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I recently finished Mark Schaefer’s book “The Content Code” and have to say it was a fantastic reminder of the importance of content distribution.
Mark reminds us that creating great content is not the finish line but the starting line. If you can’t ignite your content’s distribution, it won’t make any difference how great it is. He shares valuable tips on how we can build trust, build our Alpha Audiences (the people that really care about us) and get our content shared by building meaningful relationships.
I also appreciate the transparency and presentation of several sides of tactics. In his chapter on the importance of social proof, Mark discusses the importance of publicly showing signs of authority and relevance.
For example: He presented virtually the same article to several groups of people. One had been shared a few hundred times. The other just a handful of times. Which one would you read, he asked. Everyone picked the one with hundreds of shares. People make decisions based on signals that show relevance and authority. And more shares signals that the one article is better and more relevant.
As soon as Mark was done sharing all of those social proof best practices and tips, he shared why some signs of social proof should be considered to not be shown on a blog – for example, if they can be gamed. He mentioned one publication’s listing, which was solely based on one person’s opinion. At the least, I appreciate the full coverage of the topic.
The book is a great reminder that creating great content isn’t enough. We also have to figure out how to distribute it and get it to the right people at the right time.