The current debate in content marketing circles reminds me of the old story about clerics debating how many angels could dance on the head of a pin.
While the clerics argue, the world moves on and nobody cares about their esoteric debate. In the process they lose their relevance to mainstream society.
Is there too much content? Is there such a thing as ‘content shock’? And remember, just because someone coins a phrase it doesn’t mean the phrase signifies a real thing.
If I write about the ‘advertising apocalypse’, however well or provocatively, it doesn’t automatically mean that I am either describing a real phenomenon or causing one. It’s just words.
What concerns me, as a lifelong content marketer, is the sight of an entire industry consuming itself trying to create even more valuable information and then devise even more ingenious ways to give it away.
Even if the ‘winners’ – and I’m not sure that’s an apt term – do succeed in grabbing market share, they have only succeeded in a marketplace where no money changes hands.
‘We’re right and you’re wrong,’ they crow. ‘There are 18,675 angels on a pinhead.’
But who are the real pinheads when the market leaders are those who have spent money, time and energy giving the most valuable information away?
The real winners will be those organisations who understand that part of the phrase that describes their activities is ‘marketing’.
Last time I looked, ‘marketing’ usually defines itself with some reference to profitability.
So yes, by all means, cloister yourselves with your peers and debate whether or not the total amount of content created exceeds the total amount of time available for its consumption.
But remember, your clients may move on without you, as their ROI fails to materialise.
Thanks to Sonja Jefferson of Valuable Content for pointing me at the article in the link above.