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Bill Gates, Vint Cerf, & Marty McFly Agree: Content Is King

Aug 05, 2013

In 1996, Microsoft’s chief, Bill Gates, pounded out a fortune-telling essay using Word 95.  The title of that essay? Content Is King.

Gates must have recently jumped in a DeLorean, hit 88 mph, and went back to 1996 to tell today’s business leaders that one day content would be their most important tool.  He made it perfectly clear, too. 

GatesContent is where I expect much of the real money to be made on the Internet.

The broad opportunities for most companies involve supplying information (content)…. No company is too small to participate.

If people are to be expected to put up with turning on a computer to read a screen, they must be rewarded with deep and extremely up-to-date information that they can explore at will.


Bill: It seems that businesses big and small are finally paying attention.

CerfPersonally, I wasn’t paying attention to content back then, nor did I know about Gates’ essay. That changed in 2000 when I was guided to the importance of content by an even greater modern-day visionary, Vinton Cerf – “the Father of the Internet”. After a lunch meeting at the Google Chief Internet Evangelist’s Virginia home, Vint described to me a future that honestly was far too vast for me to grasp, but like Gates’ essay, it made sense many years later.

“Doug,” Vint said with a subtle smile, “we’ve been working on the framework for an interplanetary Internet for some time now… you know, getting ready for the future.”

Now, that’s a DeLorean hitting 8,888 mph!

He simplified things for me after we entered a door with a curved top that lead to his private wine cellar.  He said, “The Internet – just like an interplanetary Internet – is all about content and content distribution. We need information to get places – even places we can’t get to today – and that information has to be meaningful to its recipients.”

Looking back, it was like Marty McFly telling me to buy stock in Microsoft and Google. Thankfully, we at Lynchpin BioMedia got the message before their proverbial IPOs.  And, whether we knew it at the time or not, we’ve been honing our content marketing skills since then.

Thanks to two visionaries – without whom there would be no Internet and no PC as we know it – we are back to basics: Meaningful content provides value and that makes business thrive.  Or in today’s gobbledygook marketing parlance, “content marketing is a cross-channel, multi-channel marketing tool for all verticals that delivers high-value branding, SEO, lead generation, customer acquisition and thought leadership.”

Personally, I like how Gates put it:  Content is king.



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1 comment
That insight sovels the problem. Thanks!