This Week in Content Marketing: Apple and Amazon Race to Content Dominance

By Joe Pulizzi


PNR: This Old Marketing with Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose can be found on both iTunes and Stitcher.

This week, Robert and I discuss Apple’s launch into the content creation business. We also explain why we feel publishers are still too focused on their channel strategies, and explore how Spotify’s launch into original podcasts could set it up to be purchased by Amazon in the near future. Our rants and raves include the future of print and the failure of advertising tech; then we close with an example of the week from a company that refused to go extinct.

This week’s show

(Recorded live on February 18, 2017; Length: 1:06:39)

Download this week’s PNR This Old Marketing podcast.

If you enjoy our PNR podcasts, we would love if you would rate it, or post a review, on iTunes.

1. Notable news and upcoming trends

  • Apple launches a TV show, but won’t buy a media company (06:00): Planet of the Apps (which Business Insider has termed, “Shark Tank for apps”) is Apple’s first foray into the world of original content. According to Recode, the move is primarily a play to distinguish Apple Music from top competitor, Spotify. While I believe the company’s out-and-out denial that it’s in the market for a media company is merely a strategic deflection, Robert and I agree that it would be foolish for Apple to categorically ignore the tremendous opportunity that acquiring a media business could present.

5 Research Insights to Drive Your Content Marketing

By Lisa Murton Beets


Now in its seventh year, the Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs annual survey of content marketers has evolved with the times. In 2010, content marketing was little more than a buzzword. Most marketers dabbling in the approach were curious about the tactics (e.g., blogging, webinars, events) their peers were using and how well those tactics were working.

Sure, we’re still interested in tactics … but there is so much more to consider now. Content marketing has grown into a complex business discipline composed of many distinct areas — content creation, strategy, distribution, paid promotion, and measurement, to name a few. Managers have to determine the best ways to organize content marketing across the enterprise, how much budget they need, and the mix of roles required to pull it off. There’s always something new to learn.

Here are five key insights based on the responses of 1,102 B2B marketers in North America — representing a wide range of industries, company sizes, and content marketing maturity levels — as reported in B2B Content Marketing 2017 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America.

1. What drives success

Sixty-two percent of B2B marketers say their organization’s overall approach to content marketing is much more or somewhat more successful than one year ago.


When asked about the factors contributing to that success, two appear to be most influential: more effective content creation and developing/adjusting content marketing strategy. (In past years, survey respondents indicated content creation issues were among their top content marketing challenges, so it’s reassuring to see progress on this front.)

#Contentmarketing success: Higher quality, more efficient content; strategy creation/adjustment. @LisaBeets
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How this insight can help

Consider how well …read more

Source:: content marketing

Content Technologies: How to Realize the Promises and Avoid the Pitfalls

By Marcia Riefer Johnston


Content technologies. Can’t live with ‘em; can’t live without ‘em. How can marketers take advantage of the promises while avoiding the pitfalls – or at least tip the scales in favor of the promises?

We recently put that question to the folks speaking at the Intelligent Content Conference March 28–30 in Las Vegas. One warning came up over and over: Don’t expect technology itself to solve your problems. As Marketoonist Tom Fishburne recently said, “Trying to make an organization ‘customer-centric’ through technology alone is relying on pixie dust.”

Trying to make an org ‘customer-centric’ through technology alone is relying on pixie dust, says @tomfishburne.
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You’ll find our speakers’ advice grouped under these headings:

  • Don’t fall for the trap of technology as solution
  • Use artificial intelligence to deepen your insights but not to replace them
  • Safeguard the security and privacy of customer data
  • Choose technology that you can use fully
  • Hire people who can make the most of your systems – and the content put there
  • Keep up with the tech changes
  • Try before you buy

Don’t fall for the trap of technology as solution

The promise is that technology allows humans to be better humans. It allows knowledge workers to be better at gaining and sharing knowledge. It allows designers to design, writers to write, and producers to produce content with better, faster, stronger, more consistent output. It supports collaboration, data-driven results, visibility, accessibility, connectivity, and intelligence.

Yet the success or failure of all marketing and content technology is determined by people, processes, and strategy.

Common pitfalls to avoid when rolling out content technology:

  • Be careful not to ask your team to change their processes too much too soon. Make your team’s life easier; don’t add more work to their day.
  • Keep it simple so people will use it with little pain.
  • For each person who will use …read more

    Source:: content marketing

Elevate Your Marketing Career: 5 Ways to Invest in You

By Michele Linn


Editor’s note: With so many things requiring your attention, it’s tough to know how to spend your time. This update of a previously published post shares one suggestion of how you should invest your time.


That’s the topic of my post today. You.

Last year, I participated in a panel for the Detroit Content Strategy Meetup, and one of the questions posed by our moderator, Chris Moritz, was this:

Considering all of the changes in the industry, what is one thing that all content professionals need to be focused on?

