This content marketing business is a funny old game. There might be times when you’re high-fiving the office as you watch the likes and comments click up on your latest masterpiece. But sometimes it can feel like you’re just one shifting algorithm away from disappearing into the ether of social media altogether.

The fact is, this is a constantly evolving world, with pitfalls and challenges littering the way to success. It can be a jungle out there, so in the name of preventing you from tearing your hair out and uttering the immortal words of this article’s title, here are a few of today’s most pressing content marketing challenges, and what you can do to overcome them.

Mowgli

1. Linking content marketing to ROI

Granted, it may not equate to taking a shower of cockroaches, but demonstrating the ROI of your content marketing efforts can be a similarity teeth-gritting experience. The Content Marketing Institute (CMI) reported that measuring the ROI of your content marketing efforts is within the top five challenges affecting marketers this year – approximately half (49%) of UK respondents chose this hurdle as their particular Achilles heel.

To overcome this hurdle, take your focus back to your core aims and objectives so that you can more easily define relevant and appropriate metrics to evaluate the impact your content marketing. Factors you might want to monitor include click-through rates for your call to action; how many of these leads are turning into fully fledged customers; the cost of bringing in and converting these leads; your customer retention rate; and the average revenue per customer. By evaluating these factors, it can help you tweak your content marketing efforts in a more targeted manner.

Thumbs up

2. Ensuring consistently engaging content

There’s no surer way to watch your content marketing dive-bomb than if your content isn’t consistently engaging – CMI found that producing engaging content was the top challenge cited by UK marketers (61%). Additionally, earlier this year, MarketingInsiderGroup.com reported on the Digiday Content Marketing Summit where marketers shared that content consistency was a central bugbear in the business.

Engagement is a tricky one – what is engaging to you or I might not be engaging to Joe Bloggs from up the road. However, CMI offers a few commonalities that run through content with high engagement rates: it grabs the audience’s attention; it is relevant or helps to educate; it has emotional resonance; it makes your audience laugh; or it offers something that can’t be found elsewhere.

In order to keep your team reading from the same prayer book, ensure you’re running a tight ship when it comes to your content creation process. Keep a shareable editorial calendar and ensure frequent meetings between teams so that they are all on board the same ship and not heading off in different directions, destined to watch your content sink without a trace.

Sinking

3. You’re in the shadow of a tough competitor

Maybe you’re new to this content marketing malarkey, but struggling to shine in the wake of a larger or more content-savvy competitor. Well, chin up – haven’t you heard the story of David and Goliath? The tortoise and the hare? Leicester City winning this year’s premier league? Sometimes the underdog ends up on top. Instead of bowing out of the competition, work on creating top-notch content – quality over quantity.

Analyse what they are doing content-wise that seems to be working and look for the gaps in their strategy so that you can offer something different. However, Kissmetrics suggests that building a smaller yet devoted following is a better strategy than trying to tempt away a competitor’s audience. Remember loyal followers count for more than numbers.

Loyal follower

4. Your SEO is a big old mess

Content marketing and SEO goes together like moustaches and 70s cop shows. If your SEO is a bit of a Monet (ok from a distance but up close a right royal mess), your sparkling content is likely to disappear, buried way back in Google’s pages. Instead of just ploughing on regardless, consider hiring an expert who can give your SEO a thorough audit and get you on track. That way your content has all the more chance of getting seen, read and above all of achieving the goals you want.

Ant and Dec

If you need a hand out of a content marketing pothole or some help to achieve a gold star just yell ‘I’m a content marketer… Get me out of here!’ It helps to get it all out.

Alternatively, give M2 Bespoke a call on 01225 720099 to see how we can assist.

Ben Hollom

November 28, 2016