Bright Lights Big City…NYC – it beckons hope, energy and creativity. I remember arriving for my first big job at NASDAQ -I felt like I could do any & everything with hard work, tenacity and a great resume. Some years later I started a small home-based business which grew considerably in the first 6 months and I was pleased with its progress. But then after the first full year, it just…leveled off. Not down, not up – just…STAGNANT. Leveraging those experiences, I now assist new & ever-growing companies with their content strategies as well as those stuck in their own quagmire of stagnant content on their website and branding materials. As a result, the lessons I learned about the success & initially unnoticed failures have helped me help others avoid the quicksand.
We all start out the gate at top speed – shooting on all 4 cannons with creativity, hutzpah and the excitement that surges like the jumbotron in Times Square. But knowing that as any business grows, you need to keep focused on consistent evolution in both your business model and the content on your website & marketing materials. In the Reinvent Your Content series, I will highlight some of the key elements worthy of consideration, to move your content (and business) forward on a consistent basis so that as time, Social Media and technology evolves, you will be on board with progressive motion.
Realize Stagnation When You See It~ Pond Scum…Ouch! Now I would never refer to the content on anyone’s website or marketing materials in such a tasteless manner. However, a business website can’t just put some stellar content on there and think thats it! I’m all set – ready to grow like eBay’s IPO. Even if you have William Faulkner-like skills when it comes to writing (or employing someone who does), one go around the bend will not be enough to reflect a business/company that is evolving with the times & technology. Fresh content on a regular basis is an ABSOLUTE MUST and that’s not always easy to get across to clients who are happy with the work you’ve done the first time around. When we think about the success of let’s say Apple (dare we?),we all acknowledge that Steve Jobs was nothing short of sheer genius-bubbling with overflowing creativity & endless ideas. But it was his appetite for constant evolution and challenging his whole company to make Apple products better, faster with seemingly limitless capabilities. It is this tenacity that consistently kept (and continues to keep) the company wow’ing the consumer while driving sales to unprecedented heights. So the moral here is to know that your content MUST GROW, EVOLVE & MORPH to keep the attention and business of your consumers.
Trial, Error & Rebuilding~ Most people are familiar with the word “troubleshooting” and many understand it in the context of problem recognition & solution. The same approach should be taken when looking at your business, it’s success or lack thereof. If your client base is not growing (or your profit margin), if client retention is an issue, or if sales are stationary, these are all red flags that require some assessment, realigning your goals and then plan implementation to chart your business boat in a new direction. A quote from my own business & life philosophy = There’s no shame in failing – the shame is when you recognize it but don’t react to it. And remember, data never lies. Want to know if your content strategies are working? Just look at your analytics, ROI and how many new customers you’ve gained in the last 6 months. There’s nothing wrong with scrapping the old, trying the new and testing the waters accordingly. Not every piece or facet of content works all the time. Be willing to find out if its working or not, go back to the drawing board to figure out why and jump in the think tank to come up with creative ways to solve the issues. This is where your pull from your team resources, be willing to hear multiple ideas and put the best ones into play.
“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”
Join me in the discussion by commenting on this blog and letting me know how you reinvent your content or would like to.