Five to ten years ago, every agency was calling themselves a “social” agency or an “engagement” agency. Now, the new buzzword on the block is “content” agency. While this is all good, any agency worth their weight in skinny jeans has been inherently doing this for years. However, the ears of brands and agencies are perking up as social networks are evolving their user experience to favor high-quality, visual content, and the search engines’ algorithms are favoring websites that curate high-quality content.
So, why (great) content matters:
- Google says so: The latest Penguin and Panda algorithm changes have made it clear that Google’s algorithm is favoring websites that curate quality content on a regular basis. For some, this may mean a blog, but for many brands this is an opportunity to change how your website represents your brand and your brand’s values. In order to stay at the top of the SERPs, your website will have to adapt.
- Pinterest proves it: As one of the fastest growing social networks to date, with one of the longest on-site times (on par with YouTube), Pinterest proves that users want show-stopping, visually stimulating content. The average Pinterest user spends somewhere around nine minutes on Pinterest per visit. With the growing number of pins, lack luster images just won’t cut through the clutter. And, if you’re wanting to leverage Pinterest to drive traffic to your brand’s website, that content better also come from your website.
- Facebook says so too: With the recent announcement of the upcoming revamp of the News Feed, one thing Facebook stressed was that there would be a larger emphasis on high-quality, visual content. As Facebook is looking to increase its ad dollars, this is no surprise that they want to give brands more real estate in the News Feed. By doing so, it can be inferred that they are also aiming to increase on-site time in the way Pinterest and YouTube have with images and videos. To potential advertisers, higher on-site time equals more brand engagement, which leads to more ad dollars spent. For brands, this also means they’re going to have to up their game to stand out in the News Feed. Yes, they will have larger real estate, but so will other brands.
The big picture is that brands are going to have to shift the way they look at the online channels and assets, and that content will have to be made a priority if they want to stay ahead. This may mean building new teams, enlisting new agencies, or shifting budgets, but content can no longer be an afterthought. On the contrary, content must be at the heart of everything your brand does.