In his industry-rocking book, "The New Rules of Marketing & PR," David Meerman Scott shares this insight: "Anybody who wants to be the leader has to have news coming out." Or information. Regardless of whether you create a continuous stream of news about your company or industry, or whether you write a ton of feature articles and blog posts, the important thing is that you create a continuous stream of content. The validation is that it isn't merely creating content for content's sake. You do this to drive your business forward and gain leadership in your niche.
How Does Content Help Your Brand?
To get people to read and value the blog posts and news items you publish in your blog or on your website, it must offer something of value. There needs to be something in it for them. In essence you are giving away information - for FREE! This act of generosity does offer important, though maybe intangible, benefits to your brand or business.
The first step for your business to succeed is to make your target markets aware that your brand even exists. "If you build it, they will come," may be the most memorable line from the movie, "Field of Dreams," but it hardly ever is the case in the wide-awake world of business. Great content gets you noticed by the search engines and attracts human readers. Create a torrent of great content and soon you may have a torrent of prospects checking out your brand.
Relevance or Value
Kevin Kelly was one of the founders and the first executive editor of the iconic Wired magazine. He also wrote several books about technology and culture, many of which he made available for FREE via the web. By giving away his work, he was able to reach a wider audience. People also perceived him as an important and relevant contributor to the field of digital culture. Now imagine yourself in place of Kevin Kelly. Then imagine that you've shared all your expertise and your wisdom in the area where you have positioned your brand. Goose bumps!
Some researchers in the Netherlands have discovered that half-empty grocery shelves actually get people to buy. Shoppers seem to think that if the product is in such high demand then it must be very good. The same phenomenon happens in clubs and restaurants, where people are willing to endure long queues because they seem to think that the long lines are indicative of how hot the establishment is. It's called the "bandwagon effect," and it plays a role in how people perceive your brand. The busier your site appears, the more intrigued visitors are by your brand.
What Content Do You Need to Create?
If you were blogging for the pure pleasure of it, then the answer would be "whatever you want." But presumably you are blogging to become the undisputed leader in your field of business, whatever your business may be. And whatever your brand may be about, always create content that your audiences will find useful and actionable.
Things like tips and tricks are always handy, and answers to important questions that your customers may have are always good for your audiences. Explaining what your products do very well, or illustrating how they may solve problems that dog your readers are content topics that do very well. You can also make your mark as a reliable source of information by providing news and insights about your industry.