A productive and credible relationship with any consumer requires engaging material with enough variety to attract the target audience.
This content must be provided consistently to remain sustainable. Isolated features are quickly lost in the mire of information put out on the web and social media over the course of a single day. Over time, however, reputation is established and perceptions of expertise are generated; creating a following.
The quality of Chael Sonnen’s trash-talk in the build-up to his first clash with Anderson Silva at UFC 117 was nothing short of entertaining, but it was the consistency of this output – the continuous exercise of his ‘character’- even when other stars were in title contention – that cultivated a large appreciation of Sonnen, his verbal wit and physical abilities. Two more title shots, two reality show roles and a broadcast analyst job later, the gains of Sonnen’s content marketing are paying dividends in mass.
The onus is not on the quantity of interest but the quality of it. Attracting higher spending consumer prospects offers a greater high-yield return on effort. Other secondary benefits include the audience opting to share your content-based material with like-minded peers in their own social circles. This expands the content’s exposure to other high-quality consumers, along with the brand name behind output, to improve the marketing campaign’s value.
Examples of this strategy, in MMA media today include The Underground, feature articles on media websites and regular interviews with the sport’s athletes open up a dialogue with fans. The positive ambition behind MMA’s digital community often converts casual fans into regular viewers. It these positive qualities in MMA fans that reward efforts to entertain the MMA community. Another example, fans shared their knowledge of ‘The Tommy Toe Hold Show’ on Youtube long before the creator had the resources to promote himself through sponsorship. Now TTTHS is able to reward that loyalty py providing regular content with the same features that made it so popular in the first place.
I truly believe that practicing a martial art discipline improves an individual’s outlook on life. The gruelling trials of grappling and striking shed any sense of ego and promote a more humble, healthy and grateful attitude towards living. This often translates into the MMA community, which frequently exhibits an intelligence towards the sport, a respect towards the fighters and an appreciation of the content provided by all organisations. In this environment, there’s less hostility towards good-natured, well-intended efforts to entertain. Even when these efforts fail, supporters of MMA are wise enough to learn that nobody is perfect all the time, and this is where content marketing in MMA presents itself as having little to no downside.
Certainly, there are other technical elements to embrace – tools to help attract initial intrigue; keywords, meta-details, hyperlink exchanges with reliable domains. Balancing quality content with technical proficiency is integral to thriving digital communication. These tactics translate to a heightened awareness of the brand and sense of feeling valued as a consumer.
When a fighter is only profiled a few times a year, or looking to develop a career outside of the cage, social media and digital marketing are two of the best weapons in their arsenal. By voicing an appreciation of a talent’s work – inside or outside of competition – through the simplest gesture of a ‘like’ or ‘retweet’, we can have a profound effect on the existence of this sport and the people who work so hard to entertain us – the fans.