What to Do When Your Content Marketing Isn’t Working
What to Do When Your Content Marketing Isn’t Working

What to Do When Your Content Marketing Isn’t Working

Content marketing is incredibly valuable in educating prospects and showcasing your expertise. It’s not always helpful in getting discovered by new people, especially if you’re not investing a lot of time and resources into your SEO.

Here’s the thing: Content marketing isn’t just about pushing content, like your blogs, podcasts, and YouTube videos, out into the world. There’s more to it than that, which I’ve talked about before.

On this episode, I’m sharing two easy things you can do right now to help boost your prospect list and breathe new life into your content marketing. They’re not quick fixes, but they do work when done consistently! Tune in now.

Mentioned in This Episode


Welcome to episode 156 of The Content Experiment Podcast, a podcast that supports the idea that content and marketing are ever-moving targets in any business and it’s okay if you don’t feel like you’re doing it ALL right, ALL of the time. You have permission to experiment with little tweaks and changes in your content to find what works for you, what increases value for your audience and what grows your business. And most importantly, what feels good for you

I’m Abby Herman, content strategist and consultant for online business owners who are ready to make a bigger impact online and CEO and creative director of The Content Experiment, a content marketing agency that offers full service content marketing and podcast management.

I firmly believe that success isn’t about what big marketing brands and so-called gurus think is the right thing; it’s about you and your business. Your lifestyle and, frankly, your values and belief systems.

You get to do business in a way that works for you.

One of the things I love about being a business owner is that I get to decide what work looks like. I can determine what’s no longer serving me (so I can let it go) or how to tweak my hours so I can live the lifestyle I want.

I can also decide what’s working well–so I can double down on it–and what’s not working at all. 

Hopefully you feel the same. I remember back in my teaching days, I couldn’t even go to the bathroom without feeling like I needed permission.

If you’re listening in real time, it’s the day before Thanksgiving in the U.S. and our team has been working really hard to take most of this week off. We’ve put in a few more hours than normal in the weeks leading up to this to make sure that all client work is taken care of and we can enjoy our families.

It’s time away from our computers that allows us the space we need to make decisions about our businesses.

As you’re taking time to reflect and look ahead to next year, I want you to think about where you want to go. What does success look like, 12 months from today?

Growth of some sort is usually top of the list. It’s usually on my list too. And if you’ve been working on your content and marketing for a while and you’re not feeling like the growth is coming, you’re not alone.

We’ve worked with a lot of business owners over the years. And we’ve created a lot of content. That content is incredibly valuable for showcasing your expertise and giving new audience members value. It’s a tool for nurturing your audiences and keeping you top of mind.

It’s not always good at attracting new people. 

Here’s why: It’s HARD to get found online these days. According to a 2018 Forbes article, 

  • We create 1.5 quintillion bytes of data each day (that’s 10 to the power of 18 – that’s a 1 with 18 zeros after it; a billion has six zeros)
  • There are 40k searches on Google every second
  • Snapchat users share more than half a million photos every minute and Instagram users post 46,740 photos a minute
  • Almost half a million tweets go out each minute
  • People update their FB statuses to the tune of almost 300k a minute

I could go on. But you can see how difficult it is to be found among all this content if all you’re doing is publishing content.

Don’t get me wrong; I love what I do. And it’s so important to your success as a business owner. Content marketing gives you the chance to publish what you want, and what your audience wants.

But at some point, simply publishing content doesn’t work. You can’t expect to grow your audience if you hire a team like mine and do nothing else.

So what happens if you’re finding that what you’re doing now is no longer working?

That’s exactly what I’m going to share on today’s episode.


Don’t stop what you’re doing. It doesn’t make sense to quit marketing if you have a strategy and a good cadence going. Your audience has come to depend on the information you’re sharing.

Stopping your marketing or discontinuing your content puts you at a disadvantage because you’re no longer in front of your audience on a regular basis. It doesn’t save you money; it causes a deficit in your visibility.

Stopping and starting your marketing based on whether you have the time or money for it puts you on a rollercoaster of leads–and that doesn’t feel very good, especially if you have a team you’re responsible for.

The Content Experiment is all about experimenting with little tweaks and changes you can make to your content and marketing to find what works for you. So think about what changes you can make, aside from quitting altogether.

  • What if you included fewer links in your nurturing emails instead of overwhelming subscribers with too many decisions?
  • What if you added a search bar to your blog or podcast page on your website so visitors could find what they wanted easier?
  • What if you enlisted support (hired help) to make sure your content was publishing consistently?
  • What if you stopped overthinking your blogs and committed to done is better than perfect?
  • What if you listened to the marketing professionals out there and stopped questioning every post or link?
  • What if you honed in on your messaging so that each piece of content had a purpose and a call to action?

These are just a few of the challenges that I’m seeing people face right now. What they’re doing isn’t working and it’s simple little things that could potentially turn the tide for them.

Okay, so now I’m going to climb off my soapbox a bit and talk about some other things you can do to help increase the success of your content. I’ve talked about these before, so this is nothing new. But I’m just not seeing enough of this yet.

Build connections and relationships

Connections and relationships are paramount in business. There’s really nothing like them. If you’re not actively seeking out relationships with your ideal audience members, or the people who know your ideal audience, you will continue to struggle.

Here’s a story about how this has worked for me. Years ago, I met someone in a Facebook group for business owner moms. We traveled in the same circle for a while, and I actively provided value in the group. She noticed. Eventually she reached out to me and booked a 90-minute session with me. It was a lower-priced offer, but that’s okay. I provided value and she hired me for another session. Eventually she turned into a long-term retainer client. And about five years later, she’s still a client. But the value of that engagement in that original group doesn’t end there. Over the years, this relationship has create well over $100k in revenue in my business through referrals. At one point, nearly every retainer client I was working with was a referral from this person. 

If I hadn’t been active in that group and had conversations and offered value, this never would have happened. I honestly don’t think I ever directly responded to one of this person’s posts. I was showing up and she noticed me.

Relationships and connections help with my next tip too…

Leverage other people’s audiences

You’re not going to be able to get in front of all the potential clients. Sure, SEO helps on your website. But social media posts alone aren’t going to get you found.

But when you have relationships and connections with others, you have an “in” with their audiences.

I talked about this a couple of weeks ago in episode 154, so I encourage you to go listen in. But basically, when you…

  • Are a guest on someone else’s podcast
  • Teach a workshop in someone’s group
  • Speak at someone’s summit or event
  • Engage in or share someone else’s content

You’re putting yourself in front of a new audience of people who just might jump over to YOUR platform and become a follower of YOU and your content.

So if you’re feeling burned out by the content you’re creating because you’re not getting the results you’d hoped for, ask yourself:

  • Am I being consistent?
  • Have I outsourced what I don’t want to do or don’t have time to do?
  • Am I building connections with others?
  • Am I getting myself in front of other people’s audiences?

If your answer is “no” to any one of these, take a moment and see where you can make a little tweak or change and try something new.

But please, please, don’t just up and stop what you’re doing. Little tweaks and changes are the way to go.

And if you need some help figuring out how to do this, I have VIP intensives available to take a lot of this off your plate for you. Let’s chat. Book a quick chat with me at thecontentexperiment.com/contact.

If you found value in what you learned here today, be sure to share it on social media. Take a screenshot of the episode on your phone and share it over on Instagram stories. Tag me at thecontentexperiment. The more you share, the more we can get the podcast into the hands of more business owners, just like you, who need to hear the message that they are not alone.

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