We know. It seems like there’s SO MUCH room for error. We’re not trying to be Debbie Downers, and we certainly don’t mean to sound bleak. We just want to help you get it right. This post presents you with some tools you can immediately put to work to help you avoid content marketing mistakes and be an even more awesome content marketer in 2018 and beyond!
Avoid basic grammatical errors
A good rule of thumb: proofread your own work. We don’t mean to sound like your high school English teacher, but really, you’re an adult. Get your act together.
If you know you can’t be trusted, share your work with an editor. And, if you can’t afford that, send your work to a trusted friend who will tell you what’s up or wrong, as the case may be.
If you can’t muster either of the above or if you can but still want a backup, download the Grammarly: Free Grammar Checker. Download this, and everything you type on your computer is subject to a speedy grammar and spelling filter. Grammarly highlights misspellings in emails, articles, and social media posts. The best news? It’s free! It even syncs up with your Google Chrome browser for easy installation and immediate integration with everything you type.
Quick & Dirty Tips with Grammar Girl is a strong resource for anyone looking to solve a writing dilemma on the fly. From proper comma and semicolon placement to subjunctive (huh?) verbs and discovering whether or not you should capitalize the word Internet (no, as of June 1, 2016), Grammar Girl’s got your back.
Stop doing everything yourself
Of course, you’re brilliant. You know it, and so do we. But that doesn’t mean you need to do everything yourself. In fact, people with different perspectives and experiences in varied industries may just have a more interesting angle than even you do.
What if, instead of coming up with all the ideas and doing all the writing yourself, seasoned and talented writers wrote pitches for you? Good news, this is what nDash does. Explore the options given. Request pitches. Let good writers do the work for you so you can focus on managing your overall content marketing strategy.
Our suggestion is to consider the benefits of hiring freelance writers to avoid feeling overwhelmed and produce a stronger output.
Automate idea curation
Of course, asking for pitches is super helpful, but there are even more options for idea curation. It’s always helpful to see what your audience is reading and what your competition is up to. One way to do this is to check out Feedly, a freemium online service that collects daily the most popular articles and blog posts about whatever topic you choose. Here’s what today’s free Feedly view looks like for “content marketing.”
Buzzsumo comes with a bit of a steep price tag, but you can perform a set number of free searches a day. Buzzsumo is pretty awesome in that it tallies the most shared content assets on a daily basis. Here’s a shot from today’s “content marketing” search.
Quickly discover what content topics, headlines, and social media channels resonate most strongly with a larger audience as you work to determine what works best for you.
Borrow from the best
The Content Marketing Institute is dedicated to all things content marketing. Bonus: hit up their toolkit to find templates and guides on everything from storytelling to KPIs and content calendar creation.
With resources readily available from the likes of experts at the Content Marketing Institute, the nDash blog, and content marketing rockstars like Ann Handley and Jeff Bullas, you can’t go wrong. Never fear to emulate best-in-class practices to inform your own killer strategy.
It’s okay to make mistakes
While this post and series are designed to help you avoid making content marketing mistakes, know that it’s inevitable. This is a long game, and to be successful, a great deal of testing and learning must take place. There are no cut-and-dry answers. Content marketing is a nuanced business subject to ripple effects from current events, audience trends, and new technologies.
So, we’re here to let you know it’s completely okay to mess up from time to time. We just hope these articles help you find a few shortcuts to shorten your journey to success.
Good luck! And please, keep us posted with questions and success along the way.
Editor’s note: This post is by nDash community member Melanie LoBue. Melanie is a freelance writer, editor, and digital marketing consultant living in Boston who also works full-time as Director of Digital Content Marketing for a global tech company. With over 20 years of professional creative experience, Melanie focuses on helping businesses grow using the power of words. To learn more about Melanie, or to have her write for your brand, check out her nDash profile page.
You can read part 1 here: https://www.ndash.com/blog/content-marketing-mistakes-avoid-2018
…and part 2 here: https://www.ndash.com/blog/content-marketing-mistakes-avoid-2018-part-2