No summer can come and go in the United States without a movie about sharks. This year it was about a giant prehistoric shark called a megaladon (which also happened to be my nickname for one of our first writers here at Anchor – Megan has gone on to do just fine for herself, thank you). It all started in 1975, of course, with Jaws scaring everybody out of the water for months. Incidentally, I challenge you to go back and watch that movie now and not laugh at the animatronic shark. It’s so clearly made of rubber that it bends and jiggles and bounces like a giant gummy snack. But I digress.
In the movie Jaws, one of the characters refers to the shark as the “perfect eating machine.” An even better line comes from The Simpsons, where the proprietor of the all-you-can-eat seafood restaurant describes Homer as a “remorseless eating machine.” If you’ll forgive a little whiplash here, that’s how I describe the internet to people who are new to the business of branding, marketing and search engines. You need to feed your website and social media platforms content constantly and consistently in order to stay relevant. Thanks to users, social media and Google, that smartphone in your hand is most definitely a remorseless eating machine.
Americans have always been a society of “what have you done for me lately,” but the mobile web has taken it to the next level. When your followers log on during their coffee break, they don’t want to read the same thing again and again; they’re actively attracted to something new. Search engines automate this same process, giving you extra “points” for having new content on your website. Platforms like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter keep score with followers – you better attract them with something interesting and fresh or you will have a hard time building up momentum.
So how can anybody feed this remorseless eating machine enough content to make it worthwhile? Just like your shop teacher told you in high school, it’s all about working smart. That story you write for your newsletter? Use it as a blog as well, then share it on all of your social media. A single piece of content can go a long way if you want it to. Another strategy is to keep an eye out for content that you can share that has been generated by somebody else. For example, if you are mentioned in a positive post from a customer, why not tell the world about it?
It’s hard to keep up, even when you work smart. It can be exhausting and frustrating (especially when the social media platforms seem to hinder your progress until you show them the money). But it’s worth it. The very best brands in the world today are “relentless content machines,” the perfect fit for the hungry, hungry internet. When your customers and clients get used to seeing your new information they start to look forward to it, and that is a big deal.
Don’t be afraid to go in the water. Those sharks want to buy your stuff and use your services. You just need to keep their attention, and new content is the best way to do it.