Sign up right now for email updates and get two free ebooks:

It’s All About the Content … Right?

It’s been said so many times it has lost all meaning. Focus on the content. Content is king. Write!

Fine.

Why then do some people create crummy but popular content?

How is it that brilliant writing is often overlooked?

So it can’t be just about the content. Something else is necessary.

  • Do you buy bottled water for the content?
  • Does a Rolex tell the time better than a Timex?
  • Why does a coke from a vending machine cost more than a larger bottle from the supermarket?
  • How is it that Seth Godin can give his articles away then sell the same words as $16 books?

It’s true that if your “stuff” is brilliant someone might notice eventually. There is always the possibility that your magical someone might tell others of your brilliance. But that is just outsourcing what you could be doing yourself.

Even “free” has to be sold.

Content, products, services, they all need to be packaged. Don’t be afraid of a little promotion.

“Build it and they will come” you say? Good luck with that.

Sign up right now for email updates and get these
two free ebooks

"Creating Killer
Flagship Content"

"Authority Alliances"

Just enter your primary email address in the form below and hit the button!

Before commenting, please read my Comments Policy - thanks!

Comments

  1. Unless you’ve got the bucks Chris you somehow have to ‘magic’ something from nothing.

    Writing the best article ever on a new site will not have people battering your door down because of the simple fact that nobody will see it.

    If you have no money, like I haven’t then you have to learn patience. I have a whole bucket full of patience. No nice VCs for me, just good old fashioned grunt work. I’ve spent the last month manually entering our e-commerce catolog for the second time in six months. Is this a good use of my skill set…no. Will it get me closer to where I want to be…YES! So I did it anyway. There wasn’t anybody else around to do it and I can’t afford to pay somebody else to do it. It’s nearly done now.

    Work away at things long enough, make the right connections, then you *might* get somewhere.

    Stick at it Chris…it is far too easy to think that things take a couple of months when in reality, if you are doing things right, things are going to take a couple of years.

    A lot of problems come from unreasonable expectations. If you expect that your work will be completely ignored, treat with utter indifference then when something nice happens then you get a kick out of it however small it is. You’ve had a comment from Seth Godin on this blog…geese I’d give my right arm for that. That’s gotta make you feel good for a while hasn’t it?

    However, if you get in the mindset that whatever you do will be greated with utter euphoria by your readers/users then when that doesn’t happen (which is 99.999999% of the time) you’ll feel bad about it. Negativity like that is probably the reason most people give up on things way too early.

    Knowing when to give up is one of the hardest things to do in life I think.

    My blog, I not even interested in my audience numbers for at least a couple of years…that’s just how long it takes.

  2. Unless you’ve got the bucks Chris you somehow have to ‘magic’ something from nothing.

    Writing the best article ever on a new site will not have people battering your door down because of the simple fact that nobody will see it.

    If you have no money, like I haven’t then you have to learn patience. I have a whole bucket full of patience. No nice VCs for me, just good old fashioned grunt work. I’ve spent the last month manually entering our e-commerce catolog for the second time in six months. Is this a good use of my skill set…no. Will it get me closer to where I want to be…YES! So I did it anyway. There wasn’t anybody else around to do it and I can’t afford to pay somebody else to do it. It’s nearly done now.

    Work away at things long enough, make the right connections, then you *might* get somewhere.

    Stick at it Chris…it is far too easy to think that things take a couple of months when in reality, if you are doing things right, things are going to take a couple of years.

    A lot of problems come from unreasonable expectations. If you expect that your work will be completely ignored, treat with utter indifference then when something nice happens then you get a kick out of it however small it is. You’ve had a comment from Seth Godin on this blog…geese I’d give my right arm for that. That’s gotta make you feel good for a while hasn’t it?

    However, if you get in the mindset that whatever you do will be greated with utter euphoria by your readers/users then when that doesn’t happen (which is 99.999999% of the time) you’ll feel bad about it. Negativity like that is probably the reason most people give up on things way too early.

    Knowing when to give up is one of the hardest things to do in life I think.

    My blog, I not even interested in my audience numbers for at least a couple of years…that’s just how long it takes.

