What’s the Deal with Content Shock?

Content shock! It certainly sounds unpleasant.

Basically, it’s a term used to summarize the idea that there’s a glut of content on the web, far more than people need or want, and far more than can be useful.

There’s no denying that there’s a lot of content online, especially considering that “content” is a catch-all term for the many written forms, images, video, audio, podcasts, memes, infographics, and other miscellaneous multimedia stuff existing in the digital realm. There’s also no denying that a lot of it is, shall we say, less than high-value.

But is there too much content? And does it mean, as some say, that content marketing is dead?


People Still Want Content

We were going to dig up studies and cite some statistics to illustrate this point, but it doesn’t really seem necessary. Are people still going online and consuming content? Obviously they are. In fact, a lot of them are checking out a lot content a lot of the time. It’s one of the main things people do on the internet.

People Still Want Information

A lot of content consumption is for entertainment purposes. But a lot is for informational purposes, too. From a business’s perspective, people visiting your website are generally somewhere in one of the three stages of the buyer’s journey (awareness, consideration, and deciding).

They’re seeking answers to specific questions that help move them through these stages until the journey ends with purchasing a product or service. Your website copy is part of what influences them, but often it’s the informative writing—not the sales-oriented parts—that convince them to buy from you.

Usually, this information is in the form of articles or blog posts. By adding informative, valuable, reliable, well-written content to your business website, you build your brand authority, appear generous and trustworthy, and develop a better relationship with your existing and potential customers that increases sales, brand loyalty, and referrals. 

People Especially Still Want Quality Content

The concept of content shock didn’t come about because there’s so much content on the web, but because there’s so much bad content on the web. If you haven’t noticed, much of it is poorly crafted, filled with misinformation, too salesy or spammy, and otherwise not particularly valuable.

But there’s no shortage of demand for content that engages, informs, helps, inspires, and otherwise delivers real value for its consumers. Your target market has questions and problems. Ultimately, your products or services hopefully solve one of their key problems. But if you provide content that answers their questions along the way, and maybe even that solves tangentially related problems for free, you’ll become a go-to source for what you sell.

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