All website owners allude to the positive value that great content has. In addition, they are aware of the benefits that content marketing has in compelling prospects and target audiences to their intended action.
Writing is an integral part of creating content. However, most writers undervalue it. They duplicate content from other articles, sites, etc. It is a recipe for disaster for a website. It ultimately ruins crafted content marketing strategy.
So if you are contemplating embarking on a content marketing strategy, you should be sensitized on the common content marketing mistakes and their implications. In this article, we will delve into how bad writing and plagiarism can ruin your content marketing strategy.
Many content marketers prefer writing a topic that’s trending on the web in order to maintain relevancy. It is a good strategy to seek and maintain relevance to your audience. However, the manner in which you’ll write that topic will bring success or spell doom for your content marketing efforts. Bad writing will consist of telling your audience things that they all already know.
Some writers may think that rephrasing or paraphrasing what other websites have written may do the trick. However, this is not the case as readers will not be drawn to your piece. Your content won’t get as many reads. In the event that someone reads your content, they will be pushed away by your unoriginality. They may even fail to complete reading your piece deeming your work as a total waste of time.
Therefore, it pays to have your perspective on a trending topic as opposed to repeating what others have been saying. It is better to be a pace and trendsetter rather than a follower of trends.
Use your own unique twist to the trending topic. Personalize your work and add endearing features such as:
Make sure that you are conspicuous and outstanding from the rest!
It is another manifestation of bad writing. Headlines set the tone for an entire write-up. Most readers make a judgment of an entire post by just reading the headline. Hence, a good headline may attract people to read your entire post even if the post is generally unattractive. An unappealing headline, on the other hand, will drive away readers, even if you have a good post.
Therefore, if you want success with your content, aspire to have appealing headlines at all times. You won’t want to put so much effort in marketing content that will not get to be read due to poorly crafted headlines.
The secrets to great headlines include:
Using keywords in a free flowing manner – don’t force any keyword to fit in a context
Let it be descriptive
This is one of the big mistakes that content writers make that has adverse effects on a content marketing strategy. When one does not optimize their content for SEO, then they are just courting disaster. The content will not get sufficient traffic. It will rank lowly on virtually all search engines.
The simple remedy to this form of bad writing is the proper optimization of content for SEO. Start by identifying keywords that you would want to rank and use them for the optimization. Carry out extensive research on the subject matter of your content and thereafter embark on competitive targeting. Your aim is to attract traffic and boost your ranking on search engines.
Placing Quantity over Quality
Most content writers find themselves in a dilemma when publishing new content. They have to work within set schedules to produce regular content. In some cases, there is always a rush to publish new content so as to give readers something new to read.
In this rush, content writers find themselves writing just about anything. They may also repeat what they’ve already published, so the reader has nothing new to read. In a bid to reach set word limits, some content writers end up using a lot of filler words in their texts. In essence, they tend to focus on the quantity and volume of their articles at the expense of quality. This practice results in poorly written work that is of low quality and appeal. Writers may not immediately notice this, but readers are swift at noticing. If this happens continuously, the readers completely lose their interest in the articles and may even shun from reading articles from a specific writer owing to their poor writing.
The effects of poor quality articles are rippling as they ruin any effort that is made for content marketing. If the article was promoting a business or product, the readers might develop a negative attitude towards it. Credibility will also be ruined and trust will be broken. The volume of traffic and leads may also dwindle thus proving your content marketing efforts futile. It indeed costs to write poor quality articles.
Therefore, as a content writer, one of the goals that you should have is to write quality articles consistently. Don’t be in a rush to write several articles that are not insightful. Instead of hastily writing a number of articles in, say a week, take your time to craft one that will be worth the effort. You may even cut down on the number of articles that you have to write in a week to ease off the pressure. Writing one article that is of impeccable quality is better than writing several are not up to scale. Subordinate the quantity of your articles to quality. The results will be fulfilling, and your content marketing strategy will prove effective.
The true mark of a refined marketer is the ability to use trends to market their businesses and products. It makes a content marketing strategy have more outreach and appeal to various target audiences. One trend that marketers should leverage on is social media marketing.
Contemporary businesses are quickly embracing social media as part of their content marketing strategy. It has been proven that individuals often look up businesses on social media to know their products and services before they make a formal contact with them. Social media has gained mass appeal across people of various ages. If you don’t post your writing to relevant social media sites, then you are ruining your content marketing strategy. It has been established that many people spend their time on social media. Thus, any content that is shared on social media is readily seen. If you are invisible in social media, the effects could be adverse from losing credibility to confidence amongst your audience.
