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Content marketing is supposed to be smooth sailing, without any bumps along the way, right? Despite expectations, it’s pretty likely that you’ve encountered at least one or two common content marketing challenges. Content marketing challenges and problems can be annoying, and can seriously derail your marketing efforts. But they don’t have to stand in your way.

Research from the Content Marketing Institute shows that more and more brands are experiencing content marketing success. Almost 28 percent of B2C brands rate their efforts as very successful and 50 percent rating their efforts as moderately successful.

Enjoying success with content marketing means knowing how to recognize common content marketing challenges, and what to do to overcome them.

Content Marketing Challenge:

Limited Time for Content Marketing

According to Hubspot, a lack of time is one of the biggest content marketing challenges brands face. Unless you have a team that’s 100 percent dedicated to content marketing, and eats, sleeps, and breathes content, you’re going to struggle to find the time to put into developing a content marketing strategy and creating content.

Content Marketing Solution

Since you can’t create hours in the day, one simple solution for a lack of time for content marketing is to outsource some or even all aspects of your brand’s marketing. Outsourcing is a lot more common than you might think — 62 percent of B2C brands outsource at least one part of their content marketing.

You can outsource any of the following content marketing components to freelancers or an agency:

  • Content creation
  • Strategy and planning
  • Distribution and promotion of content
  • Measuring content marketing results

Content Marketing Challenge:

Maintaining Content Quality

Even if your brand has the time to devote to content marketing, it might struggle to maintain content quality or to produce fresh, interesting content on a regular basis. According to E-consultancy, producing quality, fresh content was one of the biggest content marketing challenges cited by marketers.

When you feel the need to consistently produce content, keeping that content excellent can become quite a challenge. How can you avoid falling into the trap of churning out subpar blog posts, videos, and so on?

Content Marketing Solution

There are a few solutions to the challenge of creating quality content. One solution is to look to new sources for ideas. Your brand’s audience or customers can be a great resource to use when you’re stuck for fresh ideas. Ask them what type of content they want to see, or what challenges they are facing in their lives.

Another solution is to put the focus on quality over quantity. You might have heard that you need to produce a certain number of blog posts per day, or that you need to update your videos weekly. The reality is that it’s better to produce fewer content pieces that are of stellar quality than it is to produce more content that doesn’t really serve anyone.

Content Marketing Challenge:

Creating Content That Serves the Audience

Content marketing isn’t about pushing your brand’s products or services on an audience. But, as E-consultancy notes, some of the most common content marketing challenges include overlooking the goal of content is to be super promotional.

The reality is that few people want to read or look at content that’s just an extended commercial for a product. Instead, they want content that solves a problem they’re experiencing. If you’re feeling pressure from the “higher ups” at your brand to create promotional content, it can be difficult to produce blog posts, videos, and the like that really meet the needs of your audience.

Content Marketing Solution

The proof is in the pudding. If you’re getting told to create promotional versus audience-serving content, show your bosses the stats that back you up. Often, useful, helpful content is the content that gets the most shares, likes, and traffic.

Content Marketing Challenge:

No One’s Looking at Your Content

If your brand publishes a blog post, produces an ebook, or creates a video and no one looks at it, did you really create a piece of content? The world is a busy place, full of lots of content. It can be a challenge for your content (whatever form it might take) to grab the attention of readers or viewers.

There are a few reasons why people might ignore the content you create. First, you could be producing low-quality stuff. Second, you might not be promoting your content through the right channels. If no one knows that you’ve written the blog post of the century, they’re not going to read it.

Content Marketing Solution

Overcoming a lack of audience often involves a multi-pronged approach. First, zero in on the quality of your content. Is it interesting, and does it provide value to the audience? Is it quality content or does it have spelling mistakes and awkward sentences? Or, in the case of video, is it blurry or hard to hear?

Next, look at how you’re distributing your content. Are you pushing it out through social media? Do you promote it through an email newsletter? Have you thought about using influencers to share and promote the content your brand creates?

Harvard Business Review notes that it’s important to optimize your content for mobile devices and for search. Are you using search engine optimization (SEO), and if so, have you incorporated it into your content creation strategy, rather than it being an afterthought? These days, optimizing your content for mobile devices goes hand in hand with SEO. The more screens your content is viewable on, the more likely it is to rank high on Google and other search engine results pages.

Content Marketing Challenge:

Your Content Marketing Seems to Be Going Nowhere, Fast

Around 50 percent of B2C content marketers in North America struggle to measure their content’s effectiveness. If you have no idea what your content marketing is doing or whether it’s producing the results you hoped for, you have no way of proving to the world (or your bosses) that content marketing is valuable for your brand.

Content Marketing Solution

The first step is to figure out what you want your content to accomplish. Set a goal for your content marketing, then determine the key performance indicators (KPIs) that will help you track that goal.

For example, if you might want to increase traffic to your website. Thus, a KPI could be the number of hits your site gets from a piece a content. For a goal to increase leads, track the number of email sign-ups you get from a specific piece of content.

Hope for a smooth and easy experience with content marketing. But you should also prepare to face challenges along the way. Knowing how to respond to specific challenges is key for content marketing success for your brand.