Evaluating Our Content Strategy: Where Are We Going Wrong?

Long ago, someone said that if you’d build it, they would come — but obviously they weren’t talking about your website and the general public.

Unfortunately, building a site on the web isn’t all it takes to generate a buzz, you also need a content strategy. Just like with other aspects of your marketing, your website has to have a plan — otherwise, it’s just a great expense and potential embarrassment floating around in cyberspace.

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If your website traffic isn’t flowing, there’s a reason (or two….). Before you lose any more customers due to a lackluster Internet performance, ask yourself if you’re guilty of these common content strategy mistakes:

Having no content strategy. If you’re scratching your head wondering what a content strategy is, it’s a fair bet you don’t have one. Get a plan of action together! Figure out who your target demographic is and start blogging on topics relevant to them with a regular frequency, check in on social media several times a day and do it consistently. Even with a solid content strategy, it may take six months or more to see results — patience, consistency and follow-through matter here.

Poorly written content. The worst thing you can do for your website and your business is fill your corner of the web with poorly written content. In fact, Google will penalize you for it, dropping your website ranking until you’re buried on page 10 or 20 of its search results. Sure, it might seem like a good idea to spend as little as possible on content generated by people who speak English as a second language, but it’ll cost you a lot more than you saved when someone has to come in to clean up your Google penalties so your customers can find your site again.

Lack of updates. Almost as bad as poorly written content is no content whatsoever. You won’t get punished by Google, but you also won’t get new hits. In order for your website to generate attention, it must constantly produce something new. Blog posts can be tied to your social presence to keep the churn going on each of your marketing fronts, but you must publish regularly. More than a week between posts is enough for customers to begin to forget your face, but anything beyond twice a month spells disaster.

Outdated content. People go to the Internet to discover the latest and greatest, be that in news, products or services. For your content to be successful, it needs to push information on your newest offerings or news relevant to your customers. Outdated content doesn’t do anything but show the public how behind the times you really are.

Virtually no social presence. Having no social presence is a nearly unforgivable sin when it comes to content strategy. You don’t have to be on all the social networks, but you’d better pop in on Facebook or Twitter on a regular basis. Just having an account isn’t enough, though, you have to interact with your many fans to get more. Although it’s difficult to equate “Likes” to sales, there’s a strong correlation between companies with successful social media campaigns and those that remain in the forefront of customers’ minds.

Developing a content strategy that works for you may require a little out-of-the-box thinking — or even bringing in a contract writer to help you meet your many new deadlines — but the increase in traffic will give you the sales you’ve been looking for all along.