Why Bother With Content?
We have all been hit with a tidal wave of content, so much so that most people can’t make head nor tail of it, because the sheer volume of content and number of sources is overwhelming. At the same time, people consume more content than ever before — and they’re consuming it rapidly and with arguably less confidence in its credibility than in previous decades.
With today’s seemingly unending content stream, the desire to hear from reliable sources is even greater. That desire puts associations at the center of endless opportunities to take center stage and showcase its work to audiences who would otherwise know nothing about them.
Associations clearly have credibility with their members, but they also have a credibility that can extend much further.
The Digital Age has delivered all the tools we need to leverage that credibility by engaging with a large audience more regularly. That’s a fact associations too often don’t capitalize on, leaving a valuable and easily accessible market virtually untapped in the process.
Watch the embedded video for additional context from an interview with Gary Hunt, the communicator director with the Ohio Society of CPAs, on how content is an integral part of his association’s offerings.
A fundamental problem in associations is their business models have them engaging in deep, but infrequent ways, a concept also known as episodic engagement.
Most associations will engage with someone through a seminar, an event or publication and then remain relatively silent until the next event or publication months later.
Those are meaningful forms of engagement. But if those are the association’s only forms of engagement, the organization doesn’t have the kind of frequency needed to build habit or loyalty.
In order to create brand habit, an association must compel people (whether members or not) to engage with them frequently and consistently. Doing that requires an association to make its usefulness (i.e., content credibility, quality, topicality, networking value, funding resources, community involvement, etc.) known to as many people as possible, as often as possible.
Capitalizing on Brand Credibility
Associations have highly valued brands, brands with credibility and trust. But they often fail to use these invaluable assets to their advantage. People are overwhelmed by mostly non-credible content, and associations have credible brands with reasons to talk to consumers more often.
The solution is content.
Consumers want to consume content frequently, and they want quite a bit of it. Moreover, they want good, relevant content from trustworthy sources, and they want it tailored to them.
By repositioning the association’s brand to provide daily or weekly content to an audience of members and beyond, you’re solving a problem for both the individual and the association. The association offers quality content personalized, while at the same time asserting its brand value by leveraging its credibility and giving brand impressions with a target audience on a regular basis, which leads to habit. Brand habits form from both the frequency of engagement and positive impressions.
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