Content is King. Or is it?3 min read

Is content king?

To me, that seems like a silly question. “Content is king” is a metaphor, but apparently not a very good one.

A good metaphor creates instant understanding. Given the amount of confusion and debate, the phrase “content is king” is not doing all that great a job in the instant-understanding department.

I think it’s smarter to say that content is indispensable. It’s what people go online to find, and it’s what Google loves. There are only a few online marketing models that don’t require valuable content, and those few are getting tougher by the day, and result in no long-term assets.

But if you really want to stick with this “content is king” thing, let’s see if we can tease out the analogy a bit.

Great content cannot be king without more. Why?

Because it has no kingdom. It may be of royal birth, but it’s not on the throne.

In fact, the throne is ruthlessly occupied by Queen Inattention. She rules the online land with an iron hand, and her subjects become more loyal to her daily.

Your content has a right to the throne thanks to its valuable information, clever hook and killer headline. But brave and loyal allies are needed to create an insurrection against Queen Inattention. These allies are not impersonal Facebook “friends,” they’re real friends and colleagues, and they believe in you and your content.

These allies work with you to inform the masses of the coming of King Content.

Finally, as the masses recognize the royal birthright of King Content, they rise up in revolt. Queen Inattention is deposed and exiled to a lonely island, while King Content ascends to the throne he so rightfully deserves.

Now that King Content is in charge, he can’t rest easy. If he cannot inspire his subjects to action and fill the royal coffers while improving the well-being of the entire kingdom, all will be for naught.

And word just arrived that Queen Inattention has escaped her island exile.

Now, this may well be the goofiest thing I’ve ever written. But hey, I’m not the one who came up with this “content is king” thing. I’m just working with what I was given.

The point is… it’s social media. Yes, content is indispensable, but the entire environment is powered by people. If you have no people on your side, your content isn’t king… it’s just a lonely loser with delusions of grandeur.

Content marketing is all about communication. You need to attract the attention of prospects and communicate your subject matter expertise.

But before you can do that, often you’re going to have to communicate the value of your content to friendly allies and maybe even a stranger or three. And finally, you’ve got to be able to take that crucial next step and communicate why your readers should do business with you.

When you look at it that way, isn’t communication king? Perhaps so, but these types of metaphors tend to be a royal pain.

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Cristian Mihai
Became Internet famous by the age of 23. Never recovered. I write short author bios all over the web. I’m an acquired taste. Don’t like me? Acquire some taste.
Articles: 143


  1. Now that’s a metaphor. And a much better use of phonetic alliteration (is that technical or did I make it up?) – communication is King. I really like it.

  2. I agree communication is king! You have to talk and support others

  3. It’s a goofy metaphor, but it’s right on point!

  4. I really enjoyed reading this! Goofy, funny, and yet informative! 👏
    You had me laughing at “a royal pain”

  5. Good points written in a fun way. I’m like the commenter above–“royal pain”–ha!

  6. Wow, that metaphor escalated as quickly as King William I’s rise to power! Quite an interesting piece!

  7. I really enjoyed reading this. It is always great to support an argument with an example and how fitting is King Content? Brilliant.

  8. What an amazing post! I think it’s smarter to say that content is indispensable. Thanks!

  9. My imagination had been shaken. 😂 Nice plot about the King and Queen! This really says about the importance of social networking.

    Thanks for the reminder! I must work on it. Real bad..

  10. I resonate with your post. I firmly feel that the primary takeaway from “content is king,” is that it need have a quality and robust substance, a throne, nucleus, focus. Though, it is one comm, and that doesn’t place it directly in context. It is alone, hence your “it needs more.” And, in the context of the Queen of Inattention, “let them eat cake” kinds of disconnection get bred

    “Content is King” only applies to… that there need be substance, robust substance, though doesn’t inherently track much further standalone.

    Comms are king, relationships of engagement from content is important, though to herald out a single aspect into the throne… yes, that is a royal pain, a royal pain to be edited out.

  11. And, a King or Queen can be an intensely interesting person, an intensely entertaining and wise/teaching and inspiring person. There, possibly content can be King, though the teaching and wise and interesting parts all in ply engagement. Nothing in a vacuum is anything but isolated. And, isolated content does not rule, does even mete or measure or parse out substance or effective influence.

    I like the way you played the allegory through. Queen Inattention. Solid.

  12. Not goofy or silly at all, Jordan. It’s a truism that I will take to heart and remember to remind myself every time I sit down to postpone my blog. “If you have no people on your side, your content isn’t king… it’s just a lonely loser with delusions of grandeur.” No lonely loser here!!

  13. Great post! I really love the royal style.

  14. This was exactly what I needed to hear Jordan. Thanks! 😉

    I like to make connections with my content and this is always my primary focus when writing. Will I connect with people? Is it worthy of reading?

    Inspiring (and entertaining) lesson!

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