What is a myth?

Quite simply, a myth is a story about a widely held belief which is false, a deliberate misrepresentation of the truth or an exaggerated or idealised conception of something. 

We’ve all heard about Theseus and the Minotaur, Jason and the Argonauts and the tales of brave Ulysses. They are all myths. 

There are also some more modern myths, including a whole batch related to content marketing; already one of marketing’s most contentious disciplines.  

Here we debunk 5 of the most common content marketing myths. 

Content marketing myth #1 - Build it and they will come 

You’ve built a website which highlights your offer. And as an essential service for your target market, visitors will just come to the site, right? Wrong.  

They probably don’t even know that your product or service is available from you. 

You need to attract visitors to your site through great content that is well promoted, they aren’t just going to turn up. The content needs to be carefully targeted to your buyer personas – don’t rely on a scatter gun approach in the vane hope that it may just hit the mark. 

 

Content marketing myth #2 - Creation is more important than promotion 

Content creators will often sit back and, like Peter Pan, exclaim ‘oh the cleverness of me!’ without thinking about how they are actually going to market their work.  

Your words may be golden, your infographics engaging but how are you going to attract your buyers if they don’t know your content is there in the first place?  

Answer: engage in some social media promotion.  

It’s a circular process.  

Once you have promoted your work you need to measure its reach and effectiveness, then repurpose your content and listen to your audience as they engage with it further. 

Content marketing myth #3 - Quantity over quality  

There was a notion that blogs and news articles had to be of a certain length to rank on search engines. Typically, a piece of 300-600 words was considered sufficient, as long as you’d included references to the key words and phrases that you wanted to be found for. You could also chuck in a few links. 

This isn’t really the case anymore thanks to Google’s RankBrain algorithm AI learning system.  

Basically, RankBrain attempts to guess what users mean in their searches, records the results and then adapts them to create better user satisfaction.  

It’s allowed Google to speed up the algorithmic testing for keyword categories in an attempt to choose the best content for any particular keyword search.  

Old methods of gaming the rankings with false signals are becoming less and less effective.  

Content of the highest quality, from a human perspective, is now consistently ranking better in Google. 

Content marketing myth #4 - It’s all about the SEO 

Similar to myth #3, your content should be human and show empathy with the audience you’re writing for.  

You’ve identified their pain points and want to help them to solve their problems. The content you create should do this. 

Don’t just write for the benefit of machines. Simply filling your content with keywords and phrases is no longer cool and doesn’t always help you in search engine rankings.  

In fact, content that is produced in this way is more likely to be penalized by the likes of Google meaning your search rankings will suffer as a result. Don’t do it! 

Content marketing myth #5 - It’s all about free content  

There is the belief that to give maximum value to our prospects and leads, we should give our content away – without asking for anything in return. Not true.  

The more valuable the content we produce, the more we should be asking for in exchange – and the more likely visitors are to provide their contact details. 

To action this and to turn our prospects into leads, we should include great calls to action in our copy.  

These should direct visitors to landing pages where they are encouraged to fill in a form. This inevitably turns an unknown visitor into a known lead and allows them to progress along their buyer’s journey.  

So, there you go - 5 content marketing myths complete with solutions.  

If you’ve enjoyed this read and would like some help with your content marketing strategy, visit olsenmetrix.com or give us a call on 0333 101 0075. We’d love to chat anything from content creation to buyer journeys.