I had great joy recently in getting to the end of the award-winning marathon TV series ‘Breaking Bad’ which takes an earthy view on the world of chemistry. And design being what it is, you may have noticed lately the creative nod to the Periodic Table which has materialised.

Anyway, so what has this got to do with anything?

On my recent travels around the world of content I came across a number of articles focusing on ‘big’ subjects – nothing new about that but tagged onto the end was a different word – Content. Now, nothing unusual with this as we have been inundated with ‘Big Data’ over the past few years ever since every man and his dog realised that the internet of everything was strangely generating an enormous, never ending volume of structured and unstructured data.

Now, chemistry is all about balance. Too much of one substance and a stable solution can easily become unstable and explosive (see BB S1, Ep6). It’s a fine line.

With ‘content’, for me the fine line has been breached. Marketers in their finest hour of desperately trying to establish differentiation have contrived the concept of ‘Big content’. At least ‘Big’ is not being abused in this instance – it just means ‘a lot of something’ – in reality ‘Big Content’ feels like JUST MORE F*C*ING CRAP to wade through.

It got me thinking as to what was happening in the real world. Call me old fashioned but simply putting ‘Big’ in front of it is hardly clever or innovative. So I developed a hypothesis and asked our Social Media team to investigate further because the data never lies. My hypothesis in the style of a chemical formula goes something like this (bD/Qu)/Qnty + (bC/Qu)/Qnty = BN where bD is Big Data, Qu is Quality (determines by shares), Qnty is absolute volume, bC is Big Content and BN is Big Noise. BN can be considered the Content Quotient (CQ) of our industry marketing news.

So I asked them to look at my content universe, which may well be your universe too!

We looked at all the articles that were distributed through to me over a four week period from all the tech/marketing/content/digital journals. We found 354 unique references to Big Data (bD) with 22,354 total references with 26 references to Big Content (bC) with 934 total references. Having crunched the numbers, we found a BN CQ of 14.07. Now we all know that a BN CQ of 3.2 or more is above industry accepted levels so maybe it’s about time to take action.  Some of the data highlights as follows:

  • 86% repetition of bD (mentioned at least five times in each article)
  • 22% of articles mentioned both bD and bC
  • 4.6% of articles were ‘shared’ more than 3 times
  • 100% of articles referred to ‘big’ something

As a result of this, we will look to creating a Bloody Big Cloud (BbC) that will store and archive all the BN. Either way, I would sum this up as an unstable, volatile, hostile marketing situation and the antidote is more Qu to counter the Qnty!

Happy marketing.

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