  3. You’re absolutely right. There is much more to it than quality of content. There’s a trick to success. It seems to be about creating desire. You have to find a way to get people to want what you offer. Those who have found a way are able to give stuff away and later have people pay money for the very same thing. That’s why some writers have been successful at blogging their writing first, then getting the same worked picked up by a publisher. You would think the market had been saturated with the free version. Not necessarily. I can’t remember who it was who said something like it’s not having given away his writing that kept his sales low, it was obscurity. Can anyone provide the exact reference for this? I’m experimenting with this by blogging a novel on my site. Readers tell me they like it — now I need to find a “trick” that will get publishers thinking the same!!

  4. You’re absolutely right. There is much more to it than quality of content. There’s a trick to success. It seems to be about creating desire. You have to find a way to get people to want what you offer. Those who have found a way are able to give stuff away and later have people pay money for the very same thing. That’s why some writers have been successful at blogging their writing first, then getting the same worked picked up by a publisher. You would think the market had been saturated with the free version. Not necessarily. I can’t remember who it was who said something like it’s not having given away his writing that kept his sales low, it was obscurity. Can anyone provide the exact reference for this? I’m experimenting with this by blogging a novel on my site. Readers tell me they like it — now I need to find a “trick” that will get publishers thinking the same!!

  5. You have a good point. When people don’t know your blog they can’t visit it. So by promoting you can let those people know that your blog is there.
    I think that promoting your blog is very important.

  6. You have a good point. When people don’t know your blog they can’t visit it. So by promoting you can let those people know that your blog is there.
    I think that promoting your blog is very important.

  7. Good questions, interesting examples…
    I’d say the first two (bottled water, Rolex watches) are primarily about branding — to fill a perceived (created?) need or insecurity; the second two (vending machine, Seth’s books) are largely a matter of convenience.

    In the case of Seth Godin, he’s been clever enough to figure out that it’s worth $16 to people to have his info in a tidy package, rather than ferret it out for themselves through all his free articles.

    Food for thought, indeed!

  8. Good questions, interesting examples…
    I’d say the first two (bottled water, Rolex watches) are primarily about branding — to fill a perceived (created?) need or insecurity; the second two (vending machine, Seth’s books) are largely a matter of convenience.

    In the case of Seth Godin, he’s been clever enough to figure out that it’s worth $16 to people to have his info in a tidy package, rather than ferret it out for themselves through all his free articles.

    Food for thought, indeed!

  9. Yes it takes time but it also takes dogged determination and lots of promotion.

  10. Yes it takes time but it also takes dogged determination and lots of promotion.

  11. Also without money you can get visitors. Just by letting people know that you wrote something or by giving people comments ang their blog. Thses are small figures for me but very important. I always look al how many people visit me. Because it is goog to see when there is 1 person more on my blog.

  12. Also without money you can get visitors. Just by letting people know that you wrote something or by giving people comments ang their blog. Thses are small figures for me but very important. I always look al how many people visit me. Because it is goog to see when there is 1 person more on my blog.

  13. Supply and demand can only come together through promotion, true enough! One can find/create a need that’s burning to be filled, produce the brilliant content to meet that need (with the utmost convenience for the audience), and school oneself in patience — but if the world doesn’t know that the goods are on offer, it can’t very well reap a reward…

  14. Supply and demand can only come together through promotion, true enough! One can find/create a need that’s burning to be filled, produce the brilliant content to meet that need (with the utmost convenience for the audience), and school oneself in patience — but if the world doesn’t know that the goods are on offer, it can’t very well reap a reward…

  15. Success is work? You mean I can’t just throw up Agloco links and be a millionaire?

    Darn.

    /sarcasm

  16. Success is work? You mean I can’t just throw up Agloco links and be a millionaire?

    Darn.

    /sarcasm

  17. Unfortunately yes despite what you might read in sales letters ๐Ÿ˜‰

  18. Unfortunately yes despite what you might read in sales letters ๐Ÿ˜‰

  19. “Build it and they will come” you say? Good luck with that. ~ Chris G.

    This is not the question anymore. Now it’s Build it and tell people to come. People are establishing themselves with social media marketing more than anything by going to digg,reddit,furl, etc. Content is not the main key anymore, it’s how you get your name out there that will produce results. Well that’s my 2 cents Chris.

