Content marketing is nothing new. It no longer packs the surprise or comes tinged with the controversy that it once did. Most small business owners are aware of how beneficial content marketing can be; they know that they should be blogging and Facebooking, and in fact—if the statistics are to be believed—more small business owners are embracing content marketing every single day.
Ironically enough, the increased implementation of content marketing is one of the biggest hurdles to entry. A new business owner can frankly feel daunted by all the competition out there. After all, if everyone is doing content marketing, doesn’t that make it significantly more difficult for any one brand to stand out? For every company that establishes a truly vital social media presence, aren’t there hundreds of others that toil away and never get a lot of traction?
It’s true: Content marketing is an increasingly crowded field, and that might seem at first like an impediment to doing it effectively. Here is the thing, though: A lot of small business owners are doing content marketing these days, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that a lot of them are doing it well.
Just think for a moment about some of the small businesses in your community or niche. How many of them consistently commit one or more of the following errors?
- Inconsistent social media posting—eight Facebook posts one day, then two weeks of radio silence.
- Confused brand messaging—posts that span a variety of topics and don’t necessarily reflect a consistent brand identity.
- Poor engagement—content that, for whatever reason, never accumulates any real traction with users.
- Bland, boring, unoriginal content—headlines that aren’t compelling and posts that just rehash what other brands are saying.
- Poor choice of social platforms—a company with a less-than-photogenic product, for some reason wasting its time on Instagram.
- Poor lead capturing—not many posts sending traffic to landing pages, or a general lack of calls to action.
- Content lacking in visual appeal, or in visual branding consistency.
- Websites or blogs that are not optimized for mobile devices.
The list goes on and on, but the point is this: While there are a lot of content marketing amateurs out there, there aren’t necessarily a lot of content marketing experts. And for small business owners, that’s actually a very good thing indeed.
It’s a good thing because it means that content marketing’s prevalence is not necessarily a hurdle. Instead, it’s an opportunity. Everybody is doing content marketing, but very few are doing it well—so the door is wide open for you to come in, really master the art and science of content marketing, and distinguish yourself as your industry’s most notable authority.
In short, though content marketing is a crowded field, there is as much room as ever for your business to develop a competitive edge. All it takes is the decision to really invest in it—to make it your priority to get content marketing right when so many of your peers get it wrong.