"Content is information others find useful or entertaining or both.
It is not necessarily what you want to tell people. It is what they want or need to hear. Content marketing is about providing that type of information on an enduring basis."
The term ‘content marketing’ may have recently landed in Australia but the practice of content marketing has been with us for a very long time.
Down the centuries people have always shared their content. It could be in the form of knowledge and awareness of the world around them, transferring skills, warning others of danger and or just passing along useful facts, figures and opinions.
Today the demand for helpful content, from reliable sources, is the greatest at anytime in history. That is because personal and corporate communications are changing fast, our lives are busier than ever and we are increasingly selective in choosing who we listen to.
- Families are time-poor. Too many people want our attention and we would be simply overwhelmed if we surrendered to their demands.
- Since 2003, social media has accelerated the pace and rate of communications change. Social media has an insatiable appetite for information and gives us a channel for direct and very personal information. It also gifts us each of us with a publishing platform and a filtering system. We now have numerous options to receive and share information, anytime, anywhere, any place. And we can easily block out information from those we distrust, don't now or who hold different interests or attitudes.
- Recent Australian research shows we are skeptical about what we hear. We mistrust brands, business, government and other traditional sources of information. (2013 Edelman Trust Barometer for Australia.) and operate on the basis that no organisation has the right to be heard.
- Traditional media used to be the dominant communications channel for most of us. Now it is fragmenting and as it searches for new business models, it is becoming one more way - not the only way - to connect people with similar opinions, behaviours or needs.
So it is time for a different PR approach if we want to find, produce and share the type of information that will connect us to our customers, clients or fellow citizens.
Enter content marketing, an evolution of old-style marketing. It is a system that is gaining traction in the US and now emerging in Australia.