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I can tell you how to earn six figures working from home. Just read this post about how to win at content marketing — which is in itself a piece of content marketing — and join my mailing list to get a free download.

Does anyone ever click on this awful stuff anymore?

The pyramid premise

Remember those pyramid selling schemes? No one made money selling these products to end users because it cost too much to buy stock and no one wanted it. The only way to make money was by recruiting more dumb-preneurs and selling them the starter pack. So in the end, the product was irrelevant: the business was selling a dream of financial freedom and autonomy, which will never be achieved. They are ponzi schemes: all shell.

Spoiler alert — content is actually quite hard

Back to “content marketing”. Sounds great doesn’t it? Earn £££ with just your laptop and so on. But somewhere along the line, people realised that content marketing was quite hard to do. They couldn’t get the gigs, so they switched to selling “Ten Secrets of Successful Content Marketing You’re Getting Wrong” to people who, for some reason, still dreamed of doing it. Not only do they prey unethically on the gullible and unhappy, but they fill the web with useless drivel.

Does anyone write about actual things?

As a result it’s getting harder to find any content on the web that isn’t about how to write content for the web. I’m part of a group about blogging whose members only seem to write blogs about blogging. And the people telling other people how to make a successful blog … don’t have successful blogs. Somewhere along the line, selling the dream became easier than living it.

Where is the actual work?

“Content marketing” as a concept is merely a way to describe building authority and trust by publishing great work on your area of speciality. Today, Google knows the difference between something authentic and something arch, some souped-up listicle full of paid links and pop-ups and all the other guff. So there’s no special trick that some gatekeeper can reveal to you. There’s no secret button you can push to game the system.

The way to get content to work for you is to create authentic, real work that touches people and solves their problem. Because people are desperately searching for something real. When you get that right, search marketing takes care of itself. When you get that right, you will shine out as a voice of reason in a sea of pushy fakers.