The fields of digital marketing and creativity therein are both subject to a lot of critical thought and writing, which often focus on some key ideas that are presented as universal, unbendable truths that must be blindly followed to ensure success or marketing doom will follow! If only life were so simple. The secret to successful creative marketing and content creation is not so easily unlocked and it is vital that you do not limit your scope before you start by believing some of the false declarations that are rife and spread like digital wildfire in the online community.
Myth 1 – You must always go with the trending topics
Whilst it pays to keep abreast of what’s hot in your particular field or industry it is absolutely NOT always wise to jump on the latest trending topic and follow everything sheep-like at the expense of your own creative ideas and innovative blog articles. Stifling creativity to ensure homogeneity with the pack is one sure-fire way to ensure perpetual mediocrity. Trends are called thus because they are ephemeral; they crash into our consciousness with the speed and grace of a raging bull and leave stealthily, like a ninja slinking out of a window in the dead of night. If you invest too heavily in such willow-the-wisp constructs you will be constantly chasing after your tails. Make sure that your marketing subjects always fall in line with your company’s identity, message and values. Set individually tailored goals for your content that drive your brand awareness and target lead creation as well as answering the problems and concerns of your customers. Of course, if you can add some relevant humour, perhaps relating to current affairs, to your articles this will help boost their ‘shareability’ value.
Myth 2 – Bounce rate increase is a disaster
It is one of the de rigueur topics of recent months in the digital marketing world, but is an increased bounce rate on your website really cause for such alarm? Well, not always, as it happens. If you are putting things into place in your online marketing strategy to boost the traffic to your website, then it is only natural to see an increase in bounce rate. This should not be interpreted as a wholly negative thing – instead it is a sign that you should take a detailed look at what your visitors are up to once they arrive on your page. Which pages do they visit and for how long? In addition, a high bounce rate can also be characteristic of certain industries and certain types of website, while if your site mentions key partners from different sectors, you may see lots of visitors to your site who realize it is not relevant to them and this will, of course influence your overall bounce rate.
Myth 3 – Content is king
The amount of articles I have read that simply throw this old chestnut out there as if it is the answer in and of itself to a successful content marketing strategy is unbelievable. The insinuation is that your site needs to be crammed full of relevant content on a regular basis and that will serve to drive traffic, leads and your company to riches. Again, if only things were this simple! Once your content has been written and uploaded you absolutely must develop a sophisticated and regular plan to promote it. Around ten years ago you could get away with key-word stuffed SEO-driven content and the rest would take care of itself, but with more sophisticated search engines and parameters for ranking you need content that works for readers not just algorithms. And furthermore you need that content to be shared and re-shared, liked, loved, re-tweeted and hosted on other sites. In other words it must be promoted. You need multiple points of contact and ones that reach the right readers.
Myth 4 – Data and creativity are poor bedfellows
It is a common misconception that creativity and data mix like oil and water, but just like that old myth at school that you were either good at arts or maths (mathematics has been shown to be a creative subject and often great mathematicians are great musicians) it is a fallacy. The idea that a creative team or individual cannot excel in marketing creative and data-based content. It is a big problem for marketers to overcome this ingrained belief that tapping into data-fuelled research and content will somehow hamper their creative instincts. The evidence for this just simply isn’t there. If as a company owner or manager you expect your marketers to sit back and wait for the creative juices to flow you could end up with a directionless strategy that fails to achieve what your company actually needs.
John Hinds writes for Lojix who are a digital marketing agency based in Barnsley. He likes to travel, loves listening to music and enjoys playing tennis.