Are You Guilty of Content Foie Gras?

February 2, 2017

by Carla Johnson

An interesting question came up at dinner the other day.

I was in Chicago catching up with my good friend Evan McLaughlin. Evan and I met a few years ago at Content Marketing World and I’ve found his perspective as a content strategist for Motorola Solutions interesting.

While perusing the menu he suddenly sat back, crossed his arms and asked me a pointed question.

“Do we suffer from content foie gras?”

How do we define “too much?”

Foie gras is a French term that means fatty liver. It refers to the practice of over stuffing a duck or goose in order to make their liver insanely fat. The culinary belief is that this fatty liver is a delicacy in which to partake.

The irony of Evan’s question is this: These animals are force fed something they don’t want (or need) in order to create something that someone else thinks is amazing.

In the content world, isn’t that exactly what we’re trying to do? To force so much content down the throat of our audiences that we’ll eventually convince them that we’re a delicacy?

I’ve written about research that highlights why customers don’t trust you and it boils down to this: We push products down their throat and have too little empathy for their situation.

Re-learning the obvious

Evan asks questions like this of our profession that I wish more content marketers would probe into. Why are we so blind to the obvious? Why do we continue with tactics we have proof don’t work?

Marketers, it’s time to realize that enough’s enough. Stop the ridiculousness of pumping out content for the sake of production rather than purpose. Quit bowing to other people’s request for things that don’t have a rhyme or reason. Instead, start with the experience you want to create for your audience, and then back that into what makes sense.

Photo credit: Gratisography

About Carla

Carla Johnson Innovation Creativity Speaker Author

Carla Johnson helps leaders who are often paralyzed by traditional thinking. They suffer from slow growth, an eroding competitive advantage, low employee engagement, and depleted investor confidence. Their teams lack purpose and progress and constantly battle a resistance to change and new ideas.

As the world’s leading innovation architect, Carla’s spent 20 years helping leaders shatter limits and discover undiscovered possibilities. Through years of research, she’s developed a simple, scalable 5-step process that teaches people how to consistently produce inspired ideas that lead to uncommon outcomes.

Carla Johnson Innovation Creativity Speaker Author