What Not to Do in Your Content Marketing: 4 Things that Turn Off Your Audience

What Not to Do in Your Content Marketing: 4 Things that Turn Your Audience Off, Big-time

by | Aug 9, 2017 | Content Marketing

As a good marketer, you know by now that not all content marketing tactics are effective.

Take that a step further…

Did you know that some very specific so-called content marketing techniques can flip the switch for your audience – turning them off instead of flipping them onto you and your brand?

You could be driving away customers without knowing it.

[insert audible groans for added effect]

Things like content fatigue, selling too much, and focusing on you versus the buyer are all problems.

The good news?

If you’re guilty of these sins, you can nip them in the bud.

And if you do that, you’ll see more interest in your content and fewer crickets chirping. That equals more ROI, which is always what we’re striving for at the end of the day.

However, the problem with content marketing mistakes? They’re too easy to make. So, how do you avoid them? What should you do instead? Stick with me and I’ll share it all.

don't do this what not to do in your content marketing

What Not to Do In Your Content Marketing: Avoid These 4 Rookie Mistakes & Keep Your Audience Interested

These mistakes are notorious for making readers’ eyes glaze over. They’ll not only get bored – they may even get irritated with you.


If you want to engage your audience and make them trust you, do not, under any circumstances, commit these four errors.

1. Selling, Selling, Selling

Of course you want to pad your bottom line. Your business is your living – if you’re not making money, you don’t have a business at all.

The problems start popping up when you forget the main definition of content marketing. It’s customer-oriented, not sales-oriented.

The reason content marketing works in the first place is that we focus on providing value to the audience. It means the content is natural and useful. The sales come as a result of the relationships you build and the authority you establish, not the other way around.

If you try to sell first and foremost, your audience will see right through it.

Nobody trusts a salesman, and trust is the number one thing you’re trying to build with content.


Don’t be like this guy.

Bottom line: If you focus on selling first, you’re not engaging in the prescribed, proven content marketing formula. As such, you won’t see the returns or stable, long-term success.

2. Being Self-Focused vs. Customer-Focused

It’s great to hone your business goals and measure your success, but it’s not-so-great to foster the same self-interest in your content.

Content that caters to your interests as a business owner will more than likely fail to hit the bullseye for your audience.

Why? Think about it: Your audience has wants and needs that differ from yours.

That’s why they’re your audience, not your competitors or peers. They’re in their own class. Treat them as such when you’re offering content.

You need to write for them. Don’t do the opposite – don’t write what interests you and try to find an audience as an afterthought. Your customers need to be in your mind from the very beginning.

Or, as Forbes puts it, “The right content for the wrong person might as well be the wrong content.”

3. Believing That More Is More

Maybe you know how to write for your audience. Maybe you understand them to some degree. Despite this, you may be committing another content sin: Inundating your readers with content.

This scenario usually looks the same. You think more content equals more exposure. You believe if you post tons of content, you’ll hook more people through the various lures you’re tossing into the Google waters. You think you’ll build your authority more quickly and attain your goals faster.

No. Nope. Not a chance.

OptinMonster says that a flood of content will work initially, but not over time. You’ll get some traffic, but only at first. When people read your mediocre posts and see that you have hordes of them, you just won’t resonate. They’ll leave your site, and they won’t return.

Instead, it’s better to have regular, quality posts. Keep your blog updated, but don’t overdo it. A small, but steadily, growing cache of superb content is far better than an encyclopedia of average or below-average posts.


Image via Scoop.it

Plus, if you’re posting three or four times a day and bombarding people’s feeds, they’ll just get annoyed.

Annoying people is the last thing you want to do. Period.

4. Going Overboard with SEO

There’s something else that can annoy, frustrate, and turn off your readers.

It’s bad SEO.

What does bad SEO look like? You can spot it from a mile away. It reads terribly, like a machine wrote your post and not a human. It’s spammy and underhanded. You’re trying to get ahead the wrong way, and it’s obvious.

The two main culprits here are keyword stuffing and link stuffing.

Keyword stuffing happens when you jam in as many keywords as possible in your copy, thinking you’ll boost your ranking. Instead, you’re creating content that’s a headache to read and isn’t useful at all.

Here’s an example of keyword stuffing using the term “dog food”:

Always buy dog food made from high-quality ingredients. Dog food can be more expensive if you buy dog food that’s pricier, but your dog will be healthier with better dog food.

Link stuffing is similarly spammy and unnatural-looking. This is where you link to as many different websites as possible to build your clout. The problem is, it’s transparent what you’re trying to do, and it looks strange. Example:

Always buy dog food made from high-quality ingredients. Dog food can be more expensive if you buy dog food that’s pricier, but your dog will be healthier with better dog food.

If you overdo SEO, you are being underhanded. You’re ignoring quality and readability in favor of getting more traffic.

Or so you think. In reality, Google will dock you for excessive linking and keyword stuffing. That’s definitely an outcome you don’t want.


Image via Content Marketing Institute

Be Real, Authentic, Trustworthy, and Audience-Focused in Your Content Marketing

Want to avoid all these mistakes? Want an easy solution?

Focus on your audience.

Focus on authenticity.

Genuinely desire a relationship with your readers and your customers. Build that relationship.

This is how you appeal to the masses and let content marketing work for you, not against you.

[/cue epic end music & happy crowd cheers]

happy crowd


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