If there’s one thing you can learn…

… about content marketing from Bernie Sanders’campaign, it’s the importance of substance.

Jacob McMillan has written a great, easy-to-read analysis on why Sanders’ marketing campaign was so brilliant. He sums it up in 4 words: “He’s selling the steak”.

Simply put, Sanders showed that he had substance. Style, while present, was of secondary import. This is at odds with conventional marketing wisdom, which typically espouses style or ‘flash’ over almost anything else, says McMillan.

I admit that I did not pay particular attention to the minutiae of Sanders’ campaign during the presidential campaign – my mind had already been made up and nothing would sway it. However, in the few instances when I actually came across Sanders’messages, I was struck by their clarity and their significance. They made sense. They presented facts. They presented (a) truth. They weren’t easily dismissed. They were not mere fluff.

McMillan further argues that Sanders’ delivery was especially compelling, because it reached the target audiences where they are:

Identify where your audience spends its time and what it is they are consuming, then give them content that looks like that. You might have far more success with a few Instagram graphics than you ever had with your 4,000 word blog posts. It all depends on where your audience is.

Right now, our audience is on mobile. Logically, we should be adopting a mobile-first approach, but that has yet to happen. We are still not thinking in terms of what our end-users desire.

And this quote is a gem. I should print it out and paste it on the office walls:

Content” is an incredibly vague term. Youtube videos are “content”, but if your target audience doesn’t watch Youtube videos, creating a well-produced series of videos won’t accomplish anything for your business.

We need to be strategic about the content we are producing. We need to go where are readers are, serve them what they want and need, instead of producing an epic that might be award-winning, but which few people bother to read.

Do read the rest of McMillan’s piece, which talks about other successful content marketing campaigns.


6 Exceptional Content Marketing Examples You Should Emulate In 2016


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