Since the end of May, we've been involved in the following:
- Completed a re-branding effort for a marketing and design agency
- Teamed up with Blend Consults to work on the Sierra Club's involvement in the upcoming People's Climate March
- Started a pro bono project for the Center for Human Development
- Started providing content for the AHTGroup
- Contracted with another agency to provide strategic consulting to select clients
Needless to say this has kept us from creating anything for ourselves! The cobbler's kids thing…again. But it hasn't kept us from noticing a few things in the branding world. Most notably this whole idea around content and what to do with it.
The value of content has always been a bit of a see saw. At one point, it's valued was hampered by access when broadband was hard to come by and data couldn't stream as quickly or as easily. Most of that issue has gone away -- unless your Netflix and you have to count on Comcast and/or Verizon to deliver streaming content without stopping for a mid-way buffer. But that's a topic for another post.
Today, there is so much content that the argument now seems to have gone toward the value of paid vs. earned. Depending on what you read and who you talk to there seems to be enough data to support either one or both. But there's another part of this argument that isn't being addressed and that's retention and action - how much of this content is being remembered and acted upon. We've seen a few studies on the latter, but none definitive.
So rather than figuring this out, brands keep creating more content (paid and unpaid). It's like loading up the shotgun with more buckshot, hoping something will hit once you fire. It's pretty clear no one has figured this out. And until they do, we're going to be creating more and more content, but creating less and less action or even influence. The brands who finally get the balancing act will end up on top. Until then, the people storing all of this data are the only ones who seem to be making out just fine.