A Kentico Software survey shows that a whopping 74% of the general public trusts content from a business whose aim is educational. But this trust plummets nearly 30% if the content contains a product pitch. Also noteworthy: 85% of people are no more trusting of content simply because they buy from the company that publishes it.
These figures speak volumes about your content’s power to build brand credibility—and not just among your buyers but among everyone who reads it. The stats also reveal just how easily your credibility can be eroded by sales pitches and poorly disguised advertorials.
Hey, I understand how difficult it can be for marketers to restrain themselves from dropping in a quick little plug at the end of a blog post or an article. I’m guilty of it myself. The good news, judging by the survey, is that we don’t completely kill the credibility we’ve worked so hard to generate. Roughly 44% of respondents still place a measure of trust in our content. However, we’re clearly undercutting our own success when we start pitching. And we might never get a chance to reestablish that precious trust with some readers. One whiff of a sales pitch and they’re gone for good.
So the next time you feel the urge to drop a sales pitch into your educational content, ask yourself whether it’s worth the potential loss of credibility and readership.
Besides, if you’re investing in content creation for instant sales and conversions, get set for disappointment. Content creation isn’t an instant gratification sport—not when it comes to sales. It’s much more effective in building brand recognition, visibility and trust, all of which eventually moves the needle on sales and growth. Not just in short bursts but for the long term.
And that beats instant gratification every time.
About the Author: Michael Civiello is a communications strategist and senior writer at fisher VISTA. He collaborates with clients every day to develop messaging, content and PR campaigns that build brand awareness and marketplace credibility.
Secondary image by Benjamin Earwicker, courtesy of Freeimages.com.