The best storytelling... "expose[s] real struggles" and "passionately-held beliefs about how to solve them.” I call it “Invested Storytelling,” content that conveys the substance and commitment arrived at through thought leadership goals that are defined by customer concerns.
I recently posted about Nicholas Taleb’s book Antifragility: Things that Gain from Disorder. My focus was on projects, in the context of Taleb’s idea that we have “more nonlinearities – asymmetries, convexities – in today’s world” resulting in “…an asymmetry in the way errors hit you…”
If you’re interested in Taleb’s theory of fragile and antifragile and the ways in which some things/people/systems benefit from stability while others benefit from change and or volatility, see Don Peppers’ August 2, 2013 article on LinkedIn – “Is Your Business Fragile? Or Antifragile?”
It’s a clearly written and accessible explanation of Taleb’s basic argument (along with a pretty fair critique of his eccentric writing style).
By Jinnean Barnard
The Twittersphere perked up this morning with the news of Loblaw (a Canadian grocery chain, which also owns hip clothier Joe Fresh) buying Shoppers Drug Mart, a popular Canadian drug store chain.
Positioned as being about speed and convenience in the urban market, Twitter observers are describing the merger as a “brilliant tactical move” (@tweetsbykate88) and a “good marriage” (@judymclarty).
But the biggest question is, will this mean “Memories of… my Optimum points?”
The answer is most likely a resounding NO.
As the Globe and Mail points out in today’s paper (July 15, 2013):
"Shoppers has one of the most well-developed loyalty programs in Canada. Loblaw will now have access to reams of data about the buying habits of millions of Shoppers Optimum members, helping the retailer to get to know, and market itself more effectively to, people in the urban centres where it has so far trailed in growth."
So, this marriage will likely produce a broader loyalty program and shared products. And, as long as prices don’t rise, it’s a great way for consumers to score points and Loblaw to harvest data.
By Jinnean Barnard
Commenting on the recent trend at a variety of corporations, publishers and PR firms to hire Chief Content officers, digital advertising/media analyst Rebecca Lieb asks what skill sets will be the most desirable in “the next crop of content hires.”
Until recently, she points out, the mantra has been “hire a reporter,” as organizations looked for people to blog or write for social media.
But while blogging remains, the content marketing arena has changed. As Lieb says, “…content strategies are more technologically complex and digitally convoluted (converged media, native advertising, video, mobile) than ‘just writing’.” PR firms are duking it out with agencies -- Lieb quotes a PR exec who calls it a ‘dogfight’ -- to provide content while brands themselves have stepped into the publishing fray.
So what are the skill sets? And where do you find those people?
Journalists will still have a role. But sophisticated content executions on multiple platforms are, frankly, major campaigns. They require a mix of writers – journalists and also copywriters whose storytelling is influenced by marketing know-how and the ability to create an emotional connection – and a slew of other specialists: writer/art director pairs who create concepts for video as well as infographics, SlideShare presentations, Prezis and whatever new visual storytelling media make their appearance; developers who can take content and make it work on digital publishing systems for mobile and tablets; community managers who can leverage the campaign in social media; media folk who can plan innovative methods of distribution; and strategists and planners – along with the Chief Content Officer – who figure the whole thing out.
While ad agencies, PR firms, content shops and corporations jostle to provide the best content, it’s clear that the skill set needed has widened: it's no longer enough to shout, “hire a reporter,” the call is to “hire a team.”
Note: I've quoted Rebecca Lieb's article, "6 developing trends in content marketing" published on imediaconnection.com on April 09, 2013.