- We should produce content that can be shared and connected by credible sources where your target is engaged in the conversation or content.
- Social Media should have compelling stories involved
- We’re seeing a trend of traditional journalists moving towards digital work
Why do we need to take a different look at the content we create? Is it really that important?
We are in a correction at the present moment: a paid media correction. This means that brands are too far underweight in owned content, and we need to bulk up our owned content processes. There are many reasons for this correction. Here’s a few to chew on.
No Technology Barriers – In the past, the publishing process was complex and expensive. Traditionally, media companies spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on complex content management and production systems. Today, anyone can publish for free, online, in five minutes (seconds) or less.
Talent Availability – Journalists are no longer wary of working for non-media companies. In 2012, CMI performed a workshop for 13 technology companies. Each tech company had an open position for an in-house journalist, managing editor or content marketing director. Today, these positions are being filled by journalists who have made the move from the traditional media side. This trend is just getting started.
Content Acceptance – You don’t have to be the Wall Street Journal to have your content be engaged with and shared. Consumers are making a decision on the spot as to what is credible and what is not. According to a 2012 Edelman study, Millenials, now between the ages 19 to 34, actually expect brands to develop content for them, with 80% wanting to be directly entertained through content marketing and three in 10 expecting all other forms of content.
In addition, Sally Hogshead, author of the book Fascinate, says that a company has as little as nine seconds to capture the attention of their customer. That goes for both media and non-media companies. Helpful and compelling content cuts through the clutter. Everything else gets ignored, skipped or disregarded.
Social Media – Social media doesn’t work for most brands without valuable, consistent and compelling information creation and distribution. If brands want to be successful in social media, they need to tell compelling stories first. According to the 2013 CMI/MarketingProfs Content Marketing Benchmarks Study, almost 90% of businesses leverage social media to communicate with customers. This type of penetration means that more organizations are trying to figure out what kind of content to put into those social media channels.
Google – Google’s recent major algorithm updates, Penguin and Panda, show that Google is putting more and more importance on content sharing. From what Google will tell us, content shared from credible sources is key to being found in search. So if you want to be found in search engines today, it’s almost impossible to game the system (sometimes called “black hat search engine optimization”) without a solid content marketing strategy.
All this means that content marketing needs to be taken seriously by the B2B organization now, while any sort of competitive advantage exists in your industry.