One thing we all seem to have an abundance of right now is time. It probably seemed like a small positive at the beginning of this prolonged pause we are all enduring. We could now check some things off of our to-do lists. But checking off some things has turned into checking off all the things. And catching up on television shows and movies we’ve been wanting to watch has turned, as our agency founder, Scott, likes to joke, into finishing Netflix. Now we're stuck trying to figure out what to do next.
For me, that next thing has been consuming content. Lots of it. And there’s one group that’s winning at content marketing right now: TV chefs and food personalities.
Cooking Up Better Content
Now, in all fairness, I watch a lot of food television. I was already following several of these food folks on social media, and they were already using content to build their personal brands. But once we went into lockdown mode, several of them stepped up their content games.
The Q&As that sometime felt a little like an obligation for these folks have become much more impromptu and frequent. And they are cooking again. Seemingly all the time you can find someone in their pantry pulling out items and cooking with what they have. As a fan, it’s been great. A lot of times these food personalities don’t have their own cooking shows anymore. They’ve become commentators in many instances, so it’s been fun to see them get behind the stove again. There are a few that have stood out, and that's because they are opening up more of their lives to us.
Aarti Sequeria has essentially turned her Instagram feed into AartiTV with scheduled programming for every day. That includes a weekly Q&As with just her and her followers and live conversations with friends. And every night at 7 p.m. eastern time she’s broadcasting her husband’s reading of a bedtime story to their two girls.
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In the midst of these uncertain times, I’m committed to serving up a little bit of joy every day of the week ☀️ So, here is what’s on the menu, friends☝🏾 I’m here for you 💛 Every day. Every week. We’re in this together. Tag someone who you think needs to join our lovely internet fam 👇🏾 #inthistogether #communitylove #stayhome
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Jet Tila is a California-based chef who’s been teaching his followers how to cook all manner of Asian cuisine and offering instruction on cooking basics, like how to improve your knife skills.
Gordon Ramsay is known for his quick temper and quicker tongue, but on his Instagram feed he’s doing 10-minute cooking challenges, often with a member of his family manning the camera. Instead of shouting, he’s smiling. He’s a man who’s having fun and not taking himself too seriously.
Others are doing the same things, taking us into their homes and showing us their families. They are talking to us about things beyond cooking and the kitchen, but it all works. Why? Because it’s authentic.
Great Content Is Authentic
Just as we were all starting to self-isolate and communities around the country were beginning to layout rules against travel and getting together, Gal Gadot created a video of her and several celebrity friends singing John Lennon’s song Imagine. While the video never bothered me that much, it was roundly criticized for being out of touch and feeling forced. In other words, it wasn’t authentic.
And that’s the takeaway here. A lot of companies are pulling the plug, at least for now, on things like marketing and PR. That’s a mistake. Your efforts here shouldn’t stop, but they can’t look like they did before. If you don’t change what you’re talking about you’ll look out of touch at best. You could look opportunistic at worst.
We’ve said before that this is a time for brands to be of service. It’s also time for them to make sure they are authentic. (Honestly, brands should be of service and be authentic, quarantine or not.)
How Do You Create Authentic B2B Content?
Creating authentic B2B content starts by knowing your brand’s personality and then matching content to that. For Idea Grove, our brand personality includes traits like candid, curious, and clever. So authentic content from us will include personal stories, it’ll ask challenging questions, and it’ll be smart.
Authentic content also flows from an editorial viewpoint, and we’ve written before on how to create one of those for your business. For us, that editorial viewpoint is “Purposeful Growth.” So, in addition to matching our personality, everything we create needs to come through the lens of helping B2B technology businesses create purposeful growth.
If you’ve been thinking about creating content, this is a great time to start. People have time to engage with it. If you’ve already been creating content, this is a great time to experiment with new forms. If you’ve been writing blogs, try video. If you’ve been relying on ebooks, think about creating more interactive pieces.
Just make sure that anything you create feels authentic to your brand.