The Problem With Content

The Problem With Content

By John Jantsch

I’m in San Diego today speaking at Social Media Marketing World. The message of content marketing has certainly taken root in the digital and social marketing space and as the message of content, content, content grows louder and louder so too does the level of frustration.

content marketing

photo credit: Exothermic via photopin cc

Producing content actually requires some work. Producing lots of content requires even more work and, well, let’s not event talk about the work required to consistently product high quality content.

But here’s the semi ironic thing. The problem with content is not that you don’t have enough, it’s that you have too much. In an attempt to feed the content beast many marketers have lost focus on the narrative of who they are, why they do what they do and why their customers are attracted to their brands.

In effect, we’re attempting to write about everything and in doing so connecting with nothing.

Before content will truly serve as an effective community attracting and building mechanism, it must be laced with a potent dose of focus.

That’s not to say that a good 50 Ways to do X post won’t always draw eyeballs, but so will wearing a really short skirt into a bar – the question is, does that lead towards building a supportive community and achieving your objectives?

Content must spring from the one true thing your business stands for and become a story that becomes a greater narrative that lives on in your community with no real end.

You do this by telling fewer stories – over and over again. You do this by using clarity, the one real thing you’re business stands for in the mind of the market, as a filter for voice and message.

You solve your content problem when you use content to:

  • Narrow your focus to an ideal client’s unmet needs
  • Share stories that build trust and expose vulnerability
  • Help define problems your customers don’t know they have
  • Give your customers a way to collaborate and personalize
  • Help determine the real intent of your prospective clients

I happen to believe that the highest objective of any business is the building of a vibrant community. Start sharing less and focusing more on the content that signals why someone would want to join your narrative and you’ll start to witness how community actually forms.


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