Marketing December 3, 2010 Last updated September 18th, 2018 1,939 Reads share

The Content Is King Myth

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Content is King! You’ve heard it so many times. Indeed, when you hear this phrase from experts week in, week out, it’s hard to believe it mightn’t be true. Could it?

One of the most enduring myths on the Internet is that Content is King. It’s close – but not true.

Think about it. Why should Content be King? Why not the application, or the medium, or even the writer?

And what is content? It’s the words, phrases, images that fly past. Shuffle them up and you get… well, you get lots of things.

Different things to different people.

You may ask yourself: well… how did I get here?

Take Catherine. She writes about the negative effects of stress and how to reduce it. Or Greg Fry, he provides LinkedIn makeovers. Or Elaine’s Business Coaching which oils the locks so we can use the keys to life.

These writers have two things in common: topics and readers.

And they have two things that are very different: different topics and different readers.

Work with me a second.

You May Ask Yourself: Where Does That Highway Lead To?

Let’s take a deeper look.

  • Catherine’s shows her clients that the best way to manage your stress is to learn healthy coping strategies.
  • Greg’s readers are looking for a service, such as improving their LinkedIn profile.
  • Elaine provides business consulting skills, mostly to clients in Southern Ireland.
  • Elli St. George Godfrey (whose Twitter chat #kaizenblog uses the concept of “kaizen” for continual improvement) may target more US-based clients.

All of these provide great content but what makes them different is… context.

You May Ask Yourself: Am I right?.. Am I wrong?

Your content is only of value to readers when it relates to their interests – and usually their immediate interests.

You see the same thing on TV every night.

Mom watches S&TC, Dad watches Ice Road Truckers, and the kids watch… well, they’re probably on the web because that where it’s at for them.

How to Create Content That People (Really) Want to Read

If you’re reading Bloggertone, you’re probably interested in using the web to raise your profile, attract new clients and network with others.

Why not? When you do it right, it works very well.

And one of the most effective – and simplest – ways to do this is to write.

Words are in the DNA of business. We all like to read material from experts that solve problems to our needs as quickly as possibly.

Here’s the quick version: read – expert – to solve – problem – now.

And this is where context comes into the frame.

If you want your blog, Facebook page and Twitter to gain traction, do the following:

  • Target Audience – work out their age, location, education, and occupation. This helps fine-tune your material.
  • Pain Points – identify the top three issues they want fixed. Build your Editorial Calendar around these topics. Don’t stray!
  • Provide Benefits – outline how you will help them reach their objectives, for example, providing answers to their most pressing needs. Give example, case studies and reach out to other bloggers.
  • Adds Value – create content that is a step above your competitors. In other words, go the extra yard in each article so it stands out. Otherwise, it’s hard to make any real impact.
  • Be Useful – don’t write about your passion (another myth?), write about what’s passionate to them.
  • Writing Style – write in a simple down-to-earth manner that appeals to the reader, break up text into lists and short paragraphs to improve readability, and use generous lashings of white space to make it easy on the eye.

Why Context is King

We’ve now come full circle. So, is Content King?

Yes, providing it’s in context.

My own ‘lesson learned’ after blogging twelve years is that the sooner you identify your target readers, the faster it grow legs.

You’re not writing for the Web.

You’re bringing people with similar worldviews together – and giving them exactly what they want. And then again and again…

What’d you think?

Ivan Walsh

Ivan Walsh

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