Susi Castle

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Content, what content?

Content: likeable apart from the label

I haven’t tried the Buffer app yet because I like to take my time to look around and research a little before I pour time into building up a profile, integrating everything including the contents of my fridge and then finding out the interesting new piece of technology I’ve just got excited over… was actually on a FREE 30 day trial! and I’ll now have to pay £39.99 to use it for the rest of the year. Not that that’s Buffer. That’s just me being a little suspicious.

My suspicion in this case is probably totally unjustified if their newsletter is anything to go by. I’ve only been a subscriber for a few weeks and already a ton of interesting articles have come my way. Today’s newsletter was a bookmarking/Twitter following/Pocket-adding feast.

Since starting in the industry one of the things I have enjoyed the most has been the opportunity to immerse myself totally in a new field and research the hell out of something I’ve never encountered before. I doubt there are many jobs out there where you get to explore new worlds in the same way. Astronauts get to. And anthropologists. But they have to worry about getting enough oxygen and ancient diseases making a come-back, so I think I’ll stick to Account Executiving for now.

What I haven’t enjoyed is the word ‘content’. If content is a big, important word, than authenticity is surely another one that pops up all over these. We’re all looking for authenticity in our big, connected, totally anonymous, uncaring world. And what we really want is authentic content. But there’s something about the word ‘content’ that strips out all authenticity for me. The contents of the content probably are all authentic. Ish. But ‘content’? Ugh. I feel like it reduces down everything you’re creating down to the sum of its parts. The content I’ve come across already in my short time in this position has been interesting and thoughtful and well-crafted. I just wish we didn’t have to call it that. But whatever we would end up calling it would be just as bad.

So, content, what content? The content that got me thinking today is the shocking! kind. More specifically, the kind recommended by Avtar Ram Singh in his latest article on the Buffer blog. He talked about getting hooked on Mark Schaefer‘s blogging based on Schaefer’s controversial argument that content marketing is doomed to fail as we reach a saturation point. Having only just stumbled across this argument (some eight months after it was published) I’m not saying anything new. But what struck me was that with all the effort to create unique, share-worthy and substantial content in order to be liked by Google’s zoo, it is incredibly hard to get away from this fresh content model. Businesses, bloggers and the online community work hard at SEO and part of that work is creating quality content – what’s next after ‘content shock’ hits?

Well, once I’ve reached Schaefer’s further reading link, I’ll be able to tell you (or you could just skip ahead for all the answers).