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Your Content Marketing Sucks – Challenge Your Audience Instead

Here’s what you do when the killer content you’ve been producing isn’t generating good enough numbers.

Here’s the scenario: Conference room, content team gathered, editorial calendar spreadsheets gleaming from laptop screens, pen-scribbled topic ideas on notebook paper, and…your team is drawing a blank.
You sense creative burnout after months of developing blog posts, case studies, tweets, native ads, sponsored content and more. Worse still, you’ve reviewed your analytics and the killer content you thought you’ve been producing isn’t generating the engagement numbers you expected.
You’ve been there! So how can you solve this all-too-common issue? How can you produce dynamic content that draws viewers and brand influence if you don’t know what’s working or what your readers expect from you? Or, worse yet, if they consider your content boring? It’s a big problem for all content marketers.

Content challenges

Hubspot noted in a recent blog post that both consumer and business content marketers share similar challenges in continually coming up with great content. B2B marketers (54%) and B2C (50%) marketers cited as one of their major challenges the task of producing engaging content. Creating good content is difficult over time, especially content that builds leads, drives conversions and adds to the bottom line.
Listen, we’ve all been “Five tips to better your life”-ed to death. Why not drop the veil of teacher-coach and instead challenge and provoke your audience? Now is the time to question the (internal and external) processes, mix up the tactics and muck around with the fundamental elements of your content marketing. Be bold, be authentic, go forth!

Manic methods

Here are a few manic methods to liven up your dull content marketing:

  • Involve your audience: Ask your audience, “Got creativity?” Challenge your audience to contribute content ideas for company swag and gadget prizes.
  • Hack the brand contest: Dare your audience to hack your brand and find new ways to capture market segments.
  • Expand your channels:Are you only spreading your content on Facebook and Twitter? Now’s the time to broaden your reach with different content for different channels. Try snappy Instagram videos, Snapchat snippets and Vine videos. Widen your reach to widen your audience.

People want fresh content. In fact, they’re demanding more content from every channel. Engagement is key, so do what you have to do to make it happen.
In a nutshell: Throw away the old playbook and research how people search online for valuable information, in what patterns and how often. In doing so, you’ll open up new ways to do content, and challenge your audience to new levels of engagement.

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