Brands, companies, and individuals — I think it’s time for some real-talk about content and social media.
Gary Vaynerchuk recently gave an interview about his decision to employ a full-time stalker (a.k.a “content person”) to chronicle, translate, and transcribe his every movement and remark into micro-content for various social media.
While I respect Vaynerchuk’s incredible success and agree with his sentiment that micro-content and content in general is incredibly important to the future of business, I question whether encouraging brands and companies to develop this type of content is really what leaders in the social world should be doing.
This massively successful Slideshare presentation speaks to the already overwhelming amount of useless content we experience on a day to day basis. It states that “the single greatest threat to content marketing is content marketing.” The deluge of shoddy, slapped-together content and micro-content that content shops, farms, and agencies are churning out in an attempt to keep up with the growing desire for more and more media is actually what is making us (the collective number of people “listening”) numb to content of quality.
I’m beginning to notice a “content double-take,” where readers are so glazed over scrolling through endless LOLcat updates and tweets about food that they almost (or sadly, sometimes do) miss an incredibly important piece of content and have to scroll back to it after the few seconds it takes to sink in.
For instance how many reading actually know what’s happening in Turkey? Or that ExactTarget was acquired by Salesforce for billions of dollars? Or any equally important, business-specific update. I am totally guilty of this “double-take” predisposition and I’ve often missed opportunities to learn, grow as a consumer of content, and be informed about important, bottom-line impacting events. I’ve missed the chance to provide immense value to my community because of precisely the type of content Vaynerchuk is championing.
Do we, the brands and companies with the resources to develop consistent streams of content, want to build a culture of “fast food consumerism” around content and social media? Do we want to actively encourage QWERTY-vomit instead of meaningful, thoughtful insights that could actually benefit another human? Do we want to say without words that “fast and easy” holds more value than “thoughtful and creative?” Should the leading voices in this space really be creating and supporting this type of content?
I don’t think so.