10 content marketing rules that are made to be broken
Rules are meant to be broken, as the common saying says, and this extends to content marketing. When researching how to write the best content for your marketing materials you have probably come across a lot of different rules which marketers say you must follow. However, the truth is, to create great content, these rules often need to be broken.
Of course, it is important to remember that these rules still have their place. It is not advisable to break them just because you can. Taking this approach requires careful consideration and exploration into seeing what works and what doesn’t.
So, hear is what our content marketing experts determined are rules ready to be broken.
1. Everyone needs a blog
Blogs aren’t always the best solution for creating content which connects and builds trust with your audience. It is very common to hear that all businesses need a blog, but that is not true. Whether or not you need a blog depends entirely on your strategy. If you find your target audience doesn’t respond well to long-form written content, then you shouldn’t have to create it. There are so many other methods and platforms you can use to connect with your customers. Think of things like podcasts, videos, or even just keeping your customers updated on Instagram.
2. Sticking to what works
Sticking to what works can also have an unfortunate, negative name which we all need to avoid, stagnation. The content marketing world is constantly changing. Who would have thought two years ago that Tik Tok would be a huge platform to reach out to a potential market with, then who thought 6 months ago it would be under threat of being banned? Change happens rapidly and is often unexpected. Just sticking to what you know works and never adapting can very quickly lead to stagnation.
3. Following the formula
Formulas are great. They make it really easy to start on a base which you know works. However, it is important that once you have built this stable foundation, you can build something fun and unique. We see it across our cities every day. Boxy skyscrapers that are a big rectangle in the sky, right next to another box which looks almost exactly the same. Why be the box when you can be the next architectural marvel, causing jaws to drop in awe, and thousands of people sharing their love of you every day with their friends and family. Both start with similar foundations; one just does something different when it grows. When creating content, don’t be the box, break out of that formula and be the next world wonder.
4. Repeat what works elsewhere
Sure repeating what your competitors do gets you on their level, but what makes you stand out? It is all too common for business of particular industries to think they have to be a certain way. Banks for example. Why do all banks have to be super boring and serious just because they are in a regulated industry. Banks can be fun, the notion that they have to be serious is not true. So, take what seems to be the norm in your industry and do something different, flip it on its head. It has the potential to work well, and attract those sick of the industry.
5. Do only what has worked
The idea of copying previous businesses that have found success in the industry doesn’t necessarily guarantee success for your business. Often the potential of their tactic may have faded as others copy it. To find success in your industry try doing something different, create your own style and tone of voice.
6. Create content for contents sake
Creating content just to have your hand in content marketing is not a good attitude to have. Sometimes not being involved in a topic is the best way to approach things. Look instead to providing quality content which your target audience enjoys and suits your brand.
7. View content as text, images, video, audio
Content is more than just a series of words, images, videos or audio. Content is about building connections and growing trust. This is how people engage with it. They don’t like an image because it is an image but because it speaks to them and helps them feel connected with your brand.
8. Only focus on benefits
Everyone is selling the benefits of their products and services. But if you are selling the same products or services as your competitors, then in all likelihood you have the exact same benefits. So why should a consumer choose you over your competitor? Instead of focusing solely on the benefits, tell your buyers why you are best qualified to deliver those benefits. What unique capabilities do you have over your competitors?
9. People have short attention spans
This is not necessarily true. If you deliver great content that is worth their time you will have their attention. While you may only have a few seconds to keep them watching or reading, creating good content is what is important. If you are delivering high quality content consistently, you will have their attention.
10. People don’t like long content
Just like short attention spans this is also not necessarily true. People will certainly read or watch long content if it is engaging. Just think about all the TV shows people binge in a day, or the long books they read in a matter of hours. If the content is great and hooks them in they will stay.
Breaking the rules and doing something new and unique for your content is one of the best things you can do for your business. As long as you make sure the direction you go has been thought through and is in line with what your audience wants. Be creative, test new things, and see how it goes.
If you need help creating awesome content which helps you stand out in your industry, come have a chat with our content creation team and see what they can come up with.