At the heart of Darwin’s theory was the idea that each species adapts to its environment. From this process of change, new species arise. This theory has relevance to marketers seeking to spread their message in a changing marketplace; let’s call it marketing evolution.

While on a journey aboard the HMS Beagle, Darwin observed that every island of the Galapagos had its own type of finch. While these birds were closely familiar, they differed in subtle, but important ways. This holds truth when a marketer attempts to distribute their message across various platforms.

Darwin theorized that organisms best suited to their environment had a greater chance of survival and reproduction. They passed along their key survival characteristics to their offspring

Today’s marketers distributing brand messages through multiple platforms are prone to Darwin’s theory. Competing for attention in each channel, key “survival traits” are necessary to be optimally successful. Context and relevance matter — if they are neglected, the message disappears and the brand faces extinction.

Below are 5 theories Darwin outlined in On the Origin of Species, and how they apply to content marketing evolution:

1) Evolution “While species come and go through time, they change during their existence”: Branding and marketing isn’t new. Brands have always relied content to survive. But, content has evolved over time. It started as stories told around the fire to teach and entertain family and friends. Make sure your brand can evolve with the times. The best way to accomplish this is to use stories about your business. Story-building is how consumers will remember your brand.

2) Common Descent “While organisms descend from one or more common ancestors, they diversify from the original stock”: Diversify your content! Use various techniques – text, photos, info-graphics, videos, etc…

3) Species Multiply “Diversification involves the population of one species changing until they become two distinct species”: Allow your brand message to multiply. Create subsequent content around your core brand and products. Your brand will take on exponential lives.

4) Gradualism “New species don’t occur suddenly. Rather evolutionary alterations happen with small incremental changes inside populations”: Content distribution is not effective simply by getting it out there. Adapt it powerfully for each platform and channel.

5) Natural Selection “Evolution occurs due to differences between individual species therefore some variations provide improved chances for survival”: Just as natural selection affects species competition, each piece of marketing content struggles for attention. Success is not about mass volume attention but about the most relevant content to the most relevant consumer. Create content that ensures that. Successful messages survive.

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