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The Sound of Silence: Why Your Content Gets Ignored

by Girish Shenoy  |  
July 11, 2014

Marketers know that content is vital for building an audience. But sometimes the most relevant and witty content simply doesn't get traction. It might be the most insightful blog post, but it doesn't spark interaction or engagement with the intended audience.

So what went wrong?

For some insight into why content gets ignored, let's look into a hypothesis called "Warnock's Dilemma," proposed by a man named Bryan Warnock.

He offers five scenarios for why your posts might not gain traction.

1. Nothing more needs to be said

In some cases, you might well have written a well-written post that offers correct and reasonable information. But there isn't controversy in the content, for example, or there's nothing more to be said, so readers aren't compelled to comment.

Consider announcements about new product features. These are typically short and dry posts about bug fixes or enhancements, with mention of the new version number and what it means for the product.

To generate engagement and strike up conversation, such posts should be more customer-centric. Use simple language to plainly state what was changed, why, and the implications: What are the problems that customers face that are corrected by the new version?

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Girish Shenoy is a marketing analyst at Freshdesk, a provider of online customer support and helpdesk solutions.

LinkedIn: Girish Shenoy

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  • by Gary Wollenhaupt Fri Jul 11, 2014 via web

    I will comment here to avoid the irony of no comments on this post despite several hundred views and shares. This post might be a case of No. 1, nothing more needs to be said. Comments are not always the best indicator of the value of content.

    Comments on posts are also related to the culture of the community on the site where the post resides. If there is an active group of of commenters, more posts will have comments.

  • by Peter Scoffham Fri Jul 11, 2014 via web

    Some good points raised here. Sometimes its a case of a company owner or senior management wanting to publish an announcement (eg about a new product, service or office opening)....and whoever publishes it is a "Yes" person that doesn't challenge and help them ask the "So what?" question (refering to your point 5).

    If you don't put yourself in your readers' shoes and ask yourself "So what?" then nobody will care. I don't care if you've opened a new office in AnonyTown...what does it mean to me?

    Benefits, not features people!

  • by Si Gornick - Moovd Sun Jul 13, 2014 via web

    Agree with Gary's points. I'd also add that this. The elephant in the room is the vast content deluge. Google changed the way its algorithms work and the result is more content from everyone. The more content there is, the more quality content gets lost in the mix.

  • by Kimmy Burgess Mon Jul 14, 2014 via web

    Proper content strategy is the main point where consumers and customers can be fetched. Sometime it happens that a proper construction of content can also not help for the site. It needs to be revised and include those prospects which a user wants to read. I agree with all these points.

  • by Steve Faber Tue Jul 15, 2014 via web

    The other problem caused by the "Content Deluge": Just as there is more crap content out there, so is there more excellent content on nearly any subject you'd care to name. Yours may well be top-notch, but they're likely 6 more on the same subject that fit the bill as well. Your challenge? Stand out!

  • by Asuthosh from Wed Jul 16, 2014 via web

    Another oft unconsidered reason is how and where people consume your content. When consumed when on mobile, it's usually difficult to type out comments or provide deeper insight. I might want to comment, but save it for later - only to be forgotten forever. And if I am reading it via a feed reader I don't even see the comment box. Tech needs to catch up to support engagement regardless of platform.

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