Content marketing is the idea that your brand content (blog posts, social media, videos, or emails) implicitly does your marketing for you. Compare this to traditional, explicit marketing, like purchasing a tv ad or putting ‘buy now’ over a product.

Content marketing has surged to the front of our marketing approaches in the digital age, as more and more people get online to share their expertise and passions with others. Done correctly, content marketing is a way of providing your audience with free value while leading them to desire your paid products.

Done incorrectly, and content marketing is merely a bad sales pitch that people can spot a mile away. So let’s talk about why content marketing isn’t working for you, and what you can do about it.

You Don’t Share Content Regularly

Content marketing relies on the regular creation of content. That means you need to create a content schedule that you can stick to, and make sure that it gets out on time each week. Posting once a month to your blog, on a different day each month, isn’t going to work. There are too many other people out there to distract your readers with their content.

Take two hours and brainstorm a month’s worth of blog posts, social media posts, and what your sales strategy with them will be. You don’t have to post on every platform every day to have the most impact! But you should be hitting your chosen platforms regularly (1-3x a week) so that your audience knows they can depend on you.

You’re Using Sales Language

Making a sale today is very different from how Don Draper made a sale. Or even how Pepsi made a sale in the 90’s. Today, people don’t want to be sold to. People are more interested in getting to know the people and companies they buy from and feeling a connection with them.

Yes, people still want a solution to their problem. That will always sell. But beyond that, they want to know that the person they’re buying from is someone they feel like they truly know, and you build that kind of relationship by using regular words, not sales pitches.

This is why the rise of the influencer has been so great– influencers share themselves with their audiences, and so their audiences trust them. Don’t put traditional sales language in your content marketing. Instead, focus on sharing yourself and your knowledge.

If content marketing isn’t working for you, go back and review what you’re doing. What is your content really DOING, SAYING, and how is it COMING ACROSS? If there’s no clear theme, it’s too sales-y, or it’s simply not there on time each week, you might have found the answer you’re looking for.