Nearly every entrepreneur and marketer has been in the same boat at one point or another—asking questions rooted in that dreaded emotion: fear. Will anyone care what I have to say? Are my ideas good enough? How am I going to stand out in an already overcrowded market? What if people react negatively? What if I fail?
There’s no doubt about it; fear will cripple your ability to be a great marketer if you let it. It will slowly rob you of your confidence and courage, leaving behind someone who would readily give up hope of building a viable business to sit on the sidelines and watch others claim the glory of their great ideas.
If you’re ready to stop talking yourself out of doing things that could potentially expand your business and elevate the position of your brand, then join us as we explore some common content marketing fears.
Will People Notice My Brand?
Attracting new prospects, building awareness, enhancing brand image, and boosting customer engagement are some of the biggest draws of content marketing. However, you may feel like a small fish in a big pond just thinking about the sheer size of the Internet community and the number of competitors already operating in your industry.
Will people interact with your blog, like and share your social media content, or download your whitepaper in exchange for an email address?
First, it’s crucial to understand that content marketing doesn’t diminish the importance of in-person interactions for not only building meaningful relationships, but also building a team of brand advocates who naturally share your content because they think you’re great. Second, there is room for everyone on the Internet—even in seemingly overcrowded segments. It’s your USP that’s going to make a difference. Third, it can take time to build an audience, even with a rock solid strategy that follows all best practices to a T.
With that said, if you’re worried you’ll remain invisible when you haven’t yet raised your virtual voice, you’re sabotaging your success before you’ve even begun.
What If I Make A Horrible Mistake?
What, like some of these guys?
Often, it’s the fear of consequences that stop us from going for what we want. The good thing is you’re thinking about consequences. It’s the ill-worded or ill-timed Tweet, the poorly thought-out newsjacking, or misguided content ideas that get your fellow marketers into trouble. Pay attention to what you’re making available for public consumption before you hit the publish button, but also realize you’re human. You won’t be the first person to make a mistake, and you certainly won’t be the last. It’s content marketing, not skydiving.
Do I Really Know What I’m Doing?
Fears around building a content marketing strategy and measuring ROI usually stem from a lack of knowledge and indecision. A lack of knowledge can easily be remedied, but when it comes to indecision, you need to keep in mind that your strategy is living, not static.
Sure, creating an actual document forces you to commit to an approach, but it’s something that’s continually adapted based on your content marketing KPIs and results. If things aren’t working, re-evaluate. Your confidence in what you’re doing will develop as you inch closer to your goals.
What If My Ideas Aren’t Unique Or Good Enough?
With so much content already online, the reality is you’re bound to say or do something someone else has already said and done. The important thing to remember is you’re creating a user experience unique to your audience. You’re adding your own flavor, sharing your special talents, and bringing a fresh perspective to the table. Even though it’s intimidating when competitors have been doing a great job for so long, don’t underestimate your ability to provide exactly what your target audience needs when they need it.
My Content Might Not Be Perfect
From major fears such as failing to create an authentic voice to minor fears such as typos, content marketers can work themselves up over problems that often have simple solutions. In many cases, outsourcing to professional writers, copywriters, designers, and editors can instantly improve the quality of content assets.
In other instances, it’s as simple as focusing on the right aspects. Instead of asking, “Is this funny enough? Clever enough? Engaging enough? Attractive enough?” Ask yourself, “Is this effective?” If the right people see your content and they’re taking action, there’s nothing to fear.
Perhaps Shakespeare said it best:
“Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.”
What are your greatest doubts and fears? What are you doing to push past them? We’d love to hear your take on this so contribute your thoughts to the conversation below.
Shawn Manaher is the founder and CEO of The Content Authority. He’s one part content manager, one part writing ninja organizer, and two parts leader of top content creators. You don’t even want to know what he calls pancakes.