Relevant Content Matters. Or So I’ve Been Saying…

Evidently, I’ve been saying it often since I started writing this blog almost three years ago. The above graphic is a wordle created from the rss feed of my blog. There’s no way to date-limit or post-limit the data pulled… what’s in the feed, or what you enter into a text block provided (handy if you want to dissect a post, an essay, a book, get crafty with your kids’ names) is what you get.

It’s a great “gut check” for whether or not you’re walking the talk. I did a wordle gut check for the blog about 18 months ago, and it’s markedly different in some important ways. It was more focused on community. On blogging, people and audience. Back in September of 2010, I was writing about those topics because many businesses and brands were just beginning to embrace blogging and were trying to figure out how it fit into online communities, audiences and ultimately, how they could use it to better connect with customers, who are of course, people first. For the past year, though, my focus has shifted from why businesses should be in conversation with their customers to what they ought to be talking about, sharing, building and why. Hence the keywords in this wordle are relevant social content. 

How do you go about being relevant to your audience? Hopefully you’re spending some time online and offline in the places your hoped for audience of prospects gathers. Hopefully you’re diligently trying to figure out what they do there, what they want from that channel of communication. Hopefully you’re looking at communication as a two-way street and I don’t just mean someone commenting on your blog post or liking your Facebook status update. Customers also communicate by their dollars, their time, their attention, by email, by online reviews to sites you don’t own, by word of mouth… to be relevant, you need to be delivering what people want, where they want it, when they want it, how they want it, and be prepared to hear them and respond if they have questions, comments, feedback, ideas, criticisms or kudos.

Given the “Search Together” idea that Google has recently implemented, using your social graph, your physical location and your past web history to personalize your search results, relevance is so much more than keywords on your website. If there are no conversations about you, with you, around your space…. you’ll struggle with the personalized search results based on the social graph.

How do you define relevance? How do you engage and converse and be socially present as a brand or business?


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