In 1996, Bill Gates published an essay on Microsoft’s website titled “Content is King.” (This essay is short and worth a read. You can find it perfectly preserved here.) Since then, “content is king” has become the go-to philosophy for marketing on the web since content marketing took off in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s. However, the meaning behind the phrase has transformed, evolving as new technologies, styles and reader trends shape content creation.
In the early days of the net, dial-up connections and limited processing capabilities only allowed for very basic web pages with a few (very compressed) images and minimal styling. This meant the text really was the star of the show. It was important to draw people in with what you had to say, rather than how it looked. But that was almost 25 years ago.
These days, the ecosystem has evolved a lot — A LOT a lot. Cable and fiber-optic connections allow for blazing fast access at home, 4G LTE and the up-and-coming 5G allow for comparable speeds on-the-go, and vastly improved processing power allows computers both on the desk and in the pocket to display and render increasingly complex information and larger, higher resolution images and videos. Because of this, the way we consume content has also changed significantly since the ‘90s. The advent of social media has reduced our attention spans but has established expectations for what we view on the web and how we view it.
The content on your site alone is no longer enough to maintain a user’s attention. Now that’s not to say that you don’t need any text at all; far from it! But to capture your target audience’s attention and to keep it, your content needs to be attractive, well-structured, and easily navigable. Search engines are getting better at deciding what sites are worth showing your potential customers. They’re looking at a number of factors like keyword optimization, “shareability,” and the quality of the user experience. The more attractive your site is to Google’s virtual army of website-viewing robots, the closer you’ll be to that coveted first link on the results page. It’s just as important from the perspective of a user. If information is difficult to find or slow to load, the chances of a user leaving the site increase dramatically, and a user that left your site out of frustration is much less likely to return.
Content is still king, but there are new clothes and a new crown to get used to. Fortunately for you, On Target is an award-winning content marketing agency in Orlando, FL that specializes in taking your content to the next level. Tell us what makes you or your product so much better than your competition, and we’ll handle the rest.