Tell It Like It Is: Embracing a Positive Marketing Strategy Will Not Work for Your Content
Positive content marketing straddles a thin line between fact and fiction – especially for those desperately searching for shortcuts to generate buzz and stay in a positive light within their respective markets. Positive marketing will not give you the long-term exposure, traffic and overall success that you desire for your content. Committing your brand and message to an overly positive content marketing strategy can quickly backfire on you – putting you at risk of losing much more than you would ever stand to gain from it.
Excessive Positivity Creates Red Flags with Consumers
Think about the last infomercial you saw or sales pitch that you heard. If you paid attention to it, chances are that you listened closely for any “red flags” that you would have classified as automatic deal-breakers. It is almost as if the average consumer reaches for the remote control whenever a “too good to be true” alarm goes off enough times.
The same principle applies to your brand if you embrace an overly positive content marketing strategy. It is nearly impossible to satisfy every customer and the chances of flawless business practices are just as slim. Your target audience always expects honesty and integrity from your brand – especially when it comes to the content that you publish, post and promote to them. Striving to shine a positive light on your content to hide something (anything) will create red flags and warning signs that will be much harder to eliminate than you think.
Excessive Wordiness Creates a Sugarcoated Illusion
You can easily turn a simple statement into a lengthy essay or article with a little help from excessive wordiness. Quality content creators and marketers are advised to avoid “fluff” for effective SEO purposes. However, this type of wordiness can also be used to create the sugarcoated illusion of flawlessness.
You may have already seen this done with other content or even social media posts and comments. Instead of addressing a specific issue directly with clear and concise language, they essentially try to walk around the topic – “beating around the bush” – with the hope of allowing the truth to slip through the cracks.
When creating and promoting content, you must remember that the truth always outruns positive fluff. Illusions have cracks and gaps that are easily exposed and can considerable damage to a brand’s reputation. It may seem as if positive content marketing allows you to shift the focal point to the good instead of the bad and/or ugly. However, once what is hidden “behind the curtain” is finally revealed, you may unfortunately realize that the damage done to your brand is irreparable.
Honesty and Truth Can Boost Authenticity and Transparency
Your target audience members know that neither you nor your brand is perfect. As a result, they do not realistically expect perfection from your brand. Whether it is the content that you promote or the services that you provide, most consumers will expect there to be some flaws or deficiencies. It may seem like this would automatically cause prospective customers and clients to run towards your competitors without delay. On the contrary, being honest about the flaws and finding an effective way to embrace the negativity could boost your brand’s authenticity in the eyes of your customers.
Positive content marketing strives to ignore the holes and redirect the customer’s undivided attention to the good parts. Studies have shown that consumers enjoy companies and brands that are fully transparent with them – especially when it comes to their content. By strategically embracing the negative flaws and deficiencies within your content marketing strategy, you can make your brand more appealing and attractive to new clientele. You could potentially gain the customers and online traffic that your competitors are losing simply from a lack of transparency in this regard.
Search for, Recognize and Respond to Honest Feedback
Another aspect of your positive content marketing is the concealment of negative feedback from customers and the highlighting of positive feedback. This is frequently noticed on social media where brands are able to hide or even delete negative comments easily and comment, boost and even re-post the positive feedback.
This is another trap of positive content marketing that can damage your reputation and cause your integrity to plummet. Consumer engagement is a cornerstone of any successful online presence – from websites and blogs to social media pages and forum websites. When you are trying to dictate the conversation between your brand and consumers, you are stunting the effectiveness and jeopardizing the success of your content marketing plan.
Instead of hiding from negative feedback by trying to control consumer conversations, you should encourage and recognize all forms of honest feedback. Keep in mind that any type of feedback means that your readers and viewers care enough about your brand to express themselves. The last thing you want is to remove honest and open communication from the equation. It is honest feedback that can help you to identify key areas of improvement that will enhance the quality of your content and overall brand. The bottom line is that if your consumers feel that they cannot be honest with you, they will just find one of your competitors that will appreciate their honesty (and their business) more than you.
The Name of the Game is Respect
Regardless of what you decide to do with your content marketing strategy, make sure you always maintain respect. First and foremost, you want to make sure that your customers feel respected. Positive content marketing that creates a dishonest illusion of flawlessness makes it nearly impossible for consumers to feel respected. Once again, you must remember the “too good to be true” red flags that are usually overflowing within shady sales pitches and infomercials. Respect and integrity will allow you and your brand to stay on the appropriate side of the integrity fence within your target market.
In addition to showing respect for your customers, though, it is also important to show respect for yourself and your brand. You have worked hard to build your brand and develop quality content. You should not embrace positive content marketing to the extent where you lose that respect. There is no amount of traffic or exposure that is worth more than trust, respect and integrity.
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