• Ryan Haynes

Content in 2020 - what is it?

What is the role of content as we enter a new decade....do we really understand why we're doing it?


Content is king - no it's a vehicle...



Content is just a channel in which to communicate your key aim. Look at the infiltration of fake news but does anyone consider what lies beyond it? It's a message, there's a narrative which evolves with time. No book discourages you from turning a page, so why is a social media post a unique individual statement. It's part of the wider message!


For technology providers, in a world of restricted digital skills and outdated education their role should be of support. To build trust and relationships with customers to optimise the performance of their organisation. Content becomes a vehicle in which to educate and inform, teach the user to be confident to depend on the technology for the best of their business.


For politics it could be encouraging belief in a particular societal approach, through videos, social media, blogs and photos all playing a part in delivering that narrative towards what they want the audience to believe.


Strategically content gives you access to the wider market, but this content needs to be accessible across all communications channels, both off and online, internal and external. Only once you do that can you influence the wider agenda.


What your sales team say on the phone reflects the narrative you are sharing online. These physical and digital interactions allow the customer to see the three dimensions of the relationships.


The customer, the provider and the returns. For we all profit if we consider one another's profits.


The bottle = the medium, the water = channel, the paper = the content, the word = the message!

Linguistic meaning of content - To be something of value;

  • Adjective - content: pleased with the situation : are your customers enjoying what information you provide them?

  • Noun - content: contained within something: do your customers feel they gain value from your content?

  • Verb - to make someone content: are your customers happy and confident with their investment?



Longevity of a message

There's a time and a place before a message exhausts. It needs to evolve and transform to maintain the attention and more importantly achieve a driving direction for customers. Where is the narrative going, what's the next stage and what does it mean for everyone involved?


Politically and economically we need to address these questions - take Brexit, well what happens after? No-one knows and this is now playing centre stage, the journey to Brexit is not done, we've now reached a new dimension and the narrative needs to adapt for what happens next.


Thomas Cook is a clear warning that industry is changing, the way of doing business is adapting quickly and the standards are not yet in place, the narrative is no longer about disruption but about stabilisation, it's about how we achieve the potential.


The world is changing and in the last twenty years we are seeing a cyclical effect as the old structures of 1990s are beginning to reemerge; the times when you had to pay to read the newspapers except now it's subscriptions or donations, you had to pay to watch digital/sky TV with (oh wait...) on-demand tv subscriptions (Netflix/Amazon video/Apple TV), and publications are gate-walling their content with pay to play. Even events have had to compensate their loss for sponsored content.


Marketing becomes less about producing content but more about the channels in which to place it and how to evolve the narrative to clearly drive the key message.


Today's content is no different to the brand, is it content I trust, believe in, connect with, engage with. What is that content communicating and how well is it connecting with new stakeholders. When considering your content strategy, consider your business goals - how do you attract the right talent if you don't share content that captures the interest of new talented recruits? How do you get the funding if investors don't get your narrative?



Concepts have had a good run, and with the surge of Unicorns businesses will either strive for growth or profit. Content won't rule, it's the soldiers of your message!


So choose your message wisely - to make sure it rules well.


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