” I am not going to sit on my ass as the events that affect me unfold to determine the course of my life. I’m going to take a stand. I’m going to defend it. Right or wrong, I’m going to defend it”
Cameron Frye, Ferris Beuller’s Day Off (1986)
Here are a few rules on how to write interesting content:
1. Catchy listicle title (check)
2. Controversial point of view (check)
3. Offer sage advice on content marketing and how it can benefit your business, project, blog, life choices… (check)
4. Call to action at the end of this article to read more about my views on things marketing related and what makes me stand out from other blogs (check)
5. Write a list. (check)
According to this grandiose list of things to make me stand out as a content marketer (I’ve done a lot of reading and following accounts that constantly remind me of the need to write ‘killer’ content – don’t shoot me, aim your
gun praise at the messenger who share such articles across numerous platforms), I’ve followed the ‘rules’ of content marketing.
Except I haven’t.
Content marketing has gotten to a level where I simply can’t keep up anymore. Whether it be a snazzy list from Buzzfeed on the numerous shades of tea (mine’s a builders, splash of milk, no sugar – I’m sweet enough thanks ☺) to Upworthy sharing a video on the plight of female vegan rats and the persecution they face from evil extermimators (so sad). This constant fight for my eyeballs and my attention can be overwhelming in this day and age. If it isn’t a picture of cute cats, then it’s another listicle of the things I can be doing to improve my life or educate myself more on something I’m likely to forget in a few days. Spare me the thought on big data and how wonderful it is (yes, Big data does have its merits, but only if you can extract numbers that are useful and relevant to whatever it is you do).
Is there a need to write content for contents sake? Will the world stop if I struggle to engage you with my written thoughts and musings? Probably not, however there will always be bloggers, writers, journalists, tweeters, et al. vying for my (and everyone else’s) attention. I do enjoy reading new articles, watching videos and learning a bit every day. I just enjoy learning at my own pace. The effect this content overload has on my concentration is probably the reason why tabbed browsing is so essential to me (heck, I even have ‘Have I Got News For You?’ on in the background whilst writing this blog entry on my smartphone as I glance at my laptop).
Anyhow, I digress. I don’t want another article telling me how to improve my content strategy or write killer content. It’s become so saturated that almost every other article reads the same. Even the lists are the same. No idea’s original, nothing new under the sun, and I’m feeling the burn.
I admire a writer’s honest, real and authentic point of view, I really do. I just want my attention span back so I can take it in, one article, one tab, one video, one picture at a time. So the next time you’re faced with a sea of words and images floating around the Internet, take a deep breath, swim through it, and pick what is relevant to you.