• Joanna Wells

Why brands should start acting like publishers…

I cannot tell you the number of articles I’ve read telling brands to “think like a publisher” -with a step-by-step guide listing all the qualities needed to achieve this. How many of these brands have tried and failed? My guess is most of them. To be successful you need to act like a publisher not just think like one. How often have you heard from brands and marketeers that the strategy was solid, but we just could execute on it? It's important to hire people who have worked in publishing who have an editorial content background and know how to create engaging and entertaining content on a daily basis for your brand


So, what do you need to do to act like a publisher?

You need to stop chasing short term clicks and quick rewards. Platforms will always prioritise these above anything else - this is their business model. Publishers will be in it for the long game. Publishers prioritise building relevancy and reach above all else which then drives what everyone is chasing – revenue. Make sure you know who your audience is and have a clear mission statement. Publishers know how to build audiences and engage with them day in day out, with consistent premium content.

The production hub is the nerve centre of any publisher. You will need to have the right skills and processes in place or else you’re going to struggle - and costs can quickly spiral out of control. Think about how you might create an ongoing narrative with your audience and ensure that your storytelling is authentic, engaging and platform specific. With the right creative and editorial talent, you can start to think and act like a news publisher. Daily topical content will ensure you get your audience coming back time and again. But remember, a successful publisher always keeps their eye on costs.

Any publisher with a long-term strategy will prioritise editorial consistency and relevancy above everything else. Make sure you have all the right guidelines in place: think about voice, tone, the images and video you use and how its edited and brought together – it’s all about telling the story of your brand, your values and where you’re going to take your customers.

Create a list of content types you know will engage your audience and outline detailed requirements for each product or content type. Make sure you have an editorial calendar that you constantly update and create content that is about topics that engage your audience; monitor how often you cover these topics and listen out for any feedback through comments and shares. Don’t be afraid to try new things, even if it doesn’t work you’ve learnt something new about your audience.

Successful publishers understand the importance of robust processes, skills based editorial talent and scalable flexible content creation tailored to specific audiences. When you start to think and then act like a publisher and you will see your communications improve, content succeed and internal culture flourish.

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