I attended a conference yesterday where the speaker, Christopher Penn – VP Marketing Technology for SHIFT Communications, discussed the vast amount of content (words, pictures, video) that is being published on the Internet every minute. Its is huge! Customers have more choices than ever. It is impossible for one person or a group of dedicated people to read and review everything. The author also pointed out the due to the ease that individuals can publish the amount of work available is increasing exponentially at an ever increasing rate.
We are drowning in data and it only is going to get worse.
The question he had for all of us is how do you differentiate yourself from everyone else? How do you make your work stand out and be noticed by your target customer?
The answer is you must create great content. Oh and it is great in the eye of the customer not the author. So what is great? The author suggested that if your content does not meet one of the following criteria it is bad. One is average. If it meets two or more it is great. If it meets all three (which is very rare) it is awesome!
THE THREE “L’S”
- Your customer will Laugh
- Your customer will Learn
- Your customer will Love
If an individual will laugh & learn, laugh and love, learn and love etc they are much more likely to pass your content on to others. Others will pass to others etc. etc.
This works very well in a B2C environment (think Old Spice or Super Bowl Doritos commercials) but it also will work in the B2B space. If a customer can find my content (through an email invitation, a tweet, a recommendation from others) and learns something from my blog, my video, my white paper and loves it enough to pass it on to others within their company my content helps to educate and nurture. The customer is more receptive to my message and is more willing to tell others about it. Trust between us goes up.
The world and the market is changing. Google and other search engines have algorithms that will judge the how good content is. Don’t ask me how this is done but I hear there are some high paid PhD’s working and refining this daily. Mr. Penn said that Google will penalize your website for publishing bad content (bad grammar, misspellings, over use of key words).
In his opinion no content is better than bad content. This is a major shift from a months past where consultants and leaders in the field said publish, publish, publish. It is the quantity of new content that counts. Not anymore. You need to publish. You need to update your website and other electronic media regularly in order to get traction but in order to separate your work from all the junk out there your readers need to think your content is great.
Maybe it is just common sense. You want your customers to refer to you as an expert in your field. You want your customers to recommend you to people they trust. Your actions need to back up those words. Stop chasing easy solutions. Start chasing great ones.
Questions / Comments please reach out.
Until next time – all the best!