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The Cynic’s Career in Content Strategy

The Cynic’s Career in Content Strategy

You’ll want to put the keyword in your first paragraph for SEO, mine is content strategy. Why is this important? So people can see your work. Below is an interview with Moby on why this is an unfortunate necessity for people in the music business, and now includes pretty much everyone. It’s a good one – they have one with Lena Dunham too.


Time: 4:30

What do most people want to progress in? Work, Fitness, Intelligence and their Sociability to bring joy into the lives of people they love.

Along the narrative of my own existential crisis, and ‘oh the humanity’, I find my development has very little to do with levitation, and more to do with the sucking-quality of a vacuum.

People might be looking to do better, but they end up walking in circles. So, how to avoid the circular cycle of viciously endearing advertisements that tell you, you’re worth it?

So here’s my ad-vice, you’ll want to look into cycling. Yes, cycling. It seems like a silly notion that a bicycle can fix all your problems, but believe me, it works.

You’ll be able to work out, feel like you’re moving forward, and you can tell that person you like that you have a hobby.

Besides the beauty of the wheels, you’ll want to look into the various other aspects of your life.

The Junk in the Trunk of Content Strategy

Personally, I work in social media, and online platforms. When doing this, the best way to track my progress is through keyword analysis, look at frequencies (sometimes I use NVivo – which gives you a 14-day free trial), and the number of links on the page. Of course, I also want to see that people laugh while reading, but that’s trickier to measure.

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When working in social media, and no matter what you’re doing, it will be an (in)-voluntary part of your life. With social media, you can look at ALL the monitoring softwares available. There’s loads of them, and they all have great features.

As for my theory on a content strategy. The strategy part comes with understanding your audience, which means doing customer analysis. If you don’t have the time, or statistical know-how, I suggest researching your competitors, and seeing the industry your company is in. Moving forward from this, you’ll want to look at specific approaches that the customer is doing i.e. are they experiential customers, or are they objective-oriented customers. You’ll also want to understand what the hell it is you’re trying to promote. I say promote because it’s a remote-control that will jam at critical moments if not continuously curated – which is different from sales, because of its contact-point nature.

A lot of companies ask for story-tellers. What does that mean exactly? This is where my experience, and theories can meet gaps that need bridging. Content Strategy is important because of who is actually seeing it. It’s not working if nobody’s hearing, seeing or touching it. So, reach out to understand what the hell the company is about i.e. history, future objectives, and all the processes between that. Every product has its own ‘story-line’, and you’ll want to use your pop-culture references to make it relatable, and relevant. Install the story into other stories.

Yes, yes, it’s an overwhelming amount of research. But, let me tell you a quick, very lame, but I promise, relatable story.

Easier to Please StoryLines

Fair Trade is an easier one because it’s linked to things related to organic food, healthy living, conservation and sustainable development. You can write a story about how you recycle, and it’ll be relevant to your own story-line.

The Active Lifestyle may be somewhat easier because of the visual aspect. I’m going to insist this is a relevant example:

The New York Times’ real-life report on a scary moment involving an Avalanche & skiing – you can see how the visual of it all makes it a lot more engaging: http://www.nytimes.com/projects/2012/snow-fall/#/?part=tunnel-creek

But how to create one, out of nowhere? For a company that hasn’t fully developed its own story-line. Look at Disney, look at NIVEA, look at P&G, look at Warner Bros, & so forth. Their content strategy is made up of creativity, and good story-lines, so you’ll want to look to these thought-leaders (as well as advertisers), to do this. Also Emakina, W+K, and other creative agencies are a good source of inspiration.

So your content strategy should be approached with two things in mind – how you write/illustrate/shoot, and what you produce. Companies will typically expect interviews, and experiences – those experiences need to be extrapolated onto different platforms. Interviews, accomplishments, employees etc. that’s the stuff you’ll need for certain companies.

Also, include the customers.

How is where the customer analysis comes in – should it be emotionally-driven (should it be positive), and what kind of information do you need?

The What of it All – Should it be fictional? Non-fictional? Here, I suggest that volume and quality can compensate for one another. You’ll want to keep your posts consistent for the strategy of remaining relevant to audiences as part of a content strategy, but if you have a quality post, put the lighter ones, and post the time-taking posts.

Hopefully, during this process, you find something that can be exceptional, and post something that resonates with a wider audience. If you take the time to do this, it’ll be aligned with the company, and hopefully align with something beyond the horizon of for-profit marketing. I hope this helps with your content strategy, and strange wandering through a vaguely meaningful landscape.

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