that marketers face is not being able to create enough content. And, when you’re a one or two person show, this is even more of a problem. After all, you have a ton of other things to do besides creating and curating content.
Related: What You Need to Know to Improve Your Content Marketing
To address this problem you could repurpose content, use social media scheduling and monitoring tools, like Hootsuite or Buffer, content idea generators like Portent and hiring freelancers though marketplaces like Upwork.
7. I can’t prove the ROI of content marketing.
Content marketing should be based around your goals and objectives. If you want to increase traffic you can track that by seeing how many visitors originated from Facebook or Twitter. If you want to know how many leads you generated you can look at how many copies of your eBook were downloaded.
If you set these goals in the first place, it is possible to prove the ROI of your content marketing campaign.
8. Results happen fast.
Content marketing is a process that takes a lot of time and trial and error. Everything from conducting research to actually creating content to analyzing its results could take months – even years. Just because you just published the greatest article ever written doesn’t mean that it’s going to take the world by storm overnight.
9. My business can’t compete.
Yes. You not only have to compete with the leading thought leaders in your industry, you also have to breakthrough the all of the adorable videos of babies laughing and dogs chasing their tails.
While there is an audience that loves that type of content — OK, that’s actually all of us – people still want content that serves a purpose. Again, if your content is valuable, unique, and can make the lives of your audience better, then there’s definitely plenty of room to compete.
10. Traffic and shares = success.
Just because your video has over 20,000 viewers on YouTube doesn’t mean that it was a success. At the end of the day, did it accomplish any of your KPIs?
Related: Content Marketing Isn't Really About Your Content
For example, filming a video of your entire office doing the "Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)" may be your most popular video ever, but did it drive traffic to your website? Do you obtain any leads? Did it put you on the radar of influential industry leaders?
11. Your content can’t be published somewhere else?
Scour the internet long enough and you’ll notice that this happens frequently. For example, my post "5 Marketers on Periscope You Need to Be Following" was originally published here on "Entrepreneur," but it was also republished on several other reputable websites.
If you want to tap into a large audience, then go ahead and republish your amazing content. LinkedIn is a great place to start, before moving on to larger platforms that accept syndicated content like Huffington Post and Business2Community.