4 Ways Going Cheap in Content Marketing Will Burn You

I get it. You don’t have a lot of money to spend frivolously on marketing, or you’re skeptical that content marketing will bear the results everybody claims it will. Either way, you want to play it safe and spend as little as possible on your content marketing campaign.

In theory, this is a good idea; you don’t know how well content marketing is going to work for you, and every dollar you spend on it is another dollar you can spend on infrastructure, employees, or other necessary business expenses.

But here’s the thing: getting cheap on content marketing is almost always going to burn you. Here’s how:

  1. You’ll get lousy content. First up, you get what you pay for when it comes to content. It’s true that you can find people willing to pop out an onsite article for $10, but don’t expect that article to be worth reading. If you want in-depth, thoughtful content with original topics, rich details, and a unique voice, you’re going to have to up your budget. You don’t need to invest in rock star online writers, but you do need to have some minimum standards for content quality. Otherwise, you’ll never be able to build a reputation.
  2. You won’t value the strategy. Psychologically, people tend to value things they spend money on; it’s why paying for a gym membership is likely to encourage you to exercise, more so than relying on free methods that might currently be available to you. Investing as little as possible in content marketing will force you to de-prioritize it as a strategy, which means you won’t give it your full attention or resources. No content strategy can thrive under these conditions.
  3. You’ll work with flakes and amateurs. Cheaper workers and agencies tend to be less pleasant to work with; this isn’t always the case, but it’s the general rule. Amateurs won’t know what they’re doing, and may end up damaging your reputation more than they build it. Flakes won’t attend your meetings on time, or won’t be organized enough to execute on your work. You may also be forced to deal with questionable customer service, or unreliable communication.
  4. You won’t gain momentum. Spending less means you’ll be working with fewer posts, fewer resources, and almost no opportunities to scale. That means it’s going to be nearly impossible for you to grow a campaign. Posting once a week and doing nothing else will make your campaign and reputation grow at a glacial pace, which on paper, won’t be much better than doing nothing.

To clarify, the problem here isn’t with trying to find the best deal, or being conservative with your investments. Instead, it’s the tendency to pursue content marketing with the least amount of spending possible. It’s better to spend a lot of money and see a respectable return than it is to spend a little and lose it all, so reconsider your budget and make sure you have all your fundamentals covered. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a negative impression of content marketing—and an unfounded one at that.

If you need help planning a frugal—but effective—content marketing campaign, contact me! I’ll work with you one-on-one to put the right plan for your business in action.


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