Content is (Still) King
We get asked a lot about how businesses can grow their social media following, improve their SEO, and strengthen their brand reputation, and if you’ve ever had to listen to our answer, it’s always the same: content is king.
But what does that mean and how does content truly help?
Let’s first examine where the phrase “content is king” comes from. In 1996, Microsoft founder Bill Gates published an essay titled “Content is King” which outlined his thoughts on how people would generate revenue on the internet. He posited that businesses that used the internet to deliver information and entertainment (otherwise known as content) would have the best long-term financial success.
Gates also suggested that internet users would demand more than just plain information; they would require information that was “deep and extremely up-to-date that they can explore at will.” His mid-90s essay also noted that audio and video would be key forms of content needed in the future and that businesses would need to create content that provided users with the opportunity for personal involvement.
More than two decades later, Gates’ words hold up as companies like Microsoft, Netflix, and Amazon headline the global conglomerates who have used the internet as their information highway to generate billions of dollars in revenue.
But how do companies like Microsoft, Netflix, and Amazon continue to have so much success 24 years after Gates first published his theoretical essay? The answer is simple: content is still king.
When people turn to the internet for information or entertainment, they’re looking for a selection of content that’s easy to consume, extremely interactive, and of the highest quality.
Note the use of “selection of content” in the previous sentence. Humans love decision making—or at least the illusion of being given a choice. It is not enough for the internet to include high-quality, extremely interactive content, but users must be able to choose where they want to engage with that content.
Take this blog post for example. There are thousands (if not millions) of blogs and articles on the internet containing the phrase “content is king.” So what led you to this specific blog post in the marketplace of content?
Some of you probably know me. But for those of you who don’t, think about how and why you chose to read this blog entry. How did you find the blog URL? What made this blog headline stand out from the others? What were you hoping to get from this content? These are the types of questions you need to be asking yourself when you’re crafting content for your own businesses.
The first step in getting people interested in your business is to provide them with good content. After that provide them with more good content. Then when you feel like you’ve really captured them, provide them with even more good content.
People crave high-quality content, and by routinely publishing accessible, engaging, and memorable information and entertainment on the internet, you’re setting yourself up to grow a following of users who regularly visit your website, pay for your products and services, and advocate on your behalf.