Creating influential content is about listening first

NEW YORK: The key to creating integrated and influential content is listening to key audiences first, said David Tinson, VP of integrated communications at EA Sports.

NEW YORK: The key to creating integrated and influential content is listening to key audiences first, said David Tinson, VP of integrated communications at EA Sports.

"If the question is how many fans do we have on Facebook, you're missing the point,” said Tinson. “It'd be much more interesting to talk about the number of engagement [metrics] and how the engagements compare with our competitors in the video game space. A lot of us are getting to that point where there is a perceived notion of what the scorecard really is, and I think it is dependent on us to redefine it, and position it in a way that really looks at the level of engagement."

Tinson sat down at a PRWeek NEXT Conference panel Tuesday with Nick Childs, SVP, senior partner, and director of content development at Fleishman-Hillard, and Sean Cochrane, senior analyst at Forrester Research. The panel discussed the widening gap of different types of content providers, from individuals and brands to companies and media outlets.

The landscape is changing, added Childs, who said Fleishman has replaced "storytelling," seen as a one-push messaging strategy, with "storybuilding." The firm recently worked with Cigna to launch its first consumer-focused strategy in September with the hope that employees and eventually consumers will share stories.

"Feedback is constantly shaping the story in an authentic way," he added.

Cochrane said although PR and marketing practitioners are working more closely than ever to determine content influencers and value for social networks, the next "battle ground" will be mobile content development.

"You have to have value now," he said. "And what I mean by this is you can't just publish random content to everyone. It has to have purpose, and have reason for the 'fan' and 'follower.'"

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