Ever since Google rolled out their crippling (and infamous) Panda update that pretty much flipped online marketing on its head – causing a plethora of websites to be ruthlessly penalised and shoved all the way down to Page 27 of Google’s SERPs (Search Engine Results Page) – content has been hailed as king.

And with good reason too. A greater focus on populating the internet with quality content has been the outcome, forcing businesses and brands to approach their online marketing strategies with a lot more love and far less links. Long gone are the days of link farming and black-hat SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) practices, the new-ish wave having replaced these deathly SEO tricks is strategic content management marketing.

The battle online for your audience’s time is vicious, and if you don’t implement a content marketing strategy to fight off your competitors and boost organic traffic to your site, then you’re doing this online marketing thing wrong.

Here’s 17 things that could be damaging your content marketing efforts:

According to the Lime Juice Communication mission, there are three prongs to content marketing that needs to be considered when creating a cohesive strategy, striking a balance amongst these will propel your strategy to proper heights, so; what are the pain points of your marketing plan?

Not giving your content enough TLC

  1. Use keywords smartly and sparingly – once or twice in the body of the article as well as in your article title is enough.
  2. Just because you’ve optimised your article title with keywords doesn’t mean it can’t be punchy. Craft compelling article titles because headlines are everything.
  3. When it comes to brand identity, consistency is key. Tone, brand messaging and personality needs to be cohesive in order to have a likeable online brand presence.
  4. Quantity is great but quality is better. One well-written, engaging article far outweighs five mediocre pieces of content.
  5. But that doesn’t mean quantity doesn’t matter anymore – publish quality posts regularly to maintain the interest of your audience. Use a content calendar to manage your content output, and aim for one post per week.
  6. Invest time in creating (or outsourcing) quality writing. Stop buying cheap content from freelance writers abroad. We all know the type, and while it’s enticing to bag low-cost copy churned out on demand, it may only hurt you in the long run (Google’s constant algorithm updates are sneaky, so spare yourself the stress of having a prospective mess on your hands once your site gets penalised).
  7. Always include calls to action in your content. If you want to turn your audience into buyers, never forget to include contact details or links to your ecommerce store in your copy.
  8. Tap into whatever trending conversations or news-worthy stories folks online are talking about and include it in your strategy.

Not cultivating a positive brand sentiment

  1. Build trust by being transparent. Don’t underestimate your audience’s intelligence, and being open about your brand or business’s processes and decisions serves in bolstering a positive digital footprint. Let your audience see behind the veil by including your writers’ gravatars or social media posts about office culture.
  2. Be engaging on your social media platforms – broadcasting your brand messaging won’t foster your Page any genuine Likes, socialising with your readers/ viewers is important. And measuring the level of Engagement is important too.
  3. Boring, bland content is your worst enemy. Ask yourself if your content is worth your reader’s time, if it’s not; don’t bother publishing it because you may just damage your online brand reputation.

Not optimising your content

  1. Repurpose a good piece of writing by publishing it in multiple formats. Make use of infographics, witty rich media, Instagram videos and the like, to get the highest output for your input.
  2. If your website is riddled with SEO mistakes or duplicate content from your past, be sure to clean it all up before implementing your new content marketing strategy. These ghosts of SEO past will only encumber your progress (and traffic).
  3. Get involved with other publishing sites or influential blogs and request to have your content posted there too. The wider your reach, the better.
  4. The need for link-building falls away when posting great content. People naturally share the stuff they like, and a link from a user is always better than 50 links posted to directories.
  5. Include links to “related posts” or create a “you might also like” section underneath published posts to keep users on your site and retain their attention.
  6. Recycle your best posts across your social accounts to re-cap the bits of great content that consistently drives traffic to your pages.