6 B2B Content Marketing Mistakes That Inhibit Success

Ever since we were children, we’ve been told to learn from our mistakes. It’s a fundamental factor when it comes to improving at anything we do and B2B content marketing is no exception.

Content Marketing Mistakes

Being a member of the content marketing team here at KoMarketing for more than five years, I’ve had a chance to work with organizations across industries, and while the products and services may differ, the mistakes organizations make are oftentimes fairly similar when it comes to developing a content strategy.

Here are some of the most common B2B content marketing mistakes we see.

1. Neglecting the Variety of Available Channels

When I tell people I’m a content marketer at an agency, their reaction is typically, “Oh, so you write blog posts for your clients?” The answer to this is usually, “yes and no.” I then start diving into the details of the job and as their eyes glaze over, I stop. The reality is, there are many more content marketing tactics that can and should be utilized to drive and support an effective strategy. These tactics can include case studies, videos, whitepapers, infographics, and webinars to name a few. The key is to identify and understand what types of content are most well-received by your audience and deliver them in a timely manner.

Not sure where to start? Here are some posts that speak to this point:

2. Lacking a Defined Strategy and Goals

It’s possible to write great content that generates high traffic numbers and social shares without a defined strategy in place. It’s next to impossible to write great content that does those two things in addition to hitting your target audience and driving them to convert. Without goals and a defined strategy in place, you’ll likely just find yourself writing just for the sake of writing, and you will realize little to no ROI from your efforts. Define specific goals that can impact the business (increasing organic search traffic, improving the total number of newsletter subscriptions, whitepaper conversions, etc.) and craft content that will support those goals.

Not sure where to start? Here are some posts that speak to this point:

3. Creating and Not Educating

Speaking of writing without defined goals in mind – all too often, we encounter corporate blogs or other website content that’s clearly written without the audience in mind. Whether they’re solely (and obviously) writing with their internal goals as a priority (KPIs, SEO, etc.) or just writing about their first thought, content contributors need to be considering their audience. After all, real people will be the ones visiting the site, making decisions, and ultimately spending money with your organization. Great content will always educate and inform the audience. When this is done, you will be showcasing your expertise and get the most from your efforts.

Not sure where to start? Here are some posts that speak to this point:

4. Failing to Collaborate with Other Departments

While the marketing department may ultimately be responsible for the creation, publishing, and sharing of content that’s produced, they should not be the only ones with input. All too often, we see organizations’ content only come from marketing perspectives. It’s important to remember the content that’s created should be a reflection of the organization as a whole. In order to do so, cross-department collaboration is key. As you’re thinking about content ideas, get other departments like sales and customer service involved. This will ensure the content is speaking to customer pain points that may not be directly experienced by the marketing department.

Not sure where to start? Here are some posts that speak to this point:

5. Forgetting about Promotion

You’ve identified the target audience and buyer persona, decided on the most likely tactic to have an impact, produced excellent content, and hit “publish.” All set, right? Wrong. There are about 2 million blog posts published to WordPress each day, and on YouTube, its users upload about 400 hours of new video every minute on a daily basis. In a nutshell, there’s a high likelihood that your newly-published content will be lost in the online marketing abyss within seconds without proper promotion. Use tactics like social media, forum commenting, email, and third-party posts to get the content in the places where your audience is most likely to be spending time.

Not sure where to start? Here are some posts that speak to this point:

6. Expecting Overnight Success

A successful content strategy will not be built overnight and the same can be said when it comes to seeing results. All too often, we see companies pulling budget away from content initiatives because the results aren’t immediate. Remember, content marketing is an investment that will take time and is not typically a solution that will spike revenue or traffic in an instant. Below is a real client case example that illustrates this point.

Traffic Increase Chart

As you can see in this traffic chart, it took nearly a year after being published for this post to start driving substantial results. It’s now a top-performing asset on a consistent (monthly) basis. Be patient, and trust the process.

Not sure where to start? Here are some posts that speak to this point:

Final Thoughts

There are a number of mistakes and hurdles that can be experienced when developing and executing a content marketing strategy, and these are just a few of the most common examples.

What content marketing mistakes have you run into or seen others experience with content marketing strategies? Drop a comment below or let’s get a conversation started on Twitter!

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