By Joe Pulizzi published November 3, 2012

Failed Content Marketing Predictions Revealed

content marketing predictionsYes, we are beginning our fifth year in the content marketing predictions business (for the record, here are 2009, 20102011, and the 2012 predictions). 

Now, before we go any further, I WANT YOUR PREDICTION for 2013. More than 75 brave souls gave their predictions last year, and I’d like to add yours to the mix for next year. Just click on this link (sorry prediction submissions is now closed) and complete the form. Predictions need to be no more than 75 words and must be completed by November 10th. All contributors get lots of link love and recognition for their courage.

Content marketing predictions that worked

Before we make fun of the predictions that didn’t work, let’s look at some of the clear successes:

  • For 2009, Ann Handley from MarketingProfs predicted that, “An increasing number of journalists find themselves out of work at traditional newspapers, which continue to struggle with sustaining their business. Good news: The writers find a home as “content producers” and “content managers” on the corporate side, in companies of all shapes and sizes.” Ann was 100% correct, and we continue to see this trend.
  • For 2010, David Meerman Scott predicted that, “The phrase “social media” will soon be considered obsolete as more and more organizations publish online content.” I’m giving David a thumbs up on this bold prediction, simply because so many thought leaders mentioned at Content Marketing World 2012 that the term is getting stale.
  • For 2011, Valeria Maltoni stated that, “…brand marketers will begin to rediscover the power of sophisticated email list management.” There is no doubt relevant email is more powerful than ever. Just ask LinkedIn, Google, and Twitter.
  • For 2012, Paul Conley predicted that, “Public-relations departments and advertising agencies will make a big move into content marketing.” Uh, Paul… you got that right.

Failed content marketing predictions

Over the past four years, there have been more than 500 content marketing predictions submitted. Some have been great, and some… well, let’s just take a look at a few from last year that didn’t quite hit the mark:

  • Last year, I boldly predicted that Facebook would easily eclipse the $100 billion market cap for its public stock offering. As of this writing, Facebook is at a mere $45 billion. Egg on my face.
  • My good friend Scott Frangos, as well as Ana Hoffman, predicted that Google+ would become incredibly important for B2B marketers in 2012. Well, yes, according to our B2B content marketing research, Google+ as a distribution platform rose from 13 percent in 2011 to 39 percent in 2012. That said, no one is quite sure if anyone saw that content.
  • Ali Goldfield predicted that more marketers would begin blogging directly on Google+ and that a big year for Google+ brand pages was clearly ahead of us. Again, not so much.
  • Ambal Balakrishnan eloquently predicted that, “Mobile will be the name of the game in 2012… with the explosive growth of smartphones and tablets.” I’ll mark that one a 50 percent correct — yes to the explosive growth, but also no, due to the fact that marketers are still trying to tap the potential of mobile (even though mobile content distribution increased from 15 percent to 33 percent, year-over-year).
  • And finally, Celine Francisco predicted that content marketing jobs would be at their peak. Great prediction Celine, but I honestly don’t think we’ve seen a glimpse of the robust job market for content marketing jobs. It’s only just begun.

But let’s leave the predictions for next month. Please insert your 2013 prediction here, and look for our full report on the 2013 content marketing predictions next month.

Find out more on the strides that content marketing is making across the media landscape on Content Marketing Institute’s Research page. 

Image via Bigstock.

Author: Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi considers himself the poster boy for content marketing. Founder of the Content Marketing Institute, Joe evangelizes content marketing around the world through keynotes, articles, tweets and his books, Managing Content Marketing and Get Content Get Customers. Joe's latest book is Epic Content Marketing (McGraw-Hill). If you want to get on his good side, send him something orange. For more on Joe, check out his personal site or follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi.

Other posts by Joe Pulizzi

  • michaelbrenner

    Brilliant Joe. You have my prediction.

  • NenadSenic

    I dared to make a prediction too this year. Good luck to all of us. :)

  • Scott Frangos

    I have now dared to make another “safer” prediction, but you know — I still have faith in G+ and also see it affecting author search results and B2C local business results since they combined the maps business pages with the G+ business page. Not a complete fizzle, but not yet as strong as I thought it would be a year ago.

  • http://www.globalcopywriting.com/ globalcopywrite

    I’m in!

  • http://www.lattice-engines.com/ Amanda Maksymiw (@amandamaks)

    Oh no! I missed this somehow. Is it too late?