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5 content marketing mistakes for small businesses to avoid

Posted by Tasnim Ahmed

August 11, 2023

A brilliant content marketing strategy has the potential to raise brand awareness, boost traffic and generate high-quality leads, thus boosting the sales and revenue of your business. In fact, the 12th Annual B2B Content Marketing survey reveals that a staggering number of marketers have been successful in achieving their business goals of creating brand awareness (80%), building credibility (75%) and educating audiences (70%). Besides, content marketing budgets have catapulted with 69% of businesses planning to increase their content marketing budgets in 2023.

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But, devising a content marketing strategy and its tactical execution can be challenging at times, particularly for small businesses. They often tend to make mistakes that could have a huge impact on their brand visibility, and ability to draw in and convert customers.

Listed below are five content marketing mistakes that small businesses should avoid.

Content marketing mistake #1: Not having a master plan

Small businesses tend to dive headfirst into content marketing without a master plan. As a small business owner, if you don’t have one, your efforts will be inconsistent and futile, which could cause your audience to lose interest in the brand.

The master plan needs to be clear with an effective strategy and excellent tactical execution. For instance, you may use community forums or discussion boards to know the pulse of your target audience, gain valuable insight, and figure out how to modify your messaging to suit your audience’s needs.

Devise a plan that specifies objectives, takes the target audience into account, and matches the appropriate formats to those objectives in order to take off. This will assist in producing more targeted and compelling content that appeals to the “ideal” client.

Content marketing mistake #2: Not understanding the target audience

“Understanding what your audience needs and values will be your key to content marketing success in 2023,” states Semrush Director of Organic Search Kyle Byers. According to their recent survey, this is one of the key factors determining the success of a content marketing strategy. The survey revealed that 47% of respondents conduct audience research and 44% said improving the quality as well as the value of their content has resulted in success.

Failing to understand your target audience and producing content without considering what is important to your customers or the manner in which it will help them is the second most common mistake you can make with content marketing.

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Any content you generate, no matter how good you believe it is, will be of no use if it does not resonate with your target audience. Besides, you will fail to attract and engage new clients if you cannot generate meaningful content for which you must first understand your clients’ challenges and end goals.

Remember, your business success and content efficiency are dependent on your ability to identify and engage with your target audience.

Content marketing mistake #3: Not focusing on SEO

Investing in search engine optimization (SEO) should be a priority for your business as it is a crucial part of content marketing. SEO is how your content will be discovered online principally in search engine result pages (SERPs). According to 2023 HubSpot research, “nearly one-third of marketers use a website to attract and convert leads, while a majority of site traffic comes from search engines.”

Without SEO your content cannot be discovered online which can ultimately result in no traffic. A good SEO strategy will make sure that you are developing content that people are actually searching for.

Content marketing mistake #4: Not limiting sales-focused content

Most businesses end up making extremely promotional or sales-orientated content in order to drive sales, but that’s not how it should be. Sales might be the end objective of your content marketing strategy, but pushing it too hard is likely to drive your audience away resulting in a low success rate.

Instead, you should aim for establishing brand trust and adding value to the lives of your audience through content that is useful, solution-focused, educational, engaging as well as entertaining. This will ignite their interest, create credibility, and increase the likelihood of content shareability.

Content marketing mistake #5: Not reviewing performance

Investing time in reviewing and analyzing your content marketing statistics can provide you with great insights and a database that can be used to drive your future content strategy.

If a content piece does exceptionally well, marketers can remodel it or leverage the strategy which worked with the audience. To know what works for you and what does not, you must evaluate content marketing performance by analyzing the data.

Consider metrics like click-through rates, social media shares, page views, traffic sources, and the amount of time visitors spend looking at a content piece online to gauge whether your campaign performed well or not.  

If you choose not to monitor and conduct reviews on a regular basis, your efforts go to waste.

Want more? Escalon has helped thousands of small businesses maximize their potential with our back-office solutions for accounting, HR, benefits, payroll and recruiting, insurance and taxes — and we can help yours too. Talk to an expert today.

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This material has been prepared for informational purposes only. Escalon and its affiliates are not providing tax, legal or accounting advice in this article. If you would like to engage with Escalon, please contact us here.


Tasnim Ahmed
Tasnim Ahmed

Tasnim Ahmed is a content writer at Escalon Business Services who enjoys writing on a multitude of subjects that include finops, peopleops, risk management, entrepreneurship, VC and startup culture. Based in Delhi NCR, she previously contributed to ANI, Qatar Tribune, Marhaba, Havas Worldwide, and curated content for top-notch brands in the PR sphere. On weekends, she loves to explore the city on a motorcycle and binge watch new OTT releases with a plateful of piping hot dumplings!

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