Content Distribution or Access?
posted by Stuart Cumming ~ 29/04/14
Category: Marketing
I was out on my LSD on Saturday - that's Long Slow Distance for you non-runners, not some mind-expanding substance! When you are on these runs it helps to think of something to mask the pain.

A lot has been said recently at Content Marketing World Sydney about "keeping the customer as the focus of all your marketing activity", "it's about them, not you", "the customer is the hero, not the marketer". 

But a mindset shift for me occurred when I started thinking about various ways in which content is distributed.

I realised that a "content channel distribution strategy" may well be the wrong approach, because the concept of "distribution" is very much "old school". 

Central to the term "distribution" is marketers being in control whereas it's clear that control has very much shifted to the customer.

Instead, I started to think it may be more relevant to focus on how, when, where and why a customer would "access" that content.

The more I thought about this the more I believe it has currency, not just in my LSD-addled brain. I've since discussed it with a client, a B2B expert and some of the guys in the office; their responses lead me to believe I could be on to something.

The concept of "access to content" gives a powerful new dimension to the content strategy discussion. 

It truly involves looking at the issue from the customer's perspective when you begin to think about applying this practically. 

It's no longer a case of pushing "content" out; I'm thinking it'll probably also help put a brake on creating content just for the sake of it.

And, if you adopt Joe Pulizzi's view that the website is where all content resides ("Epic Content Marketing") this starts to make even more sense.

Because I'm not sure there are too many examples of "channel-exclusive" content.

So, rather than saying "create once and distribute ten times" through website, Facebook, print (remember that?), Instagram, YouTube, blog, podcast, etc. I'm thinking perhaps "create once and give the customer access at ten touchpoints" should be the new mantra.

Do you think this helps? Or do you think it's just semantics? And if so, why?

I'd like your opinions.
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