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4 Tactics to Shoo Your Audience Away Through Content Marketing

Or, how not to create content if you want to increase revenue

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BY Tanya Mariano - 04 May 2017

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

Nobody wants to lose customers, obviously.

But many content marketers may be unwittingly driving their audience away by committing some content marketing don’ts.

In a post on Content Marketing Institute, Neil Patel -- co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar, and KISSmetrics -- cites four ways in which poorly crafted content may be creating disconnects between brands and their audiences.

 

1. A “me, me, me” mindset

The starting point of truly engaging content is -- surprise! -- not content, but your audience.

Instead of discussing topics that you find interesting, talk about things that resonate with your audiences. In Patel’s words, be audience-centric, not content-centric.

"For example, you may be intrigued with industry trends and decide to create blog posts, white papers, infographics, etc., about them. But if they don’t resonate with your audience, you’re going to see little to no effectiveness. In some cases, it can even drive a wedge between you and your audience," he writes.

Female-focused e-commerce company Orami in Thailand gets this one right. Orami wants to be women’s first destination “not just for shopping, but also for content and community,” founder Shannon Kalayanamitr tells Inc. Southeast Asia. The company even launched online magazine #Oramilife -- which covers lifestyle, beauty, entertainment, and career advice -- to help raise organic traffic and customer loyalty.

 

2. Death by SEO

Another turnoff for audiences is content that's teeming with keywords to the point that the writing becomes awkward and unnatural. Content marketing and SEO should work hand in hand, and going overboard with the keywords will bog your content down. It will drive audiences away, and cast your brand in an unfavorable light.

Aside from keyword stuffing, Patel says another way that brands may be overdoing their SEO is through excessive linking. It's perfectly fine to insert a few relevant and high-quality links, but creating content “for the sole reason of generating links” can make your content seem like spam and undermine your credibility.

 

3. The hard sell

The first thing to remember when creating content? “Don't sell,” says Simon Kearney, CEO and editor-in-chief of Singapore-based content marketing firm Click2View, in this Inc. Southeast Asia article.

Everyone knows that, ultimately, companies create content in order to promote their brand. But being preoccupied with selling turns people off. Hence, subtlety is key.

Writes Patel, “Content marketing is not about making a ‘quick and dirty sale.’ [It’s] a big-picture strategy where you should focus on achieving long-term success where you build relationships, nurture leads, and get repeat business."

Manila-based Booky, a restaurant listing and booking app, is a good example of a brand that does this well. Their widely-shared blog posts -- about new restaurants to check out, interesting dishes, and a monthly “Top 10 Most Loved Restaurants” in different cities in the Philippines -- don't reek “blatant self-promotion” but still successfully drive traffic to their company.

 

4. Choosing quantity over quality

Some marketers believe that they can beat their competitors simply by creating more content. But content marketing isn't just a numbers game. More isn't necessarily better, and Patel argues that Google's algorithm updates such as Penguin and Panda are proof that "quality trumps everything else."

In fact, overexerting yourself to create more may lead to sub-par content, and may even overwhelm your audience.

The smarter move, then, is to create an ample amount of high-quality, well-thought-out content that is published at a sustainable pace.