We've all heard the phrase, “Content is king."
On recent panels that I have participated in, this expression is constantly thrown around in different instances to describe how that person views the relationship between good content, and how that relates to the marketing success of a brand or branded entertainment.
For example, at the Williamsburg Film Festival, Larry Banks, chairman of Film and Media at Long Island University, said that he disagreed with that statement, and felt that "Context is king."
Then during Social Media Week in NY, "Social Steve" Goldner said that "Conversation is king!"
OK, so which one is it?
It's not that simple...it never is.
I posed that very question to Barry Diller at South by Southwest (#SXSW) recently. His answer: “None of them are king.” I agree...In essence, they all need to work together. There has been a lot of recent chatter about his thoughts online in the days following this conference on this topic.
In fact, I’ll go one step further and say that I think all three of these together epitomize the Royal Family: Content is King, Context is the Queen (if you will) and Conversation is the Prince (next in line to succeed to the throne).
The home run really starts with storytelling (a.k.a. The Content). It must be done well, with a beginning, middle and an ending along with character development, and a message that resonates with human emotions. And that could take on many different forms, from the user generated home video of "cat laser bowling," to a professionally shot reality-style hidden camera, like the work my company recently did called the "Coke Happiness Machine," or to aultra high-end cinematic stylepiece, like Nike's "Black Mamba."
Then you need to communicate that storytelling (a.k.a. The Context). More and more it's the user experience and the distribution method that gets your great content viewed the most. TubeMogul reported that more than 80% of discovered video comes from blogs that people regularly visit.
But much like the proverbial tree falling in the woods, if you didn't see it, did it really happen? That's where the conversation comes in to play. Context may make content relevant, but the conversation makes it popular, and after all, isn't it better to look good than to feel good?
The conversation could happen at the water cooler but more often than not it's happening on social media. Facebook, Twitter, mentions on check-ins, whatever...when people talk about it, then there is true reach, frequency, and relevance...and when they share it, there is amplified reach.
The two most important words there are Reach and Frequency.
"Give me Reach and Frequency, or give me death."
A well planned ad campaign, a film, a TV show, new or old media, all need to embrace this "Royal Family."
But at the end of the day, aren’t we are still talking about something that needs to be in context to be relevant? And if it's good, it will get talked about in conversation.
Wait a minute...that's content!
Ok, I guess it is that simple....
I hope I cleared it all up for you.
Frank Radice serves as Expert-In-Residence for Definition 6. As Expert-In-Residence, Frank advises Definition 6 leadership and clients on marketing strategy and issues pertinent to the evolution and transformation of the broadcasting & cable industry. He can be reached at Frank.Radice@definition6.com.
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