Holy guacamole, it’s the end of January!  On the plus, it’s Friday, which means it’s time for the Fix (so, um, pass that guacamole and some chips, yeah?).  Here are a few of the key themes from this week in content marketing for you to chew on.  The main idea that’s getting bounced around is that content marketing success is experienced only after trial and error (so brace yourselves for experimental impact by reading the Fix).

5 Mistakes You’re Making with Your Content Marketing Strategy
As Jayson DeMers points, content marketing is relatively new, which I interpret to mean that there’s room for error.  In this piece, Jayson outlines the five biggest mistakes he’s observed in the business.  For example, you know your brand, you have your story, but then you’re misreading your audience.  Either it’s the wrong demographic (like if Grand Theft Auto was marketed toward the elderly) or the language is too simplistic or complex.  For more details and the other four mistakes, check out Jayson’s whole article.

8 Content Marketing Trends to Watch Out for in 2015 (Infographic)
I’m loving Jomer Gregorio’s post this week on upcoming trends because (1) infographics are awesome, and (2) these trends make me very excited for the future.  On a personal note, I’m thrilled that marketing will use more professional writers (wink); I’m also very excited to read that marketing and social media marketing are going to tie the knot.  The most important question now is will the cake icing be buttercream or fondant?  While Jomer doesn’t get into cake details, the other specifics in the article more than make up for the lack of cake talk.

What is Innovation in Content Marketing?  4 Steps to Finding the Answer
Caitlin Roberson leads into this smart strategies piece with the daunting fact that consumers are hit by as many as 3,000 messages a day; on top of that, we have other things to worry about, like who will be Top Chef?  Needless to say, a lot of stuff gets filtered out, which is why, Caitlin says, it’s time to get innovative.  Easier said than done (much like winning Top Chef), true innovation takes trial and error.  Caitlin breaks down how to use the iteration of errors to end up on top. (No need to pack your keywords and go.)

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Outsourced Content Marketing
I love pros and cons lists…I still have the one I used when deciding whether or not to date my husband all those years ago.  In a way, the direction you go with your content marketing (outsourced vs. not) is an equally big commitment.  Thankfully, Chloe Basterfield has taken it upon herself to explore the pros and cons of outsourcing content marketing.  There are lots of pros and words to the wise, like if you are planning to outsource, make sure you pick someone professional, of reputable quality, and who is equally committed to the relationship.

Avoid Content Marketing Until You Can Answer “Yes” to These Two Questions
Casey Wright’s two questions are easy to answer (essentially, do you know yourself and values and is that what you provide to customers)?  Easy, right?  Not so much.  To illustrate how horribly, horribly wrong things can go if you misrepresent yourself to customers, Casey looks at McDonalds, the fast food giant that’s tried to rebrand as “healthy” but is essentially drowning in 50 years of saturated fat and mystery meat because consumers associate McDonalds with a lot of things (dollar menu, happy meals, the McRib) but healthy still isn’t one of them (at least not yet).

5 Content Marketing Ideas for February 2015
We know that since you’re documenting your plan and writing your editorial calendars in advance, you may have to work some of these ideas into what you’re doing for February.  If you do, I think you’ll be pleased with the results.  For example, Armando Roggio suggests making Valentine’s Day, people’s favorite holiday to love to hate but celebrate with gusto anyway, part of your strategy.  The other suggestions are equally likely to bear fruit.

Content Marketing Strategies for Generating Leads
With this piece, Michael Foster explores the concerns posed by content marketing.  As you’re probably aware if you’ve read all of the other posts in this week’s Fix, content marketing is still evolving, and there are a lot of unknown variables at play.  On the plus, the undeveloped landscape is a goldmine for opportunity and innovation.  On the downside, most organizations don’t have resources to build a city that no one wants to live in.  According to Michael, the concerns highlighted in this piece will be subject of discussion at LeadsCon in March in Las Vegas (so, um, start planning Spring Break?).

Pinterest is Perfect for Content Marketing
If you’ve only ever heard of Pinterest, you’re probably wondering what a glorified craft site for stay-at-home moms whose kids are in college has to do with content (by the way, I’m just teasing fellow moms; I know we don’t have time for fancy crafts; we barely have time to clean the floors our kids eat off of.).  I digress.  Take it from Michelle G. Held how to cleverly integrate Pinterest into your strategy to the tune of much success (no Pinterest fails here!).

5 Ways to Improve Your E-mail Approach for Content Marketing
Though we’re dealing with e-mails in this post, Jennifer McNabb has the same underlying message as a lot of this week’s pundits,which is that trial and error are going to be what ultimately deliver success.  One big challenge of e-mail is just getting people to open the thing (as one who deletes many an e-mail message without opening it, I can support this message), hence Jennifer provides some smart (and bold) suggestions for those subject lines among other things.  

zombies at night

Content Marketing Killers are Everywhere
Lee Traupel wins for “catchiest title of the week” with this one.  Killers are everywhere?  I’m going to need details.  In this article, Lee escorts us through the content development process highlighting ways you can be your own worst enemy along the way.  In a nutshell, don’t overthink it and take your time.  Of course, you’ll need to read the article to get the details on slaying pesky content zombies that come out at night.

Amy Delcambre is a freelance content and travel writer from Mobile, Alabama with a Master's in Creative Writing. When she's not painting the page with nouns, verbs, and adverbs, she's slaying grammar beasts as a freelance editor and saving the world one sentence fragment at a time teaching university writing classes. In her free time, Amy enjoys cooking, traveling, and testing which plant species best survive prolonged neglect.

Connect with Amy:  LinkedIn

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