Be consistent with your content

It is now commonly accepted that one of the commonest headaches provided by the explosion of opportunities for content online — and subsequent marketing communications opportunities — has been allocating responsibility for content creation and creating an internal process to make production consistent.

Moneyball movie poster

Oakland Athletics’s General Manager Billy Beane is played in Moneyball by Brad Pitt

Blogs, social media and email marketing are all hungry for creative content whether it is created from scratch or curated. The point is that it doesn’t happen by magic.

The biggest culprit to content marketing success is a lack of consistency and, in some cases, a total content failure. Research from IBM, in 2010, (thanks Rebecca Lieb) found that about 80 percent of corporate blogs never post more than five entries.

If you have seen, or heard, of Moneyball, the story about how Oakland Athletics revolutionised baseball in 2002 by focusing on the statistics (sabermetrics) that had been previously thought unimportant. Manager Billy Beane took a team, with a payroll up to a third of the bigger teams, to success by concentrating on being consistent in the areas that really mattered.

Apply this to content marketing. Many companies are looking for the big burst, the piece of viral inspiration, the devastating campaign instead of putting in the time, day in, day out on the steady production of good content.

Simply put, most content marketing initiatives fail because content, for whatever reason, dries up. You will succeed at content marketing because you keep your brand promise, develop content around that promise and stick at a process. Every week, every month, you stick at it. Consistency.

Old Spice ad

Men, and women, seemed to like the Old Spice guy!

Take the 2011 Old Spice/Twitter/YouTube campaign. It was brilliant. Probably, one of the best real-time content marketing and social media examples ever.

It was also one of the worst. Why? Because it stopped. They treated that content marketing initiative just like another campaign, because it echoed content from an offline campaign…they gave it a time limit.

Like any savvy publisher, they could have continued to adapt and evolve the content. They could have continued the engagement (and revenue growth).

There’s a simple moral here. Develop a consistent approach to content creation, or curation. Call it a Content Strategy, or whatever you like, but include it as a heading in the next version of your marketing communications planning.

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