In a relatively few years, content marketing has grown into a major strategy for all kinds of businesses. According to CMI’s latest numbers, 76% of B2C and 88% of B2B marketers do content marketing.

But doing it isn’t the same as doing it well.

And the evidence suggests that most marketers aren’t: only 38% of B2C and 30% of B2B marketers say their content campaigns are effective.

I think there’s an underlying reason why so many content campaigns fail:

It’s a problem of investment.

You Don’t Invest in Your Team

The fact that B2B marketers only allocated an average of 28% of their marketing budgets to content marketing last year shows that people are hesitant to invest in the strategy.

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Yet many digital marketers are surprised that so many campaigns fail.

The fact is, the less money you invest in content marketing, the more difficult it is to succeed. If you’re only paying your blog writer three cents a word, you can bet your content will be less effective than posts written by a well-paid expert writer in your niche.

That’s just one example, but the data backs it up. CMI found a correlation between budget and effectiveness for B2B marketers: those who allocate 42% of their budgets are the most effective.

If content marketing is a relatively small part of your budget, make the case for allocating more funds – otherwise what you do invest could go to waste.

You Don’t Invest in Quality as Well as Quantity

Many marketers have taken the advice that “content is king” very seriously. Hubspot’s research found that 71% of marketers upped their content creation last year.

As a result, content creation has become a big problem for brands: 55% say content quality is a huge concern, while 58% are worried about content frequency.

And according to BuzzSumo, it’s long-form content that gets more shares and links – yet more than 85% of content pieces are less than 1,000 words.

This isn’t surprising, considering how preoccupied marketers are with creating more content. In an effort to do so, they’re making it shorter, sacrificing quality for quantity, and seeing bad results.

Making more content can be a useful strategy for some brands, but don’t let it affect how much you invest into each piece. An easy way to get the best of both worlds is by hiring more quality writers to keep up with your content needs.

You Don’t Invest in Paid Social Promotion

Social media platforms are free to use for marketing purposes, but all posts are not created equal. BuzzSumo found that 50% of all articles get 11 or fewer Twitter shares, 1 or fewer Google+ shares, and no LinkedIn or Pinterest engagement.

Meanwhile, the most popular platform, Facebook, has seen steadily decreasing organic engagement:

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The reason?

They’re favoring paid promotion.

And this is a point most content marketers aren’t picking up on. According to Hubspot:

  • 50% are not using using Twitter ads
  • 48% are not using LinkedIn ads
  • 38% are not using Facebook ads
  • 49% are not using Google Remarketing

Social media engagement isn’t free anymore. The time has come for marketers to pony up for paid social promotion – or be content without that engagement.

You Don’t Invest in Your Strategy

Lack of team members, quality content, and paid social promotion are most often issues of budget, but money isn’t the only way you can fail to invest in your campaigns.

Not taking the time to plan a content marketing strategy is another factor causing many campaigns to fail. Sixty-eight percent of content marketers rate their strategy as “basic” or “inconsistent,” while a surprisingly low number of B2B marketers actually have a documented strategy at all.

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What might not surprise you is that the majority of the most effective content marketers do have a documented strategy, and 40% of the least effective do not.

You can’t just hit the ground running with your content campaigns and expect them to succeed. Instead, take the time to create a documented content marketing strategy and set your campaigns up for success.

You Don’t Invest in Improving Your Campaigns

Even if you have the biggest content marketing budget of any business in your niche, if you don’t follow up and make adjustments, the strategy will never be scalable.

CMI found that the most effective B2B content marketers connect with their teams daily or weekly to discuss their campaigns. In addition, marketers who check their metrics at least three times a week are 20% more likely to get a positive ROI.

If your content campaigns always fail, you should: make more time in your schedule to analyze their effectiveness; make strategy adjustments based on the analyses; and communicate those adjustments with your team members.

Know of any other ways marketers fail to invest in their content campaigns? Comment below:

Images: Content Marketing Institute, Locowise, Content Marketing Institute