Another great aspect of social media is the interactive interface that it provides between individuals and businesses. It allows for prompt feedback, and one can get to see the impact of their content on the target audience. Readers are also able to share their sentiments and opinions with regard the content. Hence, you can monitor, measure and evaluate your content impact on the target audience.
Lack of a Niche Audience
Whenever content is written, it should have a niche audience. A common mistake that most content writers make is writing to please all people. For content to spur action, it must be relevant to the readers. However, when the content comes off as irrelevant, it practically becomes useless. It doesn’t matter if you have a good content marketing strategy, a good website, and good SEO. All these are valueless if the content is not directed to a specific niche audience.
Therefore, to remedy this, content writers should always target a specific audience in order to seek relevance. They should offer content that’s personalized to the needs, preferences, and tastes of those who relate to the subject of the content.
Plagiarism and Its Implications
This has come to be one of the greatest atrocities in writing. Plagiarism comes in various forms:
When you pose someone else’s work as your own
When you borrow another person’s work but do not refer to the original source
When you post one of your previous works when you are required to post an entirely new and original one.(Self-plagiarizing)
Plagiarism has increased over the years in terms of frequency and sophistication. It cuts across various fields such as academics, freelance writing and web content. It has been equated to theft in many professional circles, and thus, it should be avoided by all means. Work that has been plagiarized is commonly considered counterfeit.
Plagiarism also goes contrary to prescribed ethical conduct and has adverse effects when one is found culpable. Some circles of content writers may try to rationalize that by copying someone’s work and rearranging the sentence structure cannot be regarded as plagiarism. However, this is purely rationalizing wrongdoing. It is still a form of plagiarism that is referred to as patchwriting.
The implications of plagiarism are adverse. Both you and your content marketing suffer the consequences. For starters, you can be charged in a court of law to answer to copyright infringement. In addition, your content will lose credibility, legitimacy and authenticity.
On your person, it may tarnish your reputation, and you may end up being labeled as a fraud. What’s worse, the internet never forgets. If you are labeled a fraud all over the internet, there is no way you can undo it. It will be a scar that will remain forever ruin your reputation.
Engaging in plagiarism beats the purpose of having a content marketing strategy since you’re acting in contrary with it. You will be pushing prospects and leads away from your content instead of bringing them. Clients who may have once trusted you may lose trust and respect for you and may actually cease being your clients. This brings a set back to your overall business.
Therefore, content marketing should be free of all forms of plagiarism. It’s not wrong to use someone else’s work as a reference point. However, make sure that you acknowledge the work of others and possibly cite or link to their websites.
You can also engage in plagiarism unknowingly. Perhaps you may have used a quote that has been used by someone else or a sentence that was part of someone’s work. In this regard, use a plagiarism checker.
Some popular resources for checking plagiarism include:
These tools will help you find the plagiarized text, show the extent of plagiarism in the content in terms of percentage and also show you the original source of the plagiarized text. Use them and a guide on editing to make corrective measures so as to make your work original and authentic.
It is also advised that when you are in doubt whether you are plagiarizing a certain text, always attribute the author to be safe. If you are required to write new content for marketing purposes, by all means, write a new and original one. Don’t search for old content in your archives and posture it as new original content.
Ignoring the Call to Action
Lastly, leaving out the call to action is another form of bad writing that has adverse effects on content marketing. It is likened to the scenario of a customer walking into a shop with the intention of purchasing something, but then he/she finds no shopkeeper. How will he/she buy something if there is no shopkeeper there? Won’t they leave eventually?
In the same light, no reader will take action if you do not leave a call to action on every piece of content that you post. This is what converts prospects into actual clients.
Bad writing and plagiarism are your worst enemies when it comes to content marketing. They practically ruin every content marketing strategy that you’ve put in place and may lead to the downfall of your business. They render all your content marketing efforts useless.
The various forms of bad writing and plagiarism discussed above are meant to enlighten you as writers and bloggers. Avoid them when creating, promoting and marketing content. Apply the suggested remedies if you have made some of the mistakes mentioned and always check your content to weed out any of these mistakes.
Christina Battons is a blogger and freelancer writer. I am interested in topics about education, writing, blogging, motivation, etc and I also like to share my knowledge with people. Currently, I write for various blogs. My free time I spend with my family, friends, or riding my bicycle. You can find me on Twitter and Facebook.