Editor’s note: This post comes from our Constant Contact UK office. You can view all posts from our UK team here. Or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Many B2B ogranizations already have a funnel identified, yet still find their leads ‘spilling’ out due to common mistakes. When it comes to content marketing you don’t want to get ‘funnel’ vision and only see the lead as an end game. Just like in the dating world, you wouldn’t think about getting them to the altar after one date- it’s all about the journey.

Below we’ve identified five common mistakes made in conversion funnels:

1. Saying too much

Everyone’s heard of those dates where the other person won’t shut up. It’s annoying, right? You don’t have to publish a new blog post every second to stay in your reader’s mind, or spam their inbox and social media feeds. The most important thing is to create unique, high-value content that your reader won’t be able to find anywhere else.

2. Saying the wrong thing

You’re on a date, and chat about your love of steak to a vegan- they’ll find it a huge turn off, right? Writing a hilarious blog post about the agony and ecstasy of childbirth is all well and good, but your business sells engine oil – you’re wasting your time and theirs! Stay relevant to your business and create content around the desires, needs and problems of your target audience.

3. Not deepening the relationship

Just like the guy who won’t stop texting after a first date, haranguing your prospect ain’t cool. But it’s also not okay to expect your prospect do all the work when it comes to developing your relationship. Get an email address as soon as possible. Optimise your blog posts to include a clear newsletter sign up form that’s easy to complete. And if you’re giving away a white paper, why not put the download behind a gateway that requires your reader to give you one of their social media tags?

4. Failing to track user behaviour

When you know what kind of content your prospect is engaging with most, you can create more of the same (and ditch the stuff that isn’t working). What areas of your website are most visited? Which blog posts have been viewed or shared the most? Where are people clicking in your emails? Just like when you’re dating, in a relationship or happily married, you need to pick up on signals.

5. Expecting immediate results

If you want to succeed with content marketing, strap yourself in for the long game. Today’s economy is about long buying cycles- on average it can take 84 days to convert a lead into an opportunity. After all, only crazy people go from the first date to the alter in one move. Building a worthwhile relationship requires patience.

Content that’s obviously trying to convince your reader to open their wallet as fast as possible with obsequious marketing lingo is a stone-cold turn off. You reader isn’t stupid. Don’t be afraid to be yourself.

Have any questions? Ask us in the comments below!