It’s official, companies of all sizes jumped on the content marketing bandwagon in 2015 and you’re likely one of them; and yet the promises of this marketing tool has left the majority of businesses confused, frustrated and left wondering why they are not getting results.
According to a new study by Gleanster, content marketing has become a huge priority and a bigger challenge than they expected.
According to the study of 3,408 B2B companies;
“Ineffiency in content production results in an estimated $958M each year in excessive spend for mid-to-large B2B US companies.”
In my own experience in working with hundreds of small businesses, I believe the problem may be even more chronic for most B2B small businesses that are overwhelmed in the day-to-day operations of their businesses and are inefficient with content marketing.
Many have given up on content marketing, blogging and digital marketing altogether thanks to the unfilled promises or a lack of time, energy and willingness to learn something new from scratch.
Yet, some small businesses are feeling the shift that the internet has put on their business when it comes to marketing.
They realize that the old days of traditional ads in newspapers or magazines just don’t work anymore and that just having a website doesn’t seem to deliver results the way it used to.
It’s left many wondering where to start or what to do when they don’t understand this evolving and changing internet world.
It seems easier to just stop the insanity and focus on the things you know, are comfortable with and can control.
You may be saying to yourself;
“There is so much I could do, that I ‘m told I should do, and it’s overwhelming! I don’t even know where to start so why bother wasting money on something I don’t think will work for my business.”
In the video above, I shared with you that I understand exactly what you’re going through.
Several years ago, I was that business owner who was reluctant to blog or learn a new skill and I owned a web development company.
In fact, I fought Twitter when it first became popular because I refused to learn how to use it and I would consider myself to be an early adopter when it comes to many new technologies.
But I’m also a pragmatist.
If it doesn’t make sense to me, I’m not going to just add something to my plate because someone said I should.
It has to make sense to me and I don’t have a lot of time on my hands to just dig around the web when there are better things I can do with my time.
But things are always changing and if we don’t take the time to learn and change with it, my business and your businesses will be left behind.
In this article, I’m going to share with you what the real problems are behind why content marketing is such a big challenge for many businesses, and I’m going to share a specific solution to this problem.
So, be sure to read the entire article and get a freebie at the end.
The $958 Million Dollar Content Marketing “Real” Problem
The Gleanster report revealed a number of struggles that mid-size B2B businesses are experiencing when it comes to digital marketing.
According to the study, the issue is that $958M is being wasted on inefficiencies in creating content.
Ask any small business owner or entrepreneur and they will tell you this is an issue they have been dealing with for a few years now.
It’s not anything new, but it’s nice to know that those businesses with large budgets and loads of resources are experiencing the same problems that small businesses are experiencing.
Every week, I’m asked some variation of the same questions small businesses are experiencing:
- How do you create content?
- How do you find ideas or topics for engaging content?
- What is engaging content?
- How do I find the time?
- How do you determine if the content is effective?
What are the real problems that are leading to a lack of results and inefficiencies in creating content?
Are these real problems or are they the symptoms?
In my opinion, backed up by a lot of independent research (some of which you can find on the “Begin Here” page of my site) and ten years of experience working hundreds of small businesses, it is a lack of a coherent, consistent message that guides you to understand:
- What to communicate and what not to communicate
- What to do and what not to do.
- What to create and what not to create.
- What to prioritize and what not to prioritize
The real problem that leads to confusion, complexity, lack of results and inefficiency is a lack of a message.
What is a Message and How Do You Create It?
A message in my opinion is nothing more than having a clear understanding of “what business you’re really in.”
It’s the answer to “What do you do?” in a way that makes people perk up, take notice and start asking themselves, or you, questions.
A message defines you and makes you relevant to those who consume your content.
A message is a window into the soul of your business.
[Tweet “Your message is your brand and the window into the soul of your business”]
A message is so compelling that 20% or more of those who consume your content say “OMG, how did you know?” and are inspired to do something with that content.
The difference between those businesses that are inefficient in creating content and are losing money from those who create relevant content that makes them money is specificity.
Specificity in content marketing means that you create one piece of content, for one person, who has one problem/need/desire and offers one solution.
How do you learn to create content for one person/business, with one problem (need or desire) and offer one solution?
In my one-day BootCamps, or in the 4-6 week program (2 hours per week), I take my clients on a self-discovery journey where each one learns more about themselves and their business than they could ever imagine.
I take them through the following questions that lead them to deep clarity:
- What are the “specific” problems you are passionate about solving?
- What are the tangible values your customers experience and how do they feel about the experience?
- What are the “specific” problems you solve for each tangible value?
- Who are you “specifically” solve each problem for (in detail)?
- How are your products or services “a” part of “a” solution?
Do you remember above that I said that your message defines your business and makes you relevant to your audience?
This is how you do it.
There are no shortcuts that can help you.
The only way to do this is to either do the work or discover it over time by accident.
The Results of a Great Message
The results of a great message are:
- Relevance to those who need what you have to offer.
- An increase in the numbers in your sales funnel.
- An increase of new customers and cash flow.
- A clear understanding of what content to create.
- A clear understanding of who to create content for.
- Massive increase in communication between departments, supervisors and teams.
- A sense of mission and purpose company-wide.
- An increase of efficiency across the board in creating content.
If you’re contributing to the $950M inefficiency losses in the marketplace due to not understanding content marketing, it’s time to get clear about your business.
Content marketing is 90% messaging and 10% processes, systems and strategies. #contentmarketing @donpurdum
Clarity creates simplicity and simplicity is the key to success, even in complex environments.
What is the process that one goes through to create a simple message that delivers results?
Here is an example of the workflow process:
Phase 5 -> Execution and review, and revise as needed.
Hopefully, this process helps you understand why so many are inefficient and struggling when it comes to content marketing.
Because we are overwhelmed and we don’t know where to start, we start at what seems to be the most logical place and that’s at Phase 3.
The overwhelming majority of small businesses skip Phase 1 all together and this is the root of where the inefficiencies exist and why content marketing doesn’t work.
These are all progressive stages that build on top of one another.
Just like when you build a house you have to start with the foundation or the house will quickly fall apart, the same is true of building a content marketing program that yields results.
Without Phase 1, phases 2-5 are either incomplete or become total failures.
Do you identify with any of these frustrations?
- You’ve been told content marketing works but it isn’t working for you and you’ve wasted a lot of money with no results…
- You hired a freelancer or a marketing company to help you create content marketing but still no one is contacting you and the results are pitiful…
- You’re team is inefficient and always behind deadlines and it’s costing your company money…
- You don’t know what content to create or specifically for whom…
- You’re tired of throwing money down the drain…
- Your business feels like it’s falling further and further behind and it’s harder and harder to fill the sales funnel…
If any of these are you, then contact me today!
You’ll be able to say what Vijay said after a recent Bootcamp:
“I will never see my business the same way again. This changes everything!”
Do you have a question, thought or idea and want to share with me and my readers? Leave a comment below in the comments section and let’s chat!