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Content Marketing Rule #1 - KISS: Keep It Straight & Simple

Nov 21, 2016
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Content Marketing Rule #1.pngThe internet is full of content and sadly, much of it is junk. Content is essential for any brand, agency or company looking to get found and create connections. Content marketing is only a powerful tool when you do it right. Just hitting publish isn’t going to get you where you want to go. Quality is just as important as quantity. So when it comes to creating stellar content, let’s look at the #1 rule for success, KISS: Keep It Straight & Simple.

While some get lucky with their content strategy and see results right away, for most of us, inbound marketing is a long-term strategy. Sure, there are a number of ways to get quick wins, but becoming an industry thought leader doesn’t happen overnight. It takes days, weeks, months and even years of grinding. Many people never reap the benefits of their content strategy because they quit before they see results. A good content strategy requires hustle. In order to make it through the good and the bad days, having a straight forward and simple approach will help you persist. 
 

Say What You Mean: Be Authentic

 
Want to know the secret to getting people to connect? BE YOURSELF. Today’s consumer is looking for authenticity. If you fake it, over promise, or try to be something you’re not, you look untrustworthy. Trust is a commodity that you must earn. By being who you are you allow your audience the ability to get to know you. People want to do business with people. Let your personality come through in your content. Whether it’s a blog, video or presentation, make it you. 
 

Don't Go Overboard On "Creativity." It's Confusing

 
Have you ever experienced something “creative” that really didn’t make sense? It’s totally OK to be creative, but just don’t go too far. A good example of this is Skittles ads. You know the one where the kid has “Skittlepox.” Not only is it weird (which is ok if it’s true) it comes off like they are trying too hard. Skittles has made this work for them because they have used the tactic consistently. But just because if worked for them, doesn’t mean it will work for you. Authenticity and creativity should work together. When looking for a way to creatively express your brand, make sure that you are not pushing away your intended audience. If they don’t get it, you lose. 
 
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Use The Available Channels and Be Consistent

 
There are a number of great channels to get your content out. Blogging on your own site or sites like Medium, posting to social channels like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and video content marketing on YouTube are just a few. The key is finding where your audience hangs out and engage with them there. With so many free platforms there is no excuse not to use them. Once you set up your profiles, make sure that the content you push out on each of these channels is consistent. The user should be able to know who is speaking to them no matter whether it's a blog, video, or social post. It can be overwhelming to get started on all these channels. This is why simple is a better strategy. It’s easier to scale. You want to be able to effectively get a lot of your content out and trying to “think outside the box” all the time will drain you. Use what you have and create a simplified strategy that will allow you to use all the channels available to you.
 
Content marketing is so much more than hitting the publish button. The companies, entrepreneurs, and brands that see success are the ones that have the guts to keep putting out great content even when they don’t see big results. The results will come if you have something to say. Consumers are hungry for great content. They want to read, watch and engage with interesting and authentic people. They want straight forward answers and not overly creative messages that need to be decoded. Use the channels you have available to you and be consistent. Content marketing isn’t rocket science. Keep it straight and simple. 
 
Contextual Marketing | Inbound Marketing
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Ryan Shelley, CPBI

By Ryan Shelley, CPBI

Ryan is passionate about helping companies make a more personal connection online with their customers and prospects. He is a regular contributor to Search Engine Land, the largest and most popular SEO news site on the web. His works has also been featured on the HubSpot Blog, Business2Community and by LinkedIn Marketing solutions.

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