How did you feel when you sat down this morning and switched on your computer? Dozens of emails, hundreds of tweets, updates, newsletters, offers. We’re under siege from content these days, and we ignore most of it. My morning routine is ‘delete,’ ‘delete,’ ‘delete.’
If we’re all feeling like this, is there any point in creating more content? What kind of content actually does get read, and acted upon?
The content I read
For me, the lists of emails I open and the content I actively read goes something like this:
- Emails from friends and colleagues. If they send me a link, I’ll usually open it. They know me, and they’ve got my best interests at heart. (Unless I see a very long addressee list, that is, and then I might assume it’s okay to ignore it. Not specifically sent to me, and I figure it’s probably safe to skip.)
- Content I’m looking for myself. This week it’s tips on ‘how to do presentations’ that I’m after. However if you’d sent me this two months ago (before I knew I was doing a presentation) I would probably have deleted it, and been a bit cross with you for sending it me. Timing is everything.
- Links on Tweets or Facebook pages from people I trust – to make me laugh, or think, or because they’re usually interesting or thought provoking so worth a click. There are a few people who I always want to read – because they’re leaders in my field, and they’re consistently good value. These people can get away with not including intriguing headlines – just their name and picture is enough to pique my interest.
- Good headlines. It might be something topical, something funny, something completely random that catches my eye. Pot luck tweets can sometimes be the start of a great Twitter relationship.
The content we all crave
We are awash with content, so much so that we willfully ignore most of it. But what I, and I believe many people will always seek is:
- Connection – real conversations, valued relationships
- Learning – to be better at what we do
- Feeling – to smile, to laugh, to be moved – we want to feel alive
So don’t just create content that adds to the pile of stuff nobody wants to read. Create content that helps, connects and entertains your particular group of clients. For god’s sake make it valuable.