Diving into content creation and digital marketing as a young business can be a daunting prospect, but luckily there’s plenty of social media and marketing experts around to share tips on what not to do when promoting your business online.
Writing for Entrepreneur, social media strategist and blogger Lesya Liu revealed her first foray into blogging and content creation lead to a “ton” of rookie marketing mistakes, including accidentally posting a cat article to her company’s social media page.
While the article actually received a high level of engagement, Liu says there are plenty of other common marketing mistakes being made online, any one of which could have a “much more significant negative effect on your digital presence than an accidental cat post”.
Here are her eight tips to avoid making a digital marketing mistake.
1. Don’t think if you blog it, they will come
“Don’t rely on someone accidentally stumbling upon your blog; even the best content needs promotion,” Liu says.
“Assuming your content is top notch, you still need to be active on social media sites to push this content where people will see it.”
2. Keep old posts updated
A common misconception when curating blog posts is to keep making new ones when you have a fresh take on an idea you already covered, but Liu says this mindset can leave you struggling when trying to attract traffic to your website.
“Updating an old article is a very effective blogging technique. If you’re trying to build thought leadership, you have to ensure that every page on your website is true and accurate,” she says.
“Opinions, trends and data change over time. Links get broken. However, instead of writing out a whole new thing, just update an older post,” she says.
Liu also notes that Google also indexes updated pages better due to increased “relevancy”.
3. You don’t always need new content
“While you do need to post something consistently, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time. Take your most popular blog post and reuse the content by creating an infographic, creating a video, developing a webinar or podcast series to further expand on the topic,” recommends Liu.
“Different forms of content will also attract new audiences who prefer one content form over another.”
4. Collect emails always
Even if you’re not planning to send out a newsletter or something similar any time soon, Liu advises businesses should endeavour to collect readers’ email addresses wherever possible to prepare for a potential newsletter in the future.
“Your email list is still your biggest asset; this is a single digital marketing channel that brings in the best ROI,” she says.
“People who are willing to share their email address with you signal their interest in your content or possible products. Don’t reject their interest, because once you have a product, a launch, or just a simple newsletter, you’ll be able to let these people know.”
5. Don’t choose every social platform
While spraying your content across every social platform you can find might sound like the best way to get noticed, Liu thinks business owners should choose a few and concentrate on them.
“Instead of spreading yourself thinly, build meaningful connections and impressive following on just a couple of networks, where you can consistently bring value and quality,” she says.
“Think about your content and where it would be most appropriate.”
6. There’s no such thing as a free like
“There is still some kind of stigma, where if companies promote their content it’s looked down upon. Well, smart marketers understand the need to boost their content reach to see real results,” Liu writes, in reference to boosting and promoting posts on social media.
“Never promote your stuff just to be seen by anyone. Use highly-targeted strategies that will ensure that your content is seen by the audiences who need to see it.”
7. Keep sharing your content
Developing a top-quality, polished piece of content to promote your business is useless if you only promote it once, says Liu, who recommends budding online marketers share their content multiple times for the best effect.
“You have to post the content more than once to ensure that a lot of people see it. Experiment with different copy, headings, and images for social updates. Share your older posts you feel especially proud of,” she says.
8. Get personal, but not too much
“While no one wants to read your rants or complaints, or see obsessive amounts of cute cat photos, showing your human side is ok,” says Liu.
“You might be surprised at how much engagement you can get on a simple post talking about your interests and hobbies, because passion is what really drives humans.
“Social media is about being social, so encourage conversation, encourage information exchange and sharing. Because, you know, sharing is caring.”