Generals Don’t Inspect The Bullets

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IMG_0713As the content arms race rolls on, I’m beginning suspect that some CMOs are getting off track in their approach to content marketing.

Too much oversight.  Too much strategy. Too much handwringing.

In my experience, the primary value of content marketing is catching a prospect at the moment they happen to be searching for the product or service your enterprise offers.  And in search, one of the primary variables driving rank is freshness.

Catching a prospect mid-search means, for better or worse, content distributed across social media platforms is nothing more than a rifle shot.   The only consideration after it’s been fired, beyond a brief evaluation of its effectiveness, is loading up the chamber and firing another.

If this sounds irresponsible, it’s not meant to be.  It’s rooted in the notion that understanding clients, customers, prospects and leads occurs after a meaningful number of trials.  Publishing content provides data and insights, but there’s often a much wider canvas, and to see it and meaningfully act upon it, more frequent and consistent distribution is required.

But what I see is marketing retarded by too many layers of oversight worrying about whether content is ‘on brand’ or grammatically unimpeachable or whether it might provoke a legal firestorm, or offend, or become inaccurate someday.  These are valid concerns, but with the amount of information on the Internet doubling — what, every two years? — being present in the flow trumps being perfect.

Without question oversight, strategy and worry are the stuff of great brands and great results.  However in the current environment, these exertions might be more productively deployed on an itinerant rather than constant basis.