June 14, 2018
Alan Shearer’s managerial career record is as follows: played 8; won 1; drawn 2 and lost 5. This is a win percentage of 12.5%.
You are well within your rights to ask yourself how Alan Shearer sees fit, to sit in judgement once a week and offer pseudo-insightful analysis of defensive plays gone awry, in light of his pathetic foray into management. Week in, week out (one of Shearer’s favourite phrases, incidentally), Alan sits atop a husk of nothingness and churns out his usual empty sound bites that are as predictable as Shearer is bland.
Hang on a minute; aren’t we being a bit hard on Alan? Yes, we are actually. He probably just wants to get out of the house for a bit and keep busy, and at least he had a go at management. Unlike a lot of the other pundits out there! Plus, I’d rather have Shearer than Mark Lawrenson (with his thatched roof haircut) any day of the week!
Shearer doesn’t actually do anything wrong. Infact, he does a lot of things right. Week in, week out! He’s a perfect fit for the BBC – a clean cut, England striker who’s scored a lot of goals and is a household name. He also has a vocal twang that illustrates the BBC’s desperate attempts to recruit employees with regional accents.
It’s just that he’s a bit obvious and, well, just a little bit boring.
How does this translate over to the art of content writing and/or copywriting? Firstly, copywriting should be distinguished from content writing in the sense that copywriting is exactly that – the copying of writing and stock phrases spluttered out in a lackadaisical manner, time and time again (another of Alan’s favourites). Copywriting does not involve any from of creative thought and writing as such.
Instead, it is often geared towards a particular in-house style and incorporates clichéd language and the continual repetition of phrases so that the article in question is displayed as highly as possible in Google’s search engines. The problem with that it that regardless of how highly the article appears within Google’s rankings, a reader is not going to read through an article that’s not engaging, has no sense of individual identity and is grinded out in a lackadaisical manner, time and time again.
In this respect, Alan Shearer is a copywriter who adapts to the BBC in-house style and spews out the necessary sound bites in an attempt to make it sound like he knows what he’s talking about. He’s just a content-filler designed to keep things chugging along in between the highlights.
Content Writing and Content Design, on the other hand, are predicated upon original writing that is backed by independent research and puts emphasis on the writer adding his or her own personal touch. This allows you to represent a product or service online in a more unique, tailored and targeted fashion. It is writing that has a personality and elevates itself above the usual humdrum of terse expression and phrasing.
To find such relatable traits in a football pundit, then we would have to combine the brash enthusiasm of Robbie Savage (who, regardless of what you think of him, does actually possess an independent personality) with the knowledge and nous of Bobby Robson.
Imagine that…Robbie Robson! Bobby Savage! They sound like a pair of wrestlers who tread (and slam) the boards down at the end of Blackpool pier!
If we look at the kind of companies that offer copywriting services and the kind of companies that offer content services, then we can extend this analogy a little further.
A company that provides content is similar in a way the to a Premier League side (slick, fresh and exciting). Whereas an organisation that provides copywriting services holds more in common with a Championship team (standard fare, largely route-one and with no real stand-out individuals).
Content providers operate in the Premier League of online writing services and will be able to provide you with the best quality service. A service with plenty of attacking marketing play, exciting build-ups and a smooth finishes.
Much like the Premier League, content providers harbour the best quality players/writers, who use their talents to understand your companies needs, adapt their tactics accordingly and then blast it home from the 30-yard line!
A content provider doesn’t just provide a client with innovative writing services; it also has an infrastructure in place that covers all of the wider aspects of online marketing, so as to enable your business to grow and be successful in the long-term. Think more Sheikh Mansour than Sheet Metal Jack Walker!
Any content provider operating in the Premier League of online marketing will be able to provide you with a range of relative services that exhibit solid link-up play and help you to grow your customer fan base.
Press releases, social media content, article writing, content production and marketing are all interlinked facets of the same strategy. A good content production company will be able to advise you on a multi-pronged approach to developing your business earnings. Not only by specifically targeting potential customers – but also by engaging them with original, quality content
If I were to try to quickly think of a big coffee company, a big pharmaceutical company, a big supermarket and a big telecommunications company then the four that immediately spring to mind are Starbucks, GlaxoSmithKline, Tesco and BT; all giants within their respective industries.
Similarly, the Premier League was once renowned for it’s ‘Big Four’ clubs, although of late this has seemingly become the ‘Big Six’.
The content writing industry is different in the sense that it has no large-multinationals who dominate it. Indeed, the idea of a faceless, London-based PR company creating bespoke online content for a cheese maker based in Hebden Bridge is somewhat ludicrous.
Large PR firms tend to employ the best global strategists (with a higher focus on international business development). Whereas small to medium content production companies employ locally based researchers and independent writers (with a focus on bespoke, creative writing that can reflect the individualism and locality of your business).
Large PR firms thus operate on a nationwide and international level, leaving plenty of room for small and medium-sized enterprises to focus their skills on benefitting the more proximate community.
This elicits a circumstance which is beneficial for both small and medium-sized content provision companies and local businesses whom wish to solicit their services. Bespoke writing can be created to target and engage a specific catchment area or a wider, national type of consumer/end-user.
The differentiation between companies who provide standard copywriting fare and companies who provide innovative content should be understood by any business owner hoping to court growth within the Premier League of online commerce.
You should avoid boring, repetitive ‘match of the day’ type content to be successful, and instead opt for creating Bobby Savage type pieces with real interest!