I’ve recently had the pleasure of reading Great by Choice, written by the notable Jim Collins, after Stewart Lyons, CEO at TeraGo Networks, recommended the book. Full of amazing information, this book holds a great deal of practical advice that one could apply to their career and life. After finishing the book, I found that there were three core concepts that greatly contributed to success; discipline, consistency, and preparation. I then considered how these concepts – or characteristics – could be applied to content marketing, and this is what I came up with:
1. Discipline: Establishing and adhering to a schedule can be difficult – especially if you work in an industry that is constantly evolving – but it’s very important for success. When you follow a schedule, such as an editorial calendar or content agenda, you have the ability to prepare, plan, and track your content. This allows you to build anticipation for your upcoming content pieces (ex. “check back next week when we cover part 2 of…”) and plan any SEO keyword changes.
2. Consistency: Communicating the same underlying values or traits throughout your content is essential when building or promoting your brand. Whether you’re creating content for a large business or small e-commerce site online, maintaining a consistent message is key to building trust. If your blog says one thing – like “we’re vegetarian” – and your recently published whitepaper says another – like “here’s why pork is important” – your prospects and customers won’t know which message to believe.
3. Preparation: One of the examples in the book that really resonated with me was about Bill Gates and his inability to stop working – even when his company, Microsoft, had achieved great success. The fear of facing an unknown obstacle drove Gates to continue working, because you never know when things might change. Since content marketing is changing every day, keeping up to date on all the latest tactics and trends can help you stay on step ahead – and one step closer to being a great content marketer.
This is the perfect time of year to begin incorporating these three concepts into your content marketing career since everyone is shifting into 2015 planning mode. Now, would I recommend this book to everyone? No. This book would only resonate with those who have a passion for the work they’re doing. If you’re not somewhat motivated to grow and develop your skills, then don’t even bother. This isn’t a passive read – it’s meant to provide you with the tools you need to build your own success.