Which comes first – the content or the distribution ?

Many companies, both large and small, are implementing content marketing as part of their overall marketing strategy. And often there is a debate about how much time should be invested in content creation vs building distribution networks.

If you invest in content, its success is dependent upon its visibility to the largest number of people. Good content is written for a specific audience, so needs to be delivered to them if it is not to be wasted.

If you prioritise creating networks, then a flow of good content is needed to help nurture and grow them. A network starved of content will disintegrate.

A good content marketing strategy is a symbiosis of content and distribution, with equal investment in both.

In a recent eConsultancy article, Carson discusses this balance at length, and examines the challenges of creating a successful viral video. When 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute, the chances of any video going viral becomes a lottery. And nobody can really plan what content will have the capability to go viral.

He also looks at the success of content distributors such as Huffington Post, BuzzFeed and Upworthy. These have largely been built using curated rather than self-created content.

Finally within the article, he summarises by quoting the US entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuck: “Content is King, but marketing is Queen, and she runs the household.”

Content needs Distribution AND Distribution requires Content – businesses need to invest in both.