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When Marketing Changes

Brennan White
February 16, 2016

Some of us in the content marketing space for the past decade knew this was coming. Some of us were even ballsy enough to turn our customers away from newsjacking and jumping on the latest trending topic even as the biggest tech companies in the space were beating that drum hard.

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"Content is hard to measure, but ultimately, it's what matters most," the argument went. "Once the big platforms get their momentum and their ad platforms up and humming, they will find a way to measure it... and they'll penalize you for mindless, clickbait content. They will require you to be sincere about your content or fail."

Some brands listened and boy are they happy they did.

Well, that day is at hand. All of the major content platforms are making a shift toward penalizing poor content. Just like how mindless keywords stopped SEO-ing your site, no longer will click-baiting content suffice on your content marketing channels.

If you didn't hear the warnings in time, here are the important things to know and the ways to react successfully.

Below I've referenced three articles from the past month that highlight changes being made by three tech giants (Google, Facebook, and Twitter) as they are adapting (or implementing) their algorithms to optimize for content quality. All three require a similar strategy to survive the change - make your content better, deeper, and more engaging - and each platform has its nuances. I also point you in the right direction to navigate these changes. Further I recommend technologies to support you while the changes are being made.

  1. Twitter
    • The Cliffs Notes: Twitter is rolling out an opt-in algorithm that takes into account interactions when prioritizing tweet placement (rather than a straight feed as is default).
    • What Tech To Use to Automatically Optimize for this Change: Cortex
    • Key Quote: "It's just that now Twitter is rewarding the better content, organic or paid."
    • Keep an Eye On: Adoption. As an opt-in, this algorithm might not take off. Pay attention to the latest Twitter news for changes, or follow me to stay informed about the Twitter algorithm.
  2. Google
    • The Cliffs Notes: Depth of content matters more than keywords
    • What technology will help you master this paradigm shift and thrive: MarketMuse
    • Key Quote: "Topically relevant [content] significantly outperformed content that didn’t cover a topic in-depth. "
    • Keep an Eye On: How quickly and deeply this change will be adopted and expanded on by the big G.
  3. Facebook
    • The Cliffs Notes: Facebook is doubling down on content quality to "weed out publishers that rely on click-bait for traffic." (Sorry Newsjackers!)
    • What Tech to Invest In to Automatically Adapt your Strategy: Cortex
    • Key Quote: "Pages might see some declines in referral traffic if the rate at which their stories are clicked on does not match how much people report wanting to see those stories near the top of their newsfeed."
    • Keep an Eye On: Whether your organic content can survive without a data-driven content marketing solution.
These three big moves, all being made right now confirm the need for software-driven content guidance for brands who care about organic traffic from all major digital channels or brands who use inbound marketing.

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