For every cutting-edge agency and whip-smart marketer who has a deep understanding of the content marketing game, there are just as many betting the farm on content marketing myths.
These myths aren’t harmless, either. They prevent companies from reaching new buyers and staying competitive in a rapidly changing landscape.
By now, it’s clear that content marketing is something every company can and should embrace, regardless of resource pool or budget.
So, it’s time to set the record straight. Here are three content marketing myths that should rust in pieces:
Myth No. 1: Content marketing is passing fancy
Believing this one can actually hurt your business.
Take a look around. Your competitors are all jumping on this bandwagon. And for good reason. The result? You’re being left in the dust!
Sure, there has been fad-like quality to the rush to board the content marketing boat. But the method is in no way a flash in the pan. Most data-driven marketing strategies require content that’s relevant. And the presence of high quality content will only continue to be in high demand.
Take lead nurturing, for an example. Nurturing prospects and even current customers is a proven strategy that most B2B organizations are deploying. But for lead nurturing to have any modicum of success, an ongoing system of deploying relevant and engaging content is required to educate the buyer and kick start sales. The necessity of this sort of content will only stay on the rise.
Myth No. 2: It’s best to have a content cache before starting a content marketing program
Sometimes marketers can be our own worst enemy.
Perfectionism and the overwhelming urge to spend too much time building a strategy can cause even elite marketers to delay something that should be pounced on.
No one can deny the need for a plan and a little runway. But waiting until you have boatloads of content before rolling out a content marketing strategy can be fatal to your marketing presence and brand awareness. Not to mention that you risk putting out stale content because it’s been gathering virtual dust in a Box folder.
Instead of waiting until you have enough content to fill the calendar the next six months, go to war with the army you have. Create that initial presence.
Lead nurturing by definition takes place over time. And that time also buys you leeway to identify existing assets that can be spruced up, blog posts that can be updated and repurposed, or marketing copy that played well in a handout and could look great online or in an email. Having a lack of any content will only weaken your brand’s credibility and sacrifice its place in the minds of buyers.
Stay top-of-mind with your prospects by giving them the little pieces of content you do have, and keep building that all-important momentum until you have a steady stream of killer content. As we’ve all learned at one point or another, strategy is great but action gets results.
Myth No. 3: Content marketing produces immediate ROI
It’s important to understand that content’s value is often intangible. As much as you desire lofty metrics to show worth hot off the bat, the loyal customers and relationships that solid, relevant contents creates has much more positive long-term results.
Don’t give up on it.
In the short term, check in with your analytics to see if your content has driven people to click download on your eBook or explore new areas of your website. Gauge the preliminary value of your content marketing using methods like this. The real worth of content marketing, mainly through the loyal customers it can create, reveals itself over time. Be patient.
Sure, content marketing is still held up as a sort of silver bullet in the marketing world. But, by now, it’s clear that as a tactic that will endure in an ever-evolving marketing landscape.
In order to harness the great potential of content marketing, savvy marketers need to kick the myths to the curb and set their sight on truth.
OK, great, you say. But how does content fit into my full strategy? Check out The Super Awesome Totally Wicked Definitive Manual of Marketing Automation to learn how content fuels a firestorm of buyer engagement.