Content marketing and marketing automation assets: quality or just quantity?
This post was originally published on the Novacom blog.
Marketers know that our contacts in all of our target communities are time-poor. This is due I believe, to the pre-recession reduction in head count and post recession rise in business activity.
So why are we producing protracted blogs, long, drawn out how-to articles, and over-written so-called white papers, that do little other than act as a publicity medium for agency self-promotion?
The long and the short of it
And by its mere existence there is another self-promotion technique that for me makes the whole thing worse still: the blog-a-day approach.
This rapid, daily posting makes me wonder where people in our industry get the time to do the deep research necessary to produce informed and valuable guidance and opinion for our clients so quickly. But what actually concerns me is not these guys, and the over-simplified premises they work to, it’s more worrying than that.
Long on copy, short on ideas
What is really of concern seems to be the amount of long-form written material designed as purportedly helpful knowledge, channelled for delivery through value pathways, and as rewards in marketing automation and other 'value' journeys.
If you read this material as much as we here at Novacom do, you will reach a terrible realisation: there is nothing new. Most of this material is regurgitated or plagiarised content that just keeps re-circulating, taking on some weird, fact-free life of its own.
Time poor, short-tempered lawyer
And the result of this? Well the weekly Novacom blog from last week was about inbound marketing. As you will know, the email alert from us asserted: 'outbound marketing and random, untargeted and indiscriminate marketing communications are no longer effective.'
A new subscriber, a UK lawyer, only got that far before suspecting further vacuous nonsense was on its way and emailed us with:
I guess he was so convinced he was receiving more inane nonsense, he didn't even bother reading the next line, which as you know covered the potential value of skilful inbound marketing and marketing automation, so he completely missed the point of what we were saying.
I also guess that due to time pressures he had forgotten that he had even subscribed in the first place.
Yes, it was a bit rude, and because we totally believe in interactive conversation and in turn, inbound marketing, we will email him to try to help him understand the opportunities he missed in his speedy and perfectly understandable actions.
But what this does illustrate is just what you and I, working against this valueless, ill-researched and in some cases unethical marketing white noise now have to contend with.
The reality is we are in a transition. There is an increasing amount of textual junk around, and we are going to have to wait for people like our hard-pressed lawyer to become more Internet-savvy and therefore more discerning.
And, to be fair, this is happening now and our stats here at Novacom are beginning to indicate this quite clearly.
Discrimination will overcome
But what of those who peddle this junk as reality? Well, discernment is the other side of the transition coin, and as this side of the coin is flipped and hits the sunlight, and discrimination prevails, so this incessant stream of nonsense will be perceived for what it actually is: Valueless.