Web content marketing disillusionment is a real thing. It’s that moment where you’ve had enough with the parade of funnels, blogs and ideas that come fluttering across the patio on a breeze of lacklustre enthusiasm. It’s that sense of therapy not working for you, yet everyone seems to play from the same book.
You can reach and grab for the inspiring people and their inspiring works. And then, down it boils. More endlessly aching stuff that everyone says. More stuff that doesn’t feel right for you. Tired techniques, cliched offerings and hackneyed ideas abound.
Why is that?
Let’s look at web content marketing disillusionment and how it impacts your small business
The magic box of marketing formula
There’s a reason why marketing courses for small business sell out- it’s because there’s a real issue here when people attempt to market their wares. You might be good at what you do, but that doesn’t mean you can translate it into a workable marketing strategy.
Marketers know how to market their course to you. They know how to play on your marketing disillusionment. Chances are, they’ve been through it themselves. Some may even argue the reason why they market marketing is because their marketing in other areas wasn’t as sound.
Whatever the case, web content marketing formulas often don’t work. They give you an initial burst and bump of enthusiasm. They remind you of all the things you should be doing, that you’ve been told ten times before. They highlight the foundations and processes you can do to get somewhere with the marketing.
But they don’t address the fundamental issues you have with marketing.
What are these fundamental problems with web content marketing?
The majority of people I speak to who are struggling with their marketing are keenly aware of how vulgar, plastic and disingenuous marketing is. Or can be. It doesn’t have to be that way.
When someone is leading you to the marketing water to drink, they are using things like SEO, sales funnels, lead captures, web content marketing, special offers, social media and a lot of stuff that looks all the bloody same.
The issue isn’t the mechanics. Think of that as the steps to the building.
It’s how the building is decorated that you have the issue with.
The truth as to why so many freelancers, small business owners and start-up founders have difficulty communicating their marketing is that it relies on you being something you are not. Marketing teachers and marketing coaches often pull from the same playbook. That is, the playbook that works for them.
They can stand up and be counted. They can stand up and say all manner of things about themselves to get attention. They don’t shy away from a selfie. They are fine with creating a video and claiming a position of authority. If a customer doesn’t like the marketing patter, it’s their loss.
The problem with following along with the usual standard web content marketing ideas are:
- It forgets to consider how you build business relationships. They speed is determined by the mechanics and the financial pressure, not how you prefer to do business
- It often doesn’t sound like you. If you talked to someone earnestly about your product, would you really give an introduction spiel, list a bunch of feature benefits and start reciting testimonials before putting the pressure on? Chances are, you’d do it a different way. One that focuses on how much you like helping and the buzz you get from seeing the product in the wild
- There’s no style to it. As much as customers enjoy the familiar, we also want to be intrigued and interested as well. If you cannot stand apart from the rest, it’s boring
- There’s no strategy. To make use of web content marketing effectively, you need to know what you want your outcomes to look like and how you want to achieve them
In the hurry to get the baseline right, most marketers don’t tell you that there has to be something in it for the customer. They have to feel valued, included and attracted to the process. No amount of well-worn techniques will bring that to fruition if your confidence is lacking.
Confidence saves the day
Part of the reason why a lot of small business owners feel queasy about marketing themselves is the mechanics overshadow the intent.
We also like to hide a little bit when we market something because it means we don’t have to deal with the rejection directly.
If you own your small business, you often tie self-worth to it.
It’s a lot easier to say, “I work in web content marketing” and remain detached than it is to say, “I help people get comfortable with content marketing techniques.”
We can deflect because it’s not personal.
It’s also a lot easier to do whatever you need to in order to get that sale if you are not being vulnerable. If the marketing fails, it’s not us or our small business. We have something to blame.
The more space there is between your identity and your work, the more you are protected after all.
Yet, most of us are inspired by what we do because we want to help people. We believe in what we make, what we produce and what we sell. Using something you’d like to help people with to trick them into liking it in the first instance doesn’t seem natural.
It also tends to backfire. The marketing story and the product don’t match, which in turn increases the chance of marketing disillusionment. It makes a hell of a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The problem is your confidence. And it might not be the confidence you have in your product or even yourself.
You have to find a way to trust in yourself and your product on a deeper level. Then translate it to an audience of more than one. You have to understand that while marketing has been used and abused, yours doesn’t have to be.
How do you break through web content marketing disillusionment?
The first step on conquering your web content marketing disillusionment is finding out the root of the problem. You might have tried a lot of things and found it never works. Maybe you spent a lot of money on advertising, campaigns and advice that didn’t pay off. Or that felt they didn’t suit you, so you never used them again.
Perhaps the issue is you hold your small business so close to your heart that you tend to jump in and control the narrative the minute you engage someone. Maybe you are the person who snickers at other campaigns on a regular basis and doesn’t want the same for you. It could be a sincere distrust of sales, sales people and the manipulation often found within.
It could simply be that it feels so alien. Or like another thing on your plate you can’t deal with. Nobody wants to spend time doing something that costs time and money where they feel the least competent either.
Whatever the case, you have to recognise one fundamental truth:
The more you tell your story, the more you’ll get better at telling it.
Sounds simple, right? It’s because it is. The more you practise pitching your small business on the phone or at lunch, the better and more natural it becomes. The more you write about your business, the more succinct you get. The more you play on social media, the more you begin to connect with community.
If you sit on your hands and let fear drive your marketing, you never get the opportunity to learn by doing. You also don’t get to finesse your message.
An effective small business, freelancer or start-up doesn’t wait for the perfect message they can use forever and a day to come screaming down the pike.
It simply gets the information out there, learns from the response, incorporates the learning and keeps going.
Want to break through your web content marketing disillusionment? Hire me as your business coach or let me whip up a marketing strategy plan for you.
- How do you pick the right small business coach for you?
- Don’t get caught up in business perfectionism. Get it done!
- The anatomy of poor communication between client and freelancer
- How working with the right content writers make all the difference
- What the people engaged in internet shame really want
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