Social Content

Adidas-2010-FIFA-World-Cup-Match-Ball-jabulani-1 Have you been watching the World Cup? I'm a football fan, so I don't count, I would be watching anyway.

I could not help but notice, however, that since we can track conversations about #worldcup and the various teams on Twitter and other social networks, the chatter about the games has gone up compared to years past — and so has the number of people watching the games, especially in the US.

The conversation prompts us to want to know more about the games, so we get more engaged with them. In turn, this higher engagement prompts us to talk about what we watched, thus creating more conversation and comments. 

We still read and consume the information generated by official organizations like FIFA. However, now that we have more and more accessible tools, we like to engage with each other about that content.

Social content

The best kind of content you can have is a combination of what you
organize — mostly by building the context and providing something for people to do and a system to capture what they do and play it back for them — and what people contribute in comments, reactions, posts, etc.

Football is a social object. It also generates a good amount of content, on both sides of the conversation, and builds buzz in the process. The best content ends up being a combination of what FIFA is streaming, for example, and what fans everywhere are saying from their experience of the events.

Better than what the water cooler used to do. Because now you can share images and videos with your commentary of the games, post comments on discussion threads, link to posts and images that express what you feel, and so on.

Organizations need to embrace the matrix

Or as Eloqua named it, the grid


[click on image to enlarge]

This is a good step in the direction of cataloging content by degrees of social, type of opportunity for the business, as well as depth of data you get back. There is a reason why organizations use email, demos, widgets, webinars and now videos — these formats provide richer data back. In a scalable way, I'd add.

Yes, you could be listening on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. The reality is that as long as the data gathering is manual and needs to be stitched together to provide insights, there will be less of that, given the scarce resources and finite time. On the other hand, you might uncover opportunities in specialized niches through listening in two way networks.

According to Joe Chernov, the grid above is a simple framework for content — or “inbound” — marketing. That
is, it plots content type and distribution channel across two
dimensions: who should create it (a single owner or the entire staff)
and how it should be distributed for maximum impact on the sales funnel

Incidentally, Joe demonstrated that he does understand the social object concept in his outreach to me. We engaged in a fun and interesting conversation by email that had the grid as the excuse to get to know each other. And it worked, look at this post (are you looking, Eloqua?)

More than this

What you don't see in the grid are the relationships between types of content — how the triggers and calls to action work between channels and assets, as well as the insights the socialization brings back to the business, in addition to the data.

There's a lot of magic — arranged and socialized — in content integration. You can develop assets as breadcrumbs and complementary to each other. Offers that build on experiences, further information that people spread because it's useful.

The more part is that you need to start thinking about your content as the excuse for people to friend each other, not the other way around. Look at content as an opportunity to be part of the social experience.

To me, the grid needs a third dimension to express relationships — links maybe?


I plan to do lots building off this information. What do you plan to do?

Steal Eloqua's social media playbook here and get started.

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0 responses to “Social Content”

  1. It’s amazing how social has made the “brands as publishers” dreams of 2006 into a viable reality.
    That being said, I think we’re redefining the word “content” or at least changing it’s scope. Content used to be the brand’s creative output. Content is now the total communications dynamic.

  2. I’d wager that the relationships among pieces of content, the connective tissue that holds this crazy social web of ours together, are the most important part of…well…everything, really. Going further, the relationships WE have with content are a big part of the puzzle as well.
    I think you sum that up really nicely in this sentence:
    “The more part is that you need to start thinking about your content as the excuse for people to friend each other, not the other way around.”
    That right there shows just how seriously content is being taken now, which I love (being the content girl, of course). 🙂 Content is why we’re here, and I think it’s so engrained in our lives, so much a part of how we live, that we take it for granted.
    Great post, Valeria. 🙂

  3. @Jon – that was a very good insight. Content is the total communications dynamic. The whole losing control conversation is not about the fact that companies never had it, they did, or that they don’t anymore, they do. It’s how and where the experience is arranged that have changed.
    @Teresa – so we need to expand our idea of relationships and take knowledge flows and being in flow with it into account. Content is in fact what sets us apart while it connects us. Good thing you’re the content girl as you’ll get to experience this up close. Looking forward to seeing what you do to shape the conversation further.

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