Are You Valuable Enough?

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to spend some time with friends at a little jazz club that my husband and I like.  While there, we got into a conversation about how MUCH information is online, and validity of that information.  One person in our group teaches middle school English, and she was talking about how they require students to source at least partially from books, because those sources have some checks and balances, unlike online sources, where anyone can post anything, true or not.

And it got me to thinking about how we have to learn a whole new set of skills to cope with the sheer volume of information we receive on a daily basis.  If you’re like me, you’ve gone through your inbox and canceled a lot of subscriptions that at one time seemed interesting.  We just can’t get to all those newsletters and blogs, and still have time for life.  I now only subscribe by email to a limited few, and send the rest to my RSS reader, which I visit when I can.  For me, it’s the ones I get by email that I know I’ll read almost daily.  The others I read once in a while, when I get there.  But it’s because I’ve sorted through the clutter and decided what really matters to me that this system works for me.

I think we’re going to see more and more that people are sorting through the sheer volume of information available, and only looking at what really is important to them.  The technology already exists to do so.  Facebook allows us to determine who shows up in the News Feed of our individual accounts.  We can subscribe or unsubscribe at will to various types of content around the web.  Friend lists on social networks allow us to determine who we see.

So as a content marketer, are you going to make the cut?  Are people going to find you valuable enough to keep you visible?  I can guarantee you that if all you do is subject your friends to an onslaught of “book a party,” “buy my stuff,” and “join my team” type posts, they most certainly will not.  And so you must refine your craft.  You must spend time finding out what’s important to your target market, and sharing that consistently.

We are on information overload as a society.  And people will learn to apply filters, simply in order to cope.  You should be preparing now if you want to escape the filter, and remain relevant.

What will you do to be valuable enough?  Share it in the comments below.

Image Credit: Banalities

3 Responses to Are You Valuable Enough?
  1. Mark Bosworth
    August 3, 2010 | 3:49 pm

    Theoretically, the number of people unsubscribing from your customer email blast should be an indicator of how engaged people are and what type of value you are delivering. However, I’m not certain that is the case. I’m always surprised at how few people really unsubscribe from our emails. (We average between .2% and .3% unsubscribe per month). I personally believe that lots of people just delete emails instead of unsubscribing. (Alternatively, we could be such great copywriters that everyone wants to read what we say…. nah)

    • Jennifer Fong
      August 3, 2010 | 4:06 pm

      Or they’ve just told their spam filter to deliver your message to a box they never see. 🙂

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