Jan 09, 2013

If cats have nine lives, why can’t our content?

PR Newswire staffers Malcolm Atherton & Natalie Bering are on site at CES 2013.

PR Newswire staffers Malcolm Atherton & Natalie Bering are on site at CES 2013.

The day before the show floor opened CES 2013 booths received their finishing touches and exhibitors descended on Las Vegas. The lesser known fact is that CES is not just more than 1.8 million net square feet of exhibits, but it is also a learning conference with industry and role specific tracks.

Yesterday I was able to attend Women in Advertising: Innovation in Digital Technologies where eight accomplished and powerful women were poised to share their experiences with us. The landscape of the panel spanned from large agencies to small start-ups.

In the course of the discussion, the panelists encouraged us to think about our own messaging. Is our content relevant? How do we get the content to those that matter? What is our story? How do we tell it? I sat in the audience thinking that this is the same conversation that all communication practitioners are having – no matter if you’re in marketing, PR, or at an agency.

What was interesting was the digital perspective. The revolution is not necessarily the technology but how the content is being consumed and how to get where your audience needs you to be. Beth McCabe, VP/Group Director, Social Marketing & Technology, Digitas mentioned that it isn’t always about marketing using the latest and greatest technology but being inspired by it. For example, they have a MakerBot in their office, they are not exactly sure what is going to come of it but they are playing with it to see what it sparks. A Death Star, maybe?

The point that resonated the most for me was how are you making what you’re doing function across platforms? Does it relate and is it seamless? One example was if you are creating a innovative interactive digital board how are you then taking that content to create long tail success for the parts that make the whole? The videos to be used via social channels, and iPad apps for your sales team to leverage, in addition to weaving the assets to tell your story from different vantage points.

Again how are we as communicators supposed to repurpose our content to tell our story to that specific segment of our audience?

An audience question about if gender played a role in how these women create their strategy was answered in an array of strange recounts of being in male dominated fields, but I found the most satisfying answer to be from Kristin Ganong, VP, Digital Strategy and Engagement at Diageo. She acknowledged that gender shapes us, but that her strategy comes from being relevant to her customer needs and their audience.

Audiences in today’s landscape is looking for a personal and targeted experience, which necessitates communicators to meet them where they are on the devices they use with content that matters to them.

We are creating great content, why should it only have one life?

1 Comments on Blog Post Title

worthingtonlevy 11:50 EST on Jan 11, 2013

Key to this is the value of the content in terms of relevance, not simply its presence. It’s been pretty disappointing to read some of the content out there and realize that to save money, many who add content are not policing it for actual value in the content and the quality of the writing.

Content is, to my mind, very much akin to the great direct marketing letters. The ones that do best have content that’s valuable to the reader. But since there are so few companies (including major financial institutions) willing to hire really great specialists in direct marketing copy, of course nobody’s reading the letters. They’re boring! Lazy writers and untrained juniors write dreck that nobody shares, and nobody reads and remembers.

Can our industry please raise the bar this year, and budget for quality content? Oh, and a proofreader…

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