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The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as “a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience – and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

Simple enough for everybody, right?

Well, unfortunately not.

While this definition seems quite clear, precise and eloquent, a lot of folks approach content marketing with misconceptions about what contenting marketing is and how to implement it.

Let’s examine a few content marketing myths and debunk them to help get some clarity of what content marketing is and is not.

Here are the top content marketing myths: 

“Content is all you need for content marketing.”
FALSE. While content may be the foundation or fuel, you need the strategy behind the content. How does this content impact your audience/customers? What value does it have to them? There are so many other elements such as the people, plan and process to help drive your content marketing. Content distribution and content syndication are just as important to content marketing as the actual content. 

“The more content, the better.”
FALSE. Some organizations create massive amounts of content for the sake of creating massive amounts of content. Sure, you can bombard your audience with marketing content, but is it targeted? Are you sending so much random content into the universe that it induces content overload fatigue? Consider quality vs quantity.

“Content Marketing is just about your company brand.”
FALSE. While content marketing can build up your brand, you must keep your audience/customers in mind and create something that resonates with them. Unfortunately, many marketing organizations just want to “talk, talk and talk” how fantastic their product or solution is. Why should the customer care? Does it solve the customer’s problem? Content, in general, is everywhere, serving different purposes for different teams. Content marketing is less about you, your products and services, and more about your customer.

“Content Marketing costs too much”
FALSE. While your goal is to create stellar content, it doesn’t have to come with an astronomical price tag. As an example, blogs are relatively inexpensive to publish if your organization already has one in place. And the promotion on various social channels (from Twitter, Facebook, to LinkedIn) may not cost you anything at all. A solid amplification plan will help sustain the visibility of your content over time. As mentioned in a previous post, there is also the power of repurposing content.

Overall, Content Marketing is a strategic solution to attract customers with content they will actually appreciate. The goal of content marketing is to build trust and loyalty, not directly sell products. If your content doesn’t address your potential customer’s needs, why are you creating content at all? Keep your customer in mind — their challenges, needs and benefits — and you’ll be on track to developing messaging that connects with them.

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