  20. “Build it and they will come” you say? Good luck with that. ~ Chris G.

    This is not the question anymore. Now it’s Build it and tell people to come. People are establishing themselves with social media marketing more than anything by going to digg,reddit,furl, etc. Content is not the main key anymore, it’s how you get your name out there that will produce results. Well that’s my 2 cents Chris.

  21. As Chris and the comments show … it’s a combination of elements … or the execution of a well planned process that lead to success. That’s the case for developing great SEO traction, great site traffic, great conversion rates and sales. In just having one part of the equation work … you end up with a result that falls short.

  22. As Chris and the comments show … it’s a combination of elements … or the execution of a well planned process that lead to success. That’s the case for developing great SEO traction, great site traffic, great conversion rates and sales. In just having one part of the equation work … you end up with a result that falls short.

  23. Yup. What can I say but ‘Yup.’

    There are so many pieces to the puzzle that it can be overwhelming for a newbie- like standing at the foot of Mt. Everest and looking at the peak.

    And yet, it’s a step at a time. And remembering that view from 500 feet can still be pretty darn cool. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Content is good- but no promotion? Ah well…
    Content and promotion, but no offer? Ah well…
    Content and promotion and an offer, but no strategy? Ah well…
    Content and promotion and an offer and strategy, but no meaning? Ah well…
    Content and promotion and an offer and… etc, etc..

    As I said, there are many pieces to the puzzle. The trick is-
    – staying in your heart and out of depletion
    – learning from folks who know what they are doing
    – patience and persistence
    – a mission and vision that inspires you, so the patience and persistence make sense.

    All this from a little statement about good content versus good promotion? I like it, Chris. Thanks for generating the thoughts.

  24. Yup. What can I say but ‘Yup.’

    There are so many pieces to the puzzle that it can be overwhelming for a newbie- like standing at the foot of Mt. Everest and looking at the peak.

    And yet, it’s a step at a time. And remembering that view from 500 feet can still be pretty darn cool. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Content is good- but no promotion? Ah well…
    Content and promotion, but no offer? Ah well…
    Content and promotion and an offer, but no strategy? Ah well…
    Content and promotion and an offer and strategy, but no meaning? Ah well…
    Content and promotion and an offer and… etc, etc..

    As I said, there are many pieces to the puzzle. The trick is-
    – staying in your heart and out of depletion
    – learning from folks who know what they are doing
    – patience and persistence
    – a mission and vision that inspires you, so the patience and persistence make sense.

    All this from a little statement about good content versus good promotion? I like it, Chris. Thanks for generating the thoughts.

  25. It is absolutely true that great content alone won’t automatically attract readers to your blog/site. Selling your content is crucial. As Aaron said, these elements of success elevate each other and not executing one would result in being one step away from success.

  26. It is absolutely true that great content alone won’t automatically attract readers to your blog/site. Selling your content is crucial. As Aaron said, these elements of success elevate each other and not executing one would result in being one step away from success.

  27. Promotion is good, it gets people to your site, but after that you better have something to say…

  28. Promotion is good, it gets people to your site, but after that you better have something to say…

  29. You need to have good stuff and an audience. One without the other is like talking at your reflection in the mirror. It looks like a conversation but isn’t really ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. You need to have good stuff and an audience. One without the other is like talking at your reflection in the mirror. It looks like a conversation but isn’t really ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. It takes a fine balance of many things, good content, audience, interaction, presentation etc.

    Content is indeed king but how do you know if it’s a king if there’s nothing else to indicate it is the king.

  32. It takes a fine balance of many things, good content, audience, interaction, presentation etc.

    Content is indeed king but how do you know if it’s a king if there’s nothing else to indicate it is the king.

  33. You cant survive without friends, you cant watch TV without remote …its the same thing. Nothing works alone. Its network what is more important. Grow it from now coz when you grow big you will have people around you.

  34. You cant survive without friends, you cant watch TV without remote …its the same thing. Nothing works alone. Its network what is more important. Grow it from now coz when you grow big you will have people around you.

  35. I like the mirror analogy: “it looks like a conversation but isn’t”. Very well said ๐Ÿ™‚

  36. I like the mirror analogy: “it looks like a conversation but isn’t”. Very well said ๐Ÿ™‚