It’s the Distribution, Stupid


distributionlottery

Create it and they will not come. They will not come by the boatload.

I guarantee it.

Posting digital content and thinking the legions will flock to it doesn’t happen anymore – if it ever did. That’s why every brand needs a content distribution strategy now more than ever.

Because content without an audience is useless content.

Oh, there are exceptions that prove the rule. Awesome content does get noticed and go viral. But, quite frankly, so does bad content. Viral is like catching lightning in a bottle. You want to do everything you can to give your content a chance to go viral – but you can’t rely on it.

Relying on going viral to reach an audience is like relying on lottery tickets for a salary.

Luck is not a content strategy.

The Internet is crowded. Literally bursting with content.

  • 6 billion hours of video is watched on YouTube every month
  • 54 million brand pages have been created on Facebook
  • About 3 million blog posts are written each day

All of this content is competing for attention. Pushing and shoving, elbowing and kicking. Look at me! Read me! Share me! I’m not like the others. I’m special! I’m different!

It’s crucial to have a smart strategy to get your content to the right people. To get it seen and noticed.

And that isn’t as easy as it used to be. The best way used to be developing a plan that incorporated owned, earned and paid channels. Owned is pushing out content on channels the content creator controls: websites, blogs, Facebook pages, tweets, etc. Earned was pitching media and bloggers the content to see if they’d be interested in using it or sharing it. Paid was buying advertising to drive people to the content.

A strong mix of all three was the best way to distribute content.

It still is, but paradigm has shifted. There are no neat owned, earned and paid buckets anymore. In fact, paid now runs across every content distribution plan. Owned channels like Facebook require a paid component now. If you don’t pay you don’t get reach. Media companies, especially bloggers, insist on being paid. Native advertising is exploding.

There are also new digital distribution companies that specialize in paid approaches. Companies like OutBrain, Viral Gains and Taboola. They have partnerships with media companies that can deliver targeted views and broaden your audiences.

Distribution is now a sophisticated discipline. Brands should be thinking about their audience and how to reach them even as they create the content. Engagement should be built right in to help the distribution, especially the sharing.

Because without a distribution plan you’re just playing the lottery.

Links:

7 Ways to Pay for Play (via CustomerThink)

Make 2014 the Year of Distribution (via AdKnowledge)

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Lindsay Olson » Earned, Owned…and Paid? It’s all Part of PR - April 1, 2014

    […] to Snell, the key to getting your message heard is building the right distribution plan. And, while the paid opportunities you pursue might include creating an ad for a social network, […]

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