I recently had the chance to hear Bob McGinn speak. Bob is a reporter who has been covering the Green Bay Packers for nearly 30 years. Now, if you’re like most people in Wisconsin, you probably think this was a great opportunity. I however had no idea who Bob was. For me, the sports section is that part of the newspaper that makes it more difficult for me to get to the business section. Let’s just say I was not exactly excited to hear Bob speak. I thought he’d just spout statistics and I’d feel like he was delivering a lecture in Greek or something.
Boy, was I wrong! Sure Bob shared some statistics. And rattled off the names of a bunch of football players I’m supposed to have heard of. But he also pointed out how his approach to writing about the Packers is exactly like what a good content marketer does.
Bob tries to be original. There are lots of reporters covering the Packers and they’re all covering the same game. He tries to find a new approach to what he has to say so that his column is a little different and therefore, worth reading. How do you work to make your approach to sharing information different from your competitors?
He works at learning about the game. Bob admits he watches a lot of tape. He asks a ton of questions. While Bob may not actually play the game, he feels that he is doing a disservice to his readers if he isn’t well informed. So he works at understanding what’s going on both on and off the field. Do you keep up with your industry? How many blogs, articles, or books do you read? Do you attend seminars? Are you open to new ideas?
He works with experts. Bob is not a football player (see above), a coach, or a scout. He knows that there are some things he just can’t understand because he’s not part of the team. So he enlists the help of others to make sure he’s got his facts straight and that he’s sharing good information. It’s okay to admit you don’t know everything. You don’t have to know everything, you just have to figure out who to ask.
Whether you’re writing about sports, accounting, or a nonprofit cause, you can learn from Bob’s approach. Content marketing is the most important strategy you can implement in today’s digital age. But your content must be good to work. If you work at being original, understanding your industry, and aren’t afraid to bring in an expert or two, you too can succeed at content marketing.
Christina Steder is the President of Clear Verve Marketing and works with clients to plan, create and execute marketing campaigns. Follow her on Twitter as @clearverve.