Keeping on Top of the Ever-Changing Communications World
With content and social media marketing emerging as such important aspects of marketing, keeping on top of communications has become vital for business success. We’ve come a long way from passing notes in school, or even inter-company memos. Now, with social media, email, apps, and more, things can get much more complicated and challenging. Using media intelligence and data analysis tools or software programs can help you cut through it all, segment it, and make sense of everything. Today we will explore the changing face of communications and how we can conquer content for business using these five keys: speed of dissemination, share worthiness, incorporating visuals, length, and reach.
Speed of Dissemination
The term “news travels fast” has been around for a very long time; but, it never traveled as fast as it does today. Companies can and should use this to their advantage rather than allowing it to be a detriment. Now, if you aren’t quick about getting your content out there in a timely fashion, you’ve missed the boat and often times, will never catch up. Social content will peak quickly and then die out. When distributing your content to your audience, it must be done timely. The same goes for inter-company messaging. Make sure that your communications system isn’t as outdated as passing notes in class or even waiting for the 6 o’clock news. When it comes to messaging within your company, you know what the relevant information is. However, when it comes to messaging your audience through your content and social channels, harnessing the relevant and popular conversations can come down to how well you know your audience, which media listening can provide crucial insight on.
With the speed of dissemination and the reach potential, it isn’t really about what your company thinks is important content, it is what the audience finds relevant and worth one of the ultimate goals: a share, comment or other engagement metric. Media intelligence can help determine what target audiences are talking about and the feeling towards this content via sentiment analysis. There’s an incredible amount of research and data out there on what makes great content but if you’re starting out, the key is to think about the ingredients that will turn good content into great content, hold attention and leave an impression. For example consider if your content is educational, entertaining, emotionally intelligent and inspirational. Whatever your perfect mix, your content should tell a story rather than just listing information and always have a clear purpose to drive share worthiness.
Did you know that we store 90% of our memory in images? Our brain processes images in a different way than text. Imagery and video blended into your content not only grabs attention, but helps readers remember what you are telling them. Images also help convey a message quickly, which helps with the average reader’s’ low attention span and busy schedule. Photos, videos, and graphics might seem like an extra expense or extra effort, but the results make it all worth it when you see the results in your content marketing success. Rather than trying to churn out new topics, casse studies or white papers, instead leverage each piece further by creating new visual mediums suited to different audiences that all lead to the original piece that you spent the majority of your efforts, and likely your owned media source for conversions.
Length of Content and Messaging
What length should your content be? The answer, as with most aspects of marketing, is “it depends”. It really does depend on your audience and how they consume your content. The way to achieve your unique answer is to use data analysis and media monitoring along with regular A/B marketing tests. You might even need to deliver your content in both long and short form to appeal to wide varieties of audiences and target markets. However, it is important to remember that a recent study discovered that the current attention span of humans is about 8 seconds. That means gearing your content for this short attention span is vital. Use lists, images that are worth a thousand words, and snackable content to help combat the lack of long attention spans.
The ultimate goal of your content and communications are for your messages to reach the intended audience. For websites and social media content nowadays, this often means paying for listings and placement. Organic content is not reaching intended audiences like it once was able to. This means budgeting and structuring your content and communications appropriately. There’s also new tactics like employee advocacy that leverage the changing nature of user behavior and algorithmic barrios for brands and businesses alike.
While we can’t control the shifting landscape, the need to adapt and adopt new techniques is clear. Changing ones perspective and having an audience first mindset will be essential, as will new technologies that are future focused as the speed of change doesn’t look to be slowing.