The Future Of Content Could Be More Interactive - Forbes

Young businesswoman working from digital tablet in an office
Whether you’re working as part of a marketing group or as an individual, creating unique, engaging content is essential to building and sustaining any type of business. The ecosystem of technology to support content creation has never been larger…or harder to figure out.
Truth be told, I know plenty of highly capable people who feel daunted by the sheer vastness of the digital landscape. Just when they think they’ve got a grip on one popular media platform, something new comes along to supplant it. But there’s no need to throw up your hands in despair. All digital content platforms — whether they primarily support written material, images, videos, audio, or something else yet to be invented — are engineered with the same measurements of success. The end product may vary, true, but success always hinges on five basic principles.
Here are the five key steps I see as critical to building your brand via online content.

Most content platforms focus on one or two steps in this process. YouTube, for example, is a great platform for distribution and monetization, but it provides little in the way of active audience engagement beyond the comments section. The audio platform Clubhouse is great for engagement in the moment, but it is decidedly more difficult to actively learn anything helpful regarding audience engagement.
There are a few newer platforms that are hoping to provide solutions to support the five-step — or “full-stack” — content development process. One of these platforms, Fireside, teased the differences unique to their approach while on stage at Podcast Movement. While the inner workings of Fireside have yet to be officially announced, I was able to look at some of the content that will be launching this month. Below I’ve listed several Fireside programs that I am looking forward to.

This type of content production teases the potential of what’s to come with new forms of interactive entertainment. The audience is in the show, creators from different backgrounds are interacting in new and interesting ways, and these newer forms may well herald the demise of the one-way monologues that have become ubiquitous.
Whether Fireside can capitalize on their ambitious vision remains to be seen, of course. However, there’s no doubt that they’ve assembled an impressive lineup of content creators who are putting their stake in the ground by betting heavily on the Fireside platform.
No matter which technology platforms you use to support your killer content ecosystem, make sure you’re using the tools and technology that support your brand message across all steps of the content creation process. If you know yourself well enough to be sure you’ve stepped outside your comfort zone, consider outsourcing until you get your feet wet.
As new content creators enter the online ecosystem and audiences continue to spread out across more and more diverse platforms, thinking holistically about how to develop, distribute, and monetize your content will become increasingly important to your brand’s success.
Thankfully, our ever-increasing access to technology will serve to support each step of the development lifecycle. It’s not hyperbole to say that the future has never been brighter for content creators, audiences, and brands. Now everyone can become part of the show.


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