Monday, November 29, 2010

2011: "Brands That Share" Are Shaking the Zeitgeist

First a short story:

Even before he had heard the terms "content marketing" or "content curation," a colleague of mine intuited the value of “brand as expert.”

My friend went to a client for whom he had provided highly successful PR for years and urged them to stop generating profit for trade media. “Why not replace your PR investment with content hosted on your own site?” he suggested. “It really makes no sense to pay to have all these articles written and placed in for-profit publishing enterprises. They get paid by advertisers who want to wrap their message in your company's expertise.” The client agreed and a daily blog launched. Shortly thereafter, the project was handed off to the website developer as fodder for SEO.

I’ve urged my colleague to get a better handle on Brands That Share™ and I'd advise any marketer to do the same. To begin:

a) Read Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman’s new book Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business. Ann is editor at the highly successful MarketingProfs and C.C. is one of social media’s earliest adopters.

b) Check out this article. Published in July by Steve Rosenbaum, founder and CEO of Magnify.Net. This article says,We're standing at the end of an era. ‘Mass Media' -- the ability to reach large segments of the population with a single message -- is essentially over. For advertisers, the need to find content in context, and to have that context be appropriate for their message and their brand is critical. So, Curation replaces Creation as the coin of the realm for advertiser-safe environments. No longer can advertisers simply default to big destination sites. The audience is too diffuse and the need to filter and organize quality crowd-created content is too critical.”

c) To further grasp the role of content in marketing, read this blog by C.C. about Zappos, a company that everyone pretty much agrees "gets it." In short, C.C. says Zappos is FULL of Content.

d) Consider this blog from Media Post discussing how people are engaging with brands via social media, namely (and I quote): The last couple months have brought a wave of data suggesting that a substantial proportion of online social network members use their profiles to engage with brands in some way -- including recommending or criticizing a product or service to other people, and engaging with the brand itself for customer service issues. In addition to confirming many of these earlier findings, the latest study, sponsored by Performics and performed by ROI Research, also found that a good number of social net users want more online offers and information from brands.” [Emphasis added]

e) Get familiar with Rohit Bhargava's Influential Marketing Blog, including posts like this on content curation (and don't pass up the comments).

Right now, the zeitgeist is chattering and the evidence is growing on multiple fronts: content marketing, content curation.....bzzzzzzzz..

p.s. Ian Greenleigh makes a plausible case against content curation .. well, at least against yakking about it. He's got a point. Better to tinker more, talk less. Thanks, Ian.

-- scrubbed by Marketing Brillo

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