Every time we are introduced to a new client and have the chance to work with them, we feel fortunate - and especially when in working with the client, we discover them to be wonderfully interesting and passionate people. Such is the case with our recent adventure with the good folks at McSweeney's.
McSweeney's is a completely unique online publisher whose activities range from the traditional, like publishing books, to the most modern of all, an online daily humor site that operates almost every day. Like many people operating in the online space, and especially in the ever changing world of online journalism and content creation, we started working with McSweeney's two months ago and quickly identified some things they wanted to learn more about and some areas where they thought they could improve.
Of course, what we did and how we did it and what is already showing signs of improvement is all confidential, but there are two things that I wanted to share.
First, every time we are lucky enough to do an ABC project for a client, we always learn something - more on that in a minute, and every time we do an ABC project, honestly, we are reminded why this works so well for people. (We won't put words in McSweeney's mouths, but we see them in their office in San Francisco nodding yes. Honest.)
The online world in 2016 is an ever-changing mix of trends, data, strategy and thought. It's so fluid and there is so much to do, that it is really impossible for folks to be able to operate online and then also step back and plan for the future.
We step up ABC as a 60 day project - and this actually was one of the first, and most important things, that we learned early on when we completed the project for folks like the San Francisco Ballet or Rainforest Alliance. You have to have long enough to do the work, and you have to be also be able to keep every one focused and energetic about the program and the plan. Working with the team at McSweeney's, we plowed through an enormous amount of work and learning in those 60 days, delivering close to four hundreds pages of presentations, data and learning.
We completed A - an audit for both the core McSweeney's site and for The Believer. We also completed a very tactical and confidential A and B project which we hope will let McSweeney's keep doing all the great work they are doing.
And we learned one thing (again.)
McSweeney's like many online publishers and especially one with a traditional publishing side as well, faces an uphill battle for readers and content and they can't always invest what they wish in their properties and programs. But as a glance at Similar Web will show you, they do really really well.
The reason for their success is not massive marketing budgets or a huge email program, it's great content plain and simple. Their Facebook audience is relatively small, their Twitter followers not the largest, but when you create great, great content day in and day out - you win the Internet.
So thank you to everyone at McSweeney's for the last couple of months - we look forward to helping and watching you grow more in the future. And thank you most of all for the clear reminder, content is still king.
Still reading and not quite sure what A B C is? Check out this great read by Common Sense founder, James Cannon Boyce, "The Cure To Adsanity"