Content Marketing: 4 FATAL Errors That Are Limiting Your ROI in H2 2023


Content is king… but in a post-Covid world, it is emperor! In fact, as the study explains, the amount of content consumed in 2020 has simply doubled compared to 2018, and the average internet user now spends 6 hours and 59 minutes getting information online, compared to just 3 hours and 17 minutes before the pandemic.

On the other hand, all the studies that have investigated the behaviour of the post-COVID buyer converge on one conclusion: buyers have never been so autonomous in their approach, generally preferring to build up their own culture before requesting a meeting with a potential service provider.

Companies have understood this, with 90% of B2B marketers and 86% of B2C marketers incorporating content marketing into their strategy, according to Marketing Profs. Better still: according to the same study, content marketing has the best ROI of all the other tactics in the digital marketing arsenal… even if this variable is relatively complicated to measure. In fact, when carried out according to the rules, content marketing costs 62% less on average than advertising and generates three times as many leads.

Content is more than ever at the heart of your acquisition strategy… provided you avoid fatal errors. Here are 4 ways to step up your game in S2 2023!

Mistake No. 1: not knowing the ROI of your content

Granted, measuring the impact of content on booking is not the easiest task. The main difficulty lies in the fact that content, unlike other more direct marketing investments, often has an indirect and long-term impact on sales. It can increase brand awareness, strengthen customer loyalty, boost the visibility of your website, and consolidate your image… benefits that are harder to quantify than a direct conversion via paid advertising, for example (and even then, with the imminent disappearance of third-party cookies, measuring attribution will become less obvious).

You must avoid the temptation of “vanity metrics”, KPIs that in no way reflect the performance of your strategy, such as the total number of views or followers. Taken out of context, these variables may indeed seem impressive, but they don’t necessarily give an accurate picture of success. A video can have thousands of views with a click-through rate close to zero.

Instead, you should focus on business metrics such as conversion rate and cost per acquisition (CPA). Here’s a complementary approach: you can compare the performance of customers you’ve acquired through Content Marketing efforts with those acquired through advertising: retention rate, Customer Lifetime Value, average ticket, etc.

Let’s digress for a moment to talk about the difficulty of giving back to Content Marketing what belongs to Content Marketing.

According to an Ehrenberg-Bass study, companies change suppliers or service providers approximately every 5 years. By construction, only 20% of the companies in your target market are in the market over a year, and 5% over a quarter.

Logically, 95% of the remaining potential customers are not necessarily interested in your services at the moment “M”, even if they fall within your target. This fact, which may seem discouraging, actually calls for a long-term branding and awareness-building effort, and that inevitably involves content. This is the only way to “speak” to your entire target audience, and in particular to the 95% who are not particularly attuned to the market but who will be in the more or less near future… so that they remember you when the time comes to make a decision. “Not many B2B customers are prepared to sign a contract with a company they’ve barely heard of before”, says the study report.

Mistake no. 2: believing you can be relevant and inspired every day

83% of marketers believe that it is more effective to publish qualitative content less often rather than average quality content more often (HubSpot State of Marketing Report). Even so, some marketers continue to favour quantity and frequency of publication, “to occupy the field”. According to eMarketer, over 60% of companies produce at least one piece of content a day. In itself, this frequency is not really a problem, but it does raise questions: can you really be creative, inspired, inspiring and relevant every day? With both text and images? It’s a question worth asking.

Rather than mechanically chaining content together, it might be wiser to consider a few more relevant tactics, reducing the quantity to save a little more time that can be allocated to relevance and quality:

Mistake no. 3: failing to modernise your positioning and communications

According to a PYMNTS study, almost three-thirds of B2B purchasing decisions are now made by millennials or Zoomers (generation Z). Digital-savvy and web-savvy, these young buyers are not (at all) receptive to cold, corporate speeches with their tongue in cheek. Basically, they expect relevance, content that gets straight to the point and adds value without promoting a product in every paragraph.

In terms of form, they expect content that is in tune with web culture, easy to consume, suitable for mobile use and, in some cases, with a minimum of ‘entertainment’.

Unsurprisingly, video content DOMINATES the B2B web:

Mistake No. 4: Neglecting the power of third-party content

Let’s start with a figure: 65% of those questioned in a survey conducted by DemandGen Report said they gave more credence to product/service tests and reviews written by their peers and to user-generated content than to company-generated content. In concrete terms, THIRD-party content triumphs over advertorials for buyers.

What can you do about this? It’s simple: ask for feedback from your most satisfied customers, be more present on review platforms to respond to positive reviews (to give them visibility) and respond to negative reviews (in the proper way) and, above all, consider an influencer marketing strategy.

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