I love sports and read sports news several times a day. So it is probably not a surprise that a USA Today sports story,
“Pac-12 Conference networks come with big money at stake,”
caught my eye.
Actually, it was one specific comment made by Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott that got me to thinking. Commissioner Scott, describing the impetus for a new college sports network, said this: “The idea is Pac-12 content, anywhere, anytime, by any device.”
Scott’s comment perfectly summarizes a couple of key ideas that are important for us to remember.
First, content is key. We have to produce information that people want to read, share, and comment upon or we have little hope of engaging our audiences. If the engineers or planners with whom we work provide us with technical, acronym-riddled information, it is our responsibility to translate the details into a compelling story of innovation, accountability and project delivery.
Second, our content must be created with multiple channels of distribution in mind. Our customers today are mobile. They are used to on-demand services delivered wherever they are and whenever they want them. Our content needs to be created in such a way that we can easily share it through multiple channels and at a moments notice.
For the Pac-12, content (sports and commentary on sports) will be available on cable systems, satellite providers, and over the internet for access by smartphones, tablets and computers. This isn’t really new as most major networks – CNN, ESPN and others – have similar strategies.
In our industry, we’re trying to do the same thing whether we have fully thought through the bigger strategy or not. State DOTs are using a number of tools to provide information to their customers — newsletters, twitter feeds, Facebook pages, project web pages, 5-1-1 alert systems, YouTube and other online videos, podcasts. In many ways, this is indeed the spirit behind the “content, anywhere, anytime, by any device” comment.
What we often miss, and I can only guess that it is implied in the Pac-12 Networks’ marketing, is a consistent and coherent strategic message that carries across all platforms and all channels.
So ask yourself, are you producing compelling content? Does that content carry your key strategic messages? And, is that content available anytime, anywhere, for any device?