Content is more than a buzzword. Some marketing fads were meant not to last – dials and knobs on websites, flash videos, squeeze pages…. but content isn’t a fad and isn’t going anywhere. In fact, you could say content is the quintessential component of marketing itself. Marketing *without* content is fluff, and the emerging socially savvy audience (in all venues) is becoming immune to fluff.
All Your Marketing is Content
When you send a newsletter, create a video, or record a voice mail greeting, those are all content. You and your business are producers, and content is what you produce. In fact, whatever else you may create, provide, or deliver, it doesn’t get sold without content. In effect, too, the best content wins. Even if your stuff is better, it might as well not be if you can’t reach the audience more effectively than the next guy. Even word of mouth is… content – and even if your product or service is stellar, it only gets fully understood in the context of the a conversation to which you can contribute.
Content is a Form of Leadership
The most effective act of competition you can engage in, besides doing tangibly more desirable work, is to communicate that expectation by being the obvious resource for problem solving in your field. You do that by solving the most obvious ones proactively, and continually watching for more.
Content is an Active Conversation
Some companies treat their marketing like little more than a glorified listing, and then complain that their competition is getting all the business. Passive marketing is getting your contact information up on a bulletin board, phone book, or search engine and hoping someone crosses over your bridge like the unwitting billy goats unaware of the troll. It’s lowest common denominator marketing – the blank face holding out a cup, hoping for change. Active marketing is producing something useful for people before they come looking for you, and delivering it to where they already are. In other words, active marketing is producing and sharing content.
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