There's a silver lining in the dark clouds that are hanging over the media business. After a few years where blogging, vlogging, tweeting, and facebook posts threatened to shift all media to 140 characters (or less) it appears there is in fact a market for - writing!
Writing, it turns out, isn't made a bit easier by all the various tools and platforms.
Creating thoughtful, interesting and compelling narratives takes both time and talent.
This is good news on a number of fronts. First of all, it means that for all the hand-wringing about Twitter making everything bite-sized and short-attention-span oriented, the actual emerging behavior is that these referral filters point to actual writing. And, for folks who've been struggling to write or blog or create content, there is an emerging role for them to find, sort and recommend content. To 'curate' but not necessarily to create.
So writers, time to pick up your pencils.
Now is the time to start to build your brand, learn how to market your writing - and test the subjects, length and appropriate place to put your writing so that it gets paid for, read and helps grow your franchise.
But the good news is, writing still matters and it will more and more.
Let's review what writing is (and isn't).
Writing is the ability to take complex, often somewhat disjointed information and ideas and weave them into a journey that compels a reader to understand complexity. In fact, delivering complexity in an entertaining package gets harder to do well as the world gets more complex and noisier.
Good news for talented writers.
At the same time, the explosion in distribution mechanisms is such that writers now need to be publishers, marketers, promoters, even retailers of their work. No longer can a writer expect that media outlets will do the heavy lifting. Whether on a masthead, or on their own blog, the need to publish, repurpose and cross promote is now essential. Finding the right way to get information to its intended target is critical.
Increasingly there's a divide between the workman-like efforts of people who find, organize, and reformat text and the people who are creating original content. Knowing which one you are and understanding where the value is will be critical for writers who don't want to be marginalized or replaced by outsourced, offshore, low-cost text shops.
So - 5 Things You Want To Be As A Writer
Distinctive. Having a point of view, a voice, a signature - a discernible place in the content whirlwind
Timely. Speed is critical. Being in the conversation matters. Leading the conversation wins.
Built to Fit. Being able to write fast and to the point for Twitter, etc - and then expand to longer formats for blogs, op eds, think pieces etc.
Find The Right Venue(s). If you're a good writer, you probably have a number of places were your work belongs. Don't make the mistake of having a single outlet. Write for multiple places, with various focuses and voices.
Don't Whine. Yes, there's a lot of change, things are moving fast, and it's hard to get valued at what you're worth. But content that matters and has impact will get you paid. Whining doesn't help.
Theses are good times for content makers. The future is coming to you. Institutions that used to be pipes are forced to rethink their role, and embrace high-quality content as well as new curation and UGV solutions to be useful and pertinent in the years ahead.
So, pencils ready? Go!
Steven Rosenbaum is the CEO and Co-Founder of Magnify.net - a fast-growing video publishing platform that powers more than 50,000 web sites, media companies, and content entrepreneurs to aggregate and curate web video from a wide variety of web sources. Currently Magnify.net publishes over 50,000 channels of Curated-Consumer Video, and is working closely with a wide variety of media makers, communities, and publishers in evolving their content offerings to include content created by, sorted and reviewed by community members. Rosenbaum is a serial entrepreneur, Emmy Award winning documentary filmmaker, and well known innovator in the field of user-generated media production. Rosenbaum Directed and Executive Produced the critically acclaimed 7 Days In September, and his MTV Series Unfiltered is widely regarding as the first commercial use of Consumer Generated Video in US mass media. Steve can be contacted at email@example.com Follow Steve Rosenbaum on Twitter: www.twitter.com/magnify
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