I will admit: I devour online content. A lot of it. Every day, in every kind of format, from blog articles and online comics to e-books and web series. And, of course, as remarketing, social platforms, audience targeting and paid tactics evolve, it’s even easier to find content (and, more importantly, for the content to find me) that interests, excites, inspires, or just makes me think.
These days, I’m particularly interested by feminist theory and the revitalization of modern feminism, which I imagine is in no small part due to the voices of celebs like Beyoncé, Amy Poehler, Caitlin Moran, and Emma Watson (I want to name about a million more, but this is already getting a little long). Their voices, among countless others, are changing how women and men think and act online and off.
Today, discussions around significant issues like wage parity, violence against women, mental and physical health, body image and politics (oh hey, Hillary) are dominating online resources like Feministing or SheRights, and permeating social networks and media outlets.
On a personal level, I love it. I am exposed to many perspectives and opinions I didn’t have access to (or just didn’t know about) five years ago. These men and women are making me think and helping me grow.
To me, a lot of credit goes to content strategy and content marketing. And here’s where we can take this conversation up a notch – content has done this for social issues and activism on many fronts. Whatever the issue, be it workers’ rights, race and discrimination, LGBTQIA communities, climate change, animal welfare, or anything and everything in between, content seems inexorably linked to social change. Here’s why:
- Everyone is a publisher. That wasn’t the case yesterday. Brands weren’t publishing content, and now we’re watching many create in-house newsrooms to do nothing else, like Marriott. Today, we have more platforms than ever to publish it on, and those such as Medium and Longform are a place where quality content can thrive.
- There are more ways to amplify your reach. If you’ve got something to say, you’re no longer relying just on the reach of your personal blog or owned channel to share your message. Social platforms drive traffic to our content, and share it more broadly than ever. We can also pay to boost our reach and find more people who share our vision, and it’s often incredibly inexpensive to do so online.
- There are always new voices to support you. Once you’ve reached people who share your values or views, it’s so easy for them to act. They can share your post or position, talk about it with their networks, and add third part endorsements that can help turn one voice into thousands.
These basic tenants of content strategy aren’t new thinking. But they are revolutionary when it comes to applying it to the issues and growth society faces together.
For me, content isn’t just changing my perspective. It’s changing my world.
——— Ellie Bramah is a former Director of Creative Strategy at NATIONAL Public Relations