How do we measure the value of content? Given the amount of money many brands are currently sinking into content, this would seem to be a pretty important question to answer – especially since the conventional ways for measuring the value of content are not really designed to work in this new world where the brand positions itself as a publisher or media organisation – producing forms of online magazine.
To date we have generally measured brand content in two ways: either its effectiveness as a piece of advertising (usually via a direct link through to increases in sales) or we have measured it in the context of how it sits within a website (often through its place in a journey designed to lead through to online action or transaction). In both of these instances the amount of content we produced was relatively restricted – either because it was expensive to produce or because producing too much of it lead to confusion. However, the new approach dictates that brands produce a continuous, high volume stream of output – much like a conventional publisher. No doubt this is why the publisher model is one that many brands like to reference.
Coca-Cola: leading the pack, but in the right direction?
Coca-Cola is one of the most high profile examples of a brand that has embraced the content and publication model. In its, now famous Content 2020 video, chief creative type, Jonathan Mildenhall outlines how Coca-Cola is shifting from “creative excellence to content excellence”. The corporate website has been declared dead and instead been transformed into a digital magazine and its stated ambition is to “make a Coke story part of your daily habit – whether it’s on Google+, Facebook, or Flipboard.” Now that is some form of ambition. I can’t even identify a traditional publisher whose content (at least in the online space) I consume as part of a daily habit. The closest for me is the BBC – but even then I tend to come across their stories rather than making any conscious effort to visit their site (or use their app).
Set against this background, there has been a fascinating blogversation taking place between Ashley Brown – the prime mover at Coca-Cola behind the brand as publisher push, and Mark Higginson – from the University of Brighton. Back in February Continue reading