Perhaps surprisingly, the three panelists all had similar answers: We all need to focus on how we can elevate our roles in our organizations.

And this is just as important today as it was one year ago.

We all need to focus on how we can elevate our roles in our organizations via @michelelinn #contentmarketing
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When I answered, I was channeling our very own Robert Rose whose Intelligent Content Conference keynote talk continually creeps into my mind:

Look up. Your future does not lie in changing content to fit the business. The future of content will be your ability to change the business … You are the future of business.

The future of #content will be your ability to change the business. YOU = future of business via @robert_rose
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But, I was surprised that the other panelists said the same thing as well.

I’m such a big proponent of each of us taking the reins of our careers and making them what we want them to be (it’s why each of us needs a point of view). Those of us who have worked in marketing for a long time have likely been in situations where we have simply taken direction from others to “create that brochure” or …read more

Source:: content marketing

Major Changes Come to Content Marketing World 2017

By Joe Pulizzi


A few months after every Content Marketing World, I review each and every survey response about the event. In 2016, about 800 of the 3,600 attendees completed the survey. I always start with the good stuff – what did you like best, who was your favorite speaker. It’s like watching a video with both babies and puppies at one time.

Then, I find a quiet place to go through all the constructive feedback. Don’t get me wrong, I love hearing all the ways that we can improve or where we didn’t quite hit the mark. But I have to say, it does sting a bit. When you put everything into an event, one that is planned over a year in advance, and some people don’t like it, it hurts. It’s like whatever the opposite is of watching a baby/puppy video.

But I digress. (And yes, this post digresses from our articles’ usual prescriptive focus. Of course, it offers a universal lesson for all content marketers – listen to your audience and give them what they want.)

Listen to your audience and give them what they want, says @joepulizzi. #CMWorld
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I have a notebook full of every piece of critical feedback from the year before, and then I categorize the issues to identify consensus around big issues that we need to tackle for the next year. That’s what this post is about – a list of what you (our audience) believe that we (CMI) need to cover more seriously in 2017, AND what we are doing about it.

(This a shortened list of key topics for Content Marketing World 2017. The full list is too long to include today. We will be adding it and more to the event site,, shortly. We host an event-specific <a class="colorbox" …read more

Source:: content marketing

4 Content Marketing Things That Turn Off Your Audience

By Neil Patel


To fully capitalize your content marketing, you need to click with your audience.

Unfortunately, not all that many content marketers fully realize the effectiveness of their programs – only one-third rate their content marketing strategy as extremely or very effective, according to CMI 2017 B2B research.

Part of the reason for this phenomenon is simply because many content marketers unknowingly engage in tactics that create disconnects with their audience.

In other words, some of those tactics are a turnoff.

Here are some specific ways you can disrupt the relationship-building process and how to fix those problems.

Turnoff 1: Making it about you, not your audience

The purpose of content marketing is to provide valuable, relevant content and to build rapport with your audience. For this reason, your content needs to be audience-centric, and it needs to be useful.

Your #content needs to be audience-centric, and it needs to be useful, says @NeilPatel.
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As a brand, it can be tempting to focus on topics that you’re interested in but which aren’t necessarily of interest to your audience. For example, you may be intrigued with industry trends and decide to create blog posts, white papers, infographics, etc., about them. But if they don’t resonate with your audience, you’re going to see little to no effectiveness. In some cases, it can even drive a wedge between you and your audience.

Here’s a visual representation of what happens when companies talk about what they’re interested in rather than what their audience wants to hear.


Image source

As you can see, the farther you get from audience-centric content, the less impact your content will have.

But when you focus on the topics near and dear to your audience, your content …read more

Source:: content marketing

Simple Tips for Sleuthing Your Site Performance Using Google Analytics

By Jodi Harris

Applied analytics 2017 cover

Editor’s note: Google Analytics is one of the most critical evaluation tools to aid your web-based content. This back-by-popular-demand post has been updated to continue detailing how to measure up for maximum effect.

How do you measure up when it comes to measuring the impact and value of the content you are publishing?

Fortunately, for most questions you may have about your content’s performance, there’s a way to find the answer – and very often, that answer can be found through Google Analytics.

Chances are you already use this robust tool to track key metrics like website visits, page views, and bounce rates. But Google Analytics can also uncover deeper, more-actionable insights that can paint a clearer picture of the results your content is achieving now and reveal critical opportunities to make improvements – if you know how to track them down and analyze those insights.­

To help you do just that, we created an e-book, How to Apply Analytics Data to Make Better Content Marketing Decisions, based on the top-rated presentation Orbit Media co-founder Andy Crestodina delivered at Content Marketing World 2015. But, as Google is constantly evolving its search products and marketing solutions, we thought it a good idea to revisit our initial discussion, and share more details that may help you gauge and optimize performance more effectively.

