Without a pharaonic budget, a company is now as likely to grow with content marketing as a mountain dweller to climb Everest in stilettos. The era of almighty content marketing is already coming to an end …
Unless you’ve spent the last few years in a gulag in North Korea, you must have read many times that content marketing – the art of raising visibility and harpooning leads with informative content on the canvas – represents the panacea for business growth.
Almost all digital gurus say it, with the help of amazing statistics, impressive figures and returns on investments to make any dishonest trader salivate: producing content costs less than traditional advertising and pays much more in the long run.
It’s not false. But this is no longer true either! Building your reputation without bleeding is now a miracle.
Welcome to the world of Care Bears
Let me explain. Garden side, Content marketing resembles the world of Care Bears: the content creation agencies make you believe that the bosses are in ecstasy, as visitors flock, brand awareness increases, prospects become customers and income increases.
At the same time, the same agencies claim that the Internet users rejoice because they can binge on your business’s content to the full.
On the courtyard side, reality is far from being as flourishing.
Indeed, today, a successful content marketing strategy requires, in addition to rigorous planning, significant financial and human resources, as well as quite specific communication skills.
How much should a box invest to rhyme visibility and spinoffs, notoriety and quality, flights and money? Basically, a tens of thousands of euros per month. Or, at minimum, a part-time position, internally.
Businesses lack resources
However, the self-employed, VSEs or SMEs capable of releasing such resources or having the necessary communication skills are as numerous as the dictators who unconditionally support democracy on the planet.
Certainly, lay a handful of texts on his blog, swing two or three visuals on Instagram, share a weekly article on LinkedIn, tweet a few sentences and post a video on YouTube, many are capable of it.
On the other hand, maintain both the pace (ideally once a week, on all platforms) and the substance turns out to be a Herculean task that few manage to accomplish.
The real benefits of content marketing as a communication strategy are often seen after long months of effort constant and sustained.
Do you have fingers? Use them!
At this point, let me make a little aside. Publishing high value-added content, even sporadically and without a real overview, will always bear fruit.
It’s always taken from the competition that remains, her fingers crossed!
Less sharing on networks
The problem is that today, regular content production is no longer enough to separate the voice of your business from the uninterrupted and frankly irritating hubbub of the web.
Regular content production is no longer enough to separate the voice of your business from the uninterrupted and frankly irritating hubbub of the web.
For two reasons: first, the publication of content increases each year exponentially; second, social media sharing is worrisome, according to a recent study by TrackMaven.
A king without power
For a long time, content was king. In the age of information overload, Her Majesty certainly has a few gems on her crown, but his power has eroded considerably and the end of the reign seems to be inexorably approaching.
The king is (almost) dead, long live the confusion!
In response to these developments, many brands, including world famous players, are breaking their piggy banks to be read, in sponsoring their content or by paying influencers (bloggers or youtubers) to talk about it.
Consequently, in addition to the cost of production, there are now often often higher costs of dissemination.
Has content marketing, as a lever for growth, become totally utopian for the majority of companies?
The note quickly becomes salty and beyond the reach of more modest budgets, the very people who could, in the past, almost compete on equal terms with the giants of com, with a simple stroke of the pen.
A growth lever that no longer raises anything…
Also, a controversial question deserves to be asked: has content marketing, as a growth driver, become totally utopian for the majority of companies that are not multinationals?
Raising such a question probably amounts to sawing the branch – and the trunk at the same time – on which the editors and the digital agencies are seated.
I admit it without shame: for years, I strongly encouraged companies to make content marketing a creed. I haven’t turned my jacket over, far enough, but just changed my tune.
It is true that, in digital communication, dogmas evolve much faster than elsewhere …
Miracles are expensive
So, what can you ask, to get your SME’s business off the ground without breaking the bank? Without wanting to venture too far from my flower beds, it seems to me essential to:
- titivate your website, which remains the most important pillar of your communication;
- Pamper your existing customers and prospects;
- Go on a quest new contracts using traditional prospecting and networking methods.
In conclusion, it is high time to put caveats in the discourse of marketers.
Nothing prevents you, of course, from producing content. It would be a shame to deprive yourself of it. But don’t expect miracles in return. Because for miracles, we must now bleed.