Introducing Meat Content

Filet mignon

Meat is critical to the nutrition of your brand.

Over the past year, we’ve talked a lot about web content and ways to improve it in higher ed. And while those conversations have been great, we think we’ve identified a more pressing topic deserving of our attention. And that topic is meat.

A highly advanced analysis of popular topics among the higher ed web community showed that bacon is among the most discussed topics. However, upon closer evaluation, we came to understand that bacon was only part of it — the juicy object, if you will. We realized that, holistically speaking, the real issue was all meat.

All meat deserves our attention, and higher ed is doing a woefully poor job of attending to this core business function. With that in mind, we are refocusing Meet Content around the subject of meat. Lamb, pork, chicken, beef — all meat is critical to the nutrition of our brand.

Here are some of the core tenets we believe should guide higher ed in creating and sustaining effective meat content.

Goals Before Tools

We’re tired of seeing people focus on the tool. Yes, bacon is great and can do many things. Same for hamburgers and steaks and bratwurst. But why bacon? Why brats? Are we not hitting our protein numbers? Is this the type of meat the promotes that most engagement? And which meat is best for which audience? There are several pressing questions such as these that we feel have not been adequately addressed, which is why we are recommitting our mission to answering them.

"Meat Content First!"

In some projects, meat planning is often put off until the very end (or, in some cases, ignored completely). This leads to an urgent, last-minute scramble for meat, resulting in highly unsatisfactory brown ‘n serve sausage procured at the corner store, or (if you’re lucky) some hickory-cured beef jerky.

We advocate a “Meat Content First” approach. When planning meals, place meat at the top of your list.

Develop a Meat Content Strategy

There are several components to an effective meat content strategy:

  • Conduct regular refrigerator audits to assess the state and quality of your meat. (How can you know what to prepare for dinner if you don’t know what you have in the freezer?)
  • Use a calendar to ensure you are consistently preparing relevant meat products for all meals—breakfast, lunch, dinner, brunch, supper, midnight snack and elevenses.
  • Measure the effectiveness of your meat, but don’t take numbers like temperature at face value. Dig deeper and consider taste, tenderness and juiciness, as well.
  • An effective meat content strategy will employ a variety of meat content types. With beef, for instance, consider rib eye, T-bone, top round, porterhouse and chuck. Is your meat salted, brined, barbecued, marinated, cured or roasted?

Meat Is a Process, Not a Project

After careful review of meat practices across higher ed, we have a radical theory to propose. There is a widely held belief that meat needs to be done, sometimes even well done. But meat is never done. Meat is a process; not a project.

We need to create a governance plan that ensures our meat stays fresh over time. That said, we must also keep in mind that undercooked meat can be extremely damaging — not just to your brand but to your life. How do we balance these objectives? A successful meat content strategy will address this.

The Steakholder Gap

One of the biggest problems in higher ed is a gap between practitioners and steakholders. The practitioners often do not understand the needs and motivations of the steakholders, and the steakholders often do not understand the concerns of the practitioners (or why they are so hungry).

We need to close this gap and foster understanding between the practitioners and the steakholders in higher ed. Also, spelling is important.

Well, Actually…

So, truth be told, we like meat, but not that much. (And what about our valued vegetarian and vegan readers?) We hope you enjoyed this April 1 diversion. We’ll resume our regularly scheduled programming with our next post.

Photo by sanctumsolitude/Flickr Creative Commons.

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About Rick Allen and Georgy Cohen

Rick Allen has worked in higher education for over twelve years, helping to shape web communications and content strategy. As principal of ePublish Media, a web publishing consultancy in Boston, Mass., Rick works with knowledge-centric organizations to create and sustain effective web content.

Georgy Cohen is associate creative director, content strategy, at OHO Interactive, a digital agency based in the Boston area. Previously, she worked in content roles at Tufts University, Suffolk University, and her independent consultancy to higher ed, Crosstown Digital Communications.

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