Turn data into decisions

As Andy asserts in the e-book, analytics are particularly valuable when used as a decision-support tool – a way of answering your key questions about what’s working, what isn’t, and what actions you should take as a result. To do this, he recommends following a simple, five-step process:

  1. Formulate an idea about your content performance.
  2. Determine a question you can ask to support this idea.
  3. Create the report that will provide the appropriate data to answer that question.
  4. Take action based on your …read more

    Source:: content marketing

This Week in Content Marketing: Medium Picked the Wrong Business Model

By Joe Pulizzi


PNR: This Old Marketing with Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose can be found on both iTunes and Stitcher.

In this episode, Robert and I discuss Super Bowl commercials, some Valentine’s Day content, and Snapchat’s all-important IPO. We also explore the new subscription model Medium is pursuing, and conclude that it has chosen unwisely. Our rants and raves include dark content marketing and e-newsletters; then we close out the show with an example of the week on influential entrepreneur Sara Spencer Washington.

This week’s show

(Recorded live on February 13, 2017; Length: 0:56:32)

Download this week’s PNR This Old Marketing podcast.

If you enjoy our PNR podcasts, we would love if you would rate it, or post a review, on iTunes.

1. Notable news and upcoming trends

  • Super Bowl commercials drop the ball (08:20): Robert and I spend a few minutes talking about the ads that aired during the big game, each of which cost upwards of $5 million. In contrast to the game itself, this year’s offerings were a yawn-fest for us, though we each came up with a short list of notable exceptions.
  • 8 things marketers need to know about Snapchat’s IPO (15:39): AdAge brings us a rundown of just-disclosed details on the social network as part of its recent IPO filings. What surprised me most is that Snapchat refers to itself as “a camera company.” Could this be its way of pivoting so that it’s no longer in direct competition with Instagram? As we see it, Snapchat’s next challenge will be to find a product to deliver to the subscriber base it has …read more

    Source:: content marketing

6 Steps to Find the Perfect Content Marketing Pro

By Joe Griffin


If your organization hasn’t emphasized deliberate content marketing – meaning, there’s no documented strategy with tangible goals and metrics – now is the time to find someone who can take your company to the next level.

But how do you find that right someone? It might take a little time, but if you follow this six-step process, you’ll find a stellar marketer who will help your brand benefit from content marketing.

Step 1: Define your needs

Consider what sort of employee you need. While this varies from one organization to the next, general skills that you should seek include:

  • Storyteller – Given that this marketer will be responsible for the story your organization tells the world, find somebody with a passion for storytelling who can recognize nuggets of information that can become compelling stories.
  • Risk-taker – Your organization will never gain an advantage if your content marketing does all the same things your competitors do. A good content marketer will be able to help your organization tell its story in new ways and new places. You just have to be willing to let your content marketer explore and take calculated risks.
  • Hustler – Talent means little if an individual isn’t willing to continually learn and actively seek ways to improve the organization’s standing. The world of content marketing is constantly evolving, and those who keep up with trends are those who see success.

Talent means little if a #content marketer isn’t willing to continually learn, says @JoeGriffin. #hiring
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Step 2: Write and place the ad

The job posting should:

  • Communicate the skills needed. You defined the skills you want this person to possess; now put them up high in the job posting.

Want to Scale Up Your Content Operations? 4 Things to Think Big About [Infographic]

By Marcia Riefer Johnston


Let’s say for some time you single-handedly make something that people love to consume: cinnamon buns, maybe, or content. You decide to go big with your operations and bring more bliss into the world. Boatloads of bliss. We’re talking content (or cinnamon buns) galore. We’re talking more than simply doing more of what you’re doing.

We’re talking scaling up.

You need to do more than throw more people at the situation. To handle increased complexity, you need updated processes, new strategies, and more automation.

For example, in Automating Content Reuse: One Marketing Team’s Story, Jen Brass Jenkins tells the story of the content teams at the University of Utah Health Care system who are revamping the way they create, tag, distribute, and manage their content so they can reuse their content in smarter ways and get it in front of more readers.

Boatloads of readers.

Many marketers dream of accomplishing something like this; they just aren’t sure how to make it happen. The CMI editorial team recently asked the folks slated to speak at the Intelligent Content Conference (March 28-30 in Las Vegas) to share their favorite ideas, tips, and tools on scaling content operations. Read on for the answers, which fall loosely into these topic areas:

  • Think big about your people
  • Think big about your processes
  • Think big about your strategy
  • Think big about your information systems

Think big about your people

Create content potlucks! How? Invite content developers across the organization ­– technical writers, professional service consultants, trainers, support engineers, and so on – to participate in online communities. This is a low-cost way to build relationships and discuss the value of applying content marketing principles to all types of content.

You’ll discover ways that subject-matter experts can contribute to blog posts, videos, and forums, building credibility with prospective and existing customers alike. Customers like to …read more

Source:: content marketing