When you think about content, what immediately pops into your head? For me, I think of videos. Whether that’s a movie, TV show, Youtube video. Any form of “moving picture” is what I think of when I hear content. Two hundred years ago, “moving pictures” didn’t exist, but content was still there. They had books and plays. We still have those now, but the mainstream view of content has become increasingly digital. Plays can now be considered “moving pictures” if you watch them through a screen; the same thing with books. “More tools, channels and platforms means more content than ever is being uploaded…” (firehead.net). With more and more ways to get content out there, content strategists need to adapt.
“Content marketing has seen a lot of changes during the past few years. Many of these changes can be attributed to the rapidly evolving search landscape, as well as a huge shift in the way people are actually discovering content” (blog.hubspot.com). A major problem that content strategists have to deal with is search engines. I’d say it’s safe to say that if you have internet access you use a search engine. Search engines are great. They help you find whatever you want with the click of a button. It would make sense that that would help content strategists, right? Wrong. It just makes life more difficult for them. “…depending on how and where you’re searching from, you’ll see different search results, which makes it difficult to evaluate success based on keyword rankings alone” (blog.hubspot.com). This makes it more difficult for a smaller company based in New Jersey to have their content seen by someone in California.
This challenges content strategists to adapt. If they don’t adapt, they risk losing their costumers to more user-friendly sites. For example, cell phones have become a huge place for content to be seen. Cell phones have gained internet access and friends and family can share videos or images or a website with each other via one simple text. The problem here lies within whether or not something is mobile friendly. No website was mobile-friendly when smartphones first came out.
Nowadays, if your content isn’t mobile-friendly, you’re probably going to lose your users. “Brands failing to drill down to this level and deliver adaptive experiences run the risk of customers abandoning their websites. In 2013, Netbiscuits research found that 76% of consumers will abandon a website if it’s not optimized for mobile browsing, while over 30% simply won’t bother trying to use a brand’s non-optimized site, or turn to a competitor instead” (wired.com).
Colman, Jonathon, et al. “A Brief History of Content Strategy.” Firehead, Firehead Digital Communications, 26 Mar. 2019, https://firehead.net/2013/06/a-brief-history-of-content-strategy/.
Daniel Weisbeck, Netbiscuits. “Context Is King – Long Live the King.” Wired, Wired, 7 Aug. 2015, https://www.wired.com/insights/2014/01/context-king-long-live-king/.
Howells-Barby, Matthew. “The Future of Content Strategy.” HubSpot Blog, HubSpot, 3 Oct. 2019, https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/content-marketing-strategy.