"The Emperor Has No News" - Sioux Falls Content Strategy Group, October 2011


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Deane Barker presented his thoughts on the viability of company news feeds to the Sioux Falls Content Strategy group.

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"The Emperor Has No News" - Sioux Falls Content Strategy Group, October 2011

  1. 1. The Emperor Has No News The Future of the Corporate News Feed
  2. 2. “We’re gonna update it, Daddy.”
  3. 3. We’re at an odd point in thehistory of marketing where brands can talk to us.
  4. 4. The concept of a post-purchaserelationship with a customer is quite novel.
  5. 5. Relationship Starters!  Purchased digital content that required an account!  “Liked” them on Facebook!  Tweeted about them!  Registered at their website
  6. 6. What should/can brands “say” to make us buy more of their products?
  7. 7. Question #1How is news different from other content?
  8. 8. Question #2How effective is news content?
  9. 9. Question #3How can news content be made more effective?
  10. 10. News as opposed to…!  Reference content!  Branding/lifestyle content
  11. 11. News vs. Reference Content!  Reference content generally has no time sensitivity!  Reference content is pulled, news content is pushed.!  Reference content is generally known-item searching – it’s not usually browsed
  12. 12. News vs. Branding Content!  Branding content is meant to drive home an impression of a brand!  Imparting actual information about an organization is secondary!  More advertising, less news
  13. 13. Key Differences of News Content!  Time horizon!  Information architecture!  Delivery!  Intent
  14. 14. Time Horizon
  15. 15. Time Horizon!  Temporal vs. Eternal!  Post vs. Page!  Blog vs. Wiki!  Dynamic vs. Static!  Chronological vs. Permanent
  16. 16. CNN Wikipedia
  17. 17. “With Wikipedia, you’re not seeing aseries of posted items. You’re seeing a single body of information, continually updated and groomed.Thus, the basic information stays right where it’s easy to see. Wikis are more ‘speak to me like I know nothing’ information, rather than ‘tell me the very latest nuance’ information.”
  18. 18. Time Horizon!  News is generally tied to some moment in time.!  It either follows or precedes an event.!  After the moment has passed, does news have any value? !  Is the event of any historical importance?
  19. 19. Information Architecture
  20. 20. Information Architecture!  News content is not “placed”!  It’s generally subject to two large groupings: !  Date !  Topic
  21. 21. !  Pages have an intentional relationship to the pages “around” them.
  22. 22. !  News items have no “spatial” relationship with other content.!  Only relationships: !  Time !  Topic
  23. 23. Delivery
  24. 24. Push or Pull?
  25. 25. Pull?!  Very few people browse news feeds!  Any searching of news feeds is generally known-item searching!  Posting news items to a news feed is helpful as a link target
  26. 26. Push!  To the general public, news content is pushed, rather than pulled!  Users know that reference content is there, so they go looking for it – known-item searching.!  They don’t know news content exists, and it’s temporal, not permanent.
  27. 27. Problem:Pushing news dilutes your analytics.
  28. 28. Solution:Push notifications which drive users to pull from a single location.
  29. 29. Drive traffic to a central point
  30. 30. Intent
  31. 31. The Big Eight!  To Inform!  To Impress!  To Associate!  To Introduce or Elaborate!  To Recount, Then Position!  To Educate, Then Position!  To Comply!  To Magnify
  32. 32. To Inform!  Promote an event the consumer might want to be involved with!  Recount an event the consumer might not have been involved with
  33. 33. To Impress!  To demonstrate some level of momentum!  “Top of mind awareness”!  “Forget me not”
  34. 34. The audience is often thepress or financial analysts.
  35. 35. To Associate!  Associate the organization with another that might be held in esteem
  36. 36. To Introduce or Elaborate!  Explain services and offerings from the organization that the consumer might not be aware of!  New product announcements
  37. 37. To Influence!  Official position on a government decision or external event
  38. 38. To Recount, Then Position!  Tell a story of a particular event and then position the organization’s utility to this event!  “Case Study”
  39. 39. To Educate, Then Position!  Announce a statistic, then position the organization’s response!  Traditionally the domain of white papers!  Oftentimes they maintain a veneer of neutrality
  40. 40. To Comply!  Required announcements
  41. 41. To Magnify!  Our organization “in the news”
  42. 42. How do we make news better? Painful Facts and Key Questions
  43. 43. Painful Fact #1 Almost* no one is going tobrowse the news on your website through sheer interest.
  44. 44. Painful Fact #2A majority of news is posted out of a sense of obligation or routine, with no larger goal or plan of action.
  45. 45. Painful Fact #3 News that is not proactivelytargeted to an audience and then pushed onto that audience is probably wasted.
  46. 46. Key Question #1Who is the audience for this news item?
  47. 47. Something is only“newsworthy”in the contextof an audience.
  48. 48. Key Question #2How is my audience going to find out about this news?
  49. 49. News that isn’t pushed, is news that is wasted.
  50. 50. Key Question #3What do I want this audience todo because of this news item?
  51. 51. The Big Eight!  To Inform!  To Impress!  To Associate!  To Introduce or Elaborate!  To Recount, Then Position!  To Educate, Then Position!  To Comply!  To Magnify
  52. 52. Goals!  Attend an event!  Know about a product or service offering!  Develop a sense of urgency about their circumstances!  Think more highly of my brand
  53. 53. Key Question #4What steps have I taken to enablemy audience to achieve my goal?
  54. 54. What is the call to action?
  55. 55. 1. Who is the audience?!  Current clients!  Prospective clients!  Prospective employees!  Local press
  56. 56. 2. What is the goal?!  To Impress: !  Blend is growing and therefore needs more staff to keep up with demand!  To Inform: !  Be aware that Blend now has increased capacity and can engage more work
  57. 57. 3. How is it pushed?!  RSS! Facebook!  Twitter!  Pushed to Silicon Prairie News!  Companion press release to Argus Leader
  58. 58. 4. What is my call to action?!  There was none.!  It could have been: !  Visit their new profile pages !  Contact Blend to see how we can use this new capacity for your benefit !  Apply at Blend
  59. 59. News has to become lessobligatory, more purposeful.
  60. 60. The End(FYI: You made it through 85 slides.)