Content are Stories and Experiences, not Letters and Pixels

6211797161_38b0ee11c7_b

Never before in the history of mankind, has so much content been consumed by so many people. We spend almost every waking hour consuming some sort of content and increasingly we consume content in parallel, e.g., browsing the web while simultaneously watching the television. Interrupting the consumer with advertising increasingly causes just a switch in attention of consumer to some other content source, substantially reducing effectiveness of traditional advertising campaigns. It is this change in consumers' habits that makes content marketing increasingly more attractive option for acquisition of customers. The biggest challenge of content marketing is creation of content that consumers would find interesting. Way too often companies approach content marketing by hiring some writer and then they expect him to start produce content that would be massively consumed by target audience while simultaneously advancing commercial interests of the company. The proliferation of infographics and company blogs that nobody reads and shares is a testament of failure of such approach. After several successful content marketing campaigns I've run myself lately (e.g. Start-up crawl, Zemanta challenge, the blog you're reading), I've come to realize that the main goal of a content marketing campaign should be to create an experience, a compelling story that's worth writing about, while actual texts, videos, and other media are just means how to let wider audience learn about the story you've created. I think this understanding is something that content marketeers are badly lacking.