Content creation is increasingly redundant. This is true in blogging and media, but especially in B2B and B2C marketing. Every brand has to have a blog, but brands recycle the same content, or throw some buzzwords onto old concepts, to keep generating new posts.
According to a report by BuzzSumo and Moz on audience engagement, 50% of articles do not receive more than two interactions on Facebook. The constant slew content becomes invaluable and a waste of resources if nobody reads it. The same report found that articles over 1000 words performed better than articles under 1000 words, and that 85% of articles fell into the latter category.
There is room for improvement in content marketing. Luckily, a new trend has emerged to improve it: collective content marketing. In collective marketing, multiple creators work together, on their own time and in their own locations, to develop informative and detailed pieces of content. This approach can help brands take advantage of the room for improvement in their own content marketing efforts.
Two reasons content is redundant
Lack of time. The constant demand for new content means teams have little time to investigate new topics deeply. Writers do not have time to sit down with the company’s SMEs, engineers, designers, line workers, or front staff. And these workers also do not have time to chat with the marketing team every week. This hinders the production of detailed articles that answer the questions buyers most need answered.
Internet saturation. This might seem counterintuitive. The Internet is theoretically infinite. But over 200 streaming services now produce more new shows than anyone could ever watch. Companies and individuals now write more blog posts than anyone could ever read (over 70 million new posts every month on WordPress alone), and they are beginning to all sound the same. If everyone reaches for the low-hanging fruit, at some point the low-hanging fruit runs out and you can no longer say anything original without making a concerted effort.
Quality over quantity
Increasingly, the Internet will be dominated by quality content, instead of quantity of content. While quantity still has relevance, modern buyers want answers to their questions, or they want to learn something new. If you cannot provide that, they will go somewhere else.
In blogging and media, content creators are moving towards paywalls instead of running ads. Modern digital consumers are tired of ads and click-bait, willing to shell out for premium subscriptions even to avoid them altogether.
It goes without saying that people are more digitally savvy in 2021 than in 2011. They know how to find good content. They can quickly assess new content and decide to engage or ignore. Gone are the days when your business could impress people just by having a blog. Everybody seems to have have their own personal blogs (some better and more consistent at posting than many brands’ corporate blogs). To engage with a younger, digitally-smarter audience, you need to work harder to produce valuable content.
Collective content gives you both
Collective content creation gets rid of redundancy and takes advantage of the new digital landscape. When more people work together on an article, they can strengthen it with new ideas. They can add new information. Each new pair of eyes can improve the substance of a piece.
Creating collective content requires collaboration. This means that employees from diverse backgrounds within a company work together to produce more valuable content. The SMEs, engineers, and frontline employees are included in the actual content creation itself. Multiple creators with different perspectives work together to produce a single result. Gone are the days of 10-minute interviews with a SME or a member of the customer service department.
This approach will not only make your content stronger, it will entice your audience. People want to hear from the engineers, or the designers, or even the cashiers and clerks. They want diverse voices. By engaging with employees throughout your company, you are more likely to find the people who can actually solve your customers’ problems.
It also gives you both quality and quantity. It solves the lack-of-time issue. A team of individuals working separately has more time together to focus on a problem than any single individual working alone. Over the past year, people have learned to like working from home, at their own pace, on their own hours. Loose collaboration beats office meetings and groupthink. It beats siloed individuals working without input from their colleagues. Collective content is distributed: neither top-down, nor isolated.
Software teams have long embraced this style of working. Many teams operate in a remote, distributed fashion, coordinating via Slack. Yet they still produce a coherent product. If multiple engineers can collaborate to develop a single software program, multiple creators can collaborate to produce a single article. In fact, one survey from April 2020 found that 78% of marketing teams did not struggle with real-time collaboration, even with 90-100% of their teams working remotely. If teams can still collaborate well while working remotely, they are already on the way to adopting collective marketing.
Do not bore your audience with redundant and unhelpful articles. If you want to produce material rapidly while improving the quality of each piece, you need a collective approach to content creation. Collaboration allows creators with diverse tones, points of view, styles, and experiences to craft more interesting messages. It engages your audience by answering their questions and by teaching them new information. With collective marketing, your content will stay not only fresh, but relevant and insightful.
The upside to the current state of redundant content marketing is that there is room for improvement. By producing better articles and answering the questions your audience wants answered, you can improve your audience’s engagement. A collective approach can help your team put more time and more knowledge into each piece.