In this episode, Robert and I debate whether or not Google+ is closing its doors, come to grips with the fact that consumers now use the web more than watching television, explore LinkedIn’s latest move to accommodate branded content, and speculate on potential acquisitions that could further the publisher’s goals. Plus, we share this week’s content marketing rants, raves, listener questions, and a #ThisOldMarketing example from Indium Manufacturing.
This week’s show
(Recorded live on April 28, 2014; Length: 1:02:20)
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1. Content Marketing in the News
- Google+: On Death Watch or Already Among the Walking Dead? (1:59): Articles from The Guardian and TechCrunch report that Google’s Vic Gunotra, the company’s top champion for Google+, is leaving the company and other key staff are being redeployed to other business units within the search engine giant. Robert and I agree that this is further evidence against building content on “rented land.” Google+, like other social media networks, is quickly evolving into a media platform — a distribution channel for content. As such, it isn’t as valuable as it once was to content marketers.
- Web Usage Surpasses “Big TV” (8:56): Media Life Magazine recently published the findings of an eMarketer study that shows that people now spend more time with their digital devices than television — up 38 percent from two years ago. From a content distribution standpoint, we recommend having a dedicated strategy for mobile that not only includes smartphones but also all sizes of untethered tablets.
- LinkedIn Making a Bigger Play Toward Brand Content (20:20): A Digiday article noted this week that LinkedIn is partnering with major media partners to distribute their content on its website, with a goal of enabling more companies to build brand publishing experiences that will live on and off LinkedIn. Robert and I explain why we believe the next logical step would be for LinkedIn to buy a content distribution network like OutBrain or Taboola to help drive more traffic to the branded content it will be hosting.
- Facebook Launches a Wire Service (27:27): According to Mashable, Facebook has launched a new wire service, taking advantage of its partnership with Storyful, a news agency that aggregates news content shared on social networks. While I think this is the first step toward positioning the popular social media network as a preferred source for news, Robert sees it as addressing a non-issue.
- Sixty-two percent of People Don’t Remember the Native Advertising They’ve Seen (33:50): Digiday also reports on a new study from HubShout, which says that two-thirds of consumers have read a native ad, but almost an equal number didn’t remember what it was about or who the advertiser was afterwards. I point out that nearly 13 percent of survey participants did remember the sponsor and/or what the sponsored promotion was about — which is actually very good compared to banner advertising. Yet Robert believes we all need to look at native advertising through a content lens, rather than a campaign-centric one.
2. Big Ideas From Our Sponsor (42:12)
- This week’s PNR is sponsored by Oracle Marketing Cloud (formerly Eloqua), which has released an excellent guide called Marketing Automation Simplified. It’s the small guide to big ideas to improve your marketing automation expertise. More marketers are implementing marketing automation to maximize the value of their data, improve engagements, and effectively measure effectiveness. While automation technology also helps companies become more data-driven to improve accountability, it can be challenging to understand how to make the most of its functionality. Marketing Automation Simplified offers an introduction on 5 Tenets of Modern Marketing, and gives a breakdown on handy tips to help marketers automate and optimize data and targeting, email marketing, lead nurturing and scoring, content marketing, and sales/marketing alignment. You can download it here.
3. Rants and Raves (44:08)
- Joe’s Rave: My rave for this week is a new blog called Sorry For Marketing, founded by Jay Acunzo, former Senior Content Director at HubSpot. He just wrote his first blog post there, which acts as his manifesto for content marketing. His approach is refreshing, and I can’t wait to read more of his deep thoughts on our industry.
- Robert’s Rant: Talk about an epic social content failure: The New York Police Department recently launched a social media campaign with the hashtag #mynypd, asking the public to post photos of their favorite moments with the local police. Not surprisingly, the effort became a forum for less-than-flattering commentary on the NYPD. Even advertising and PR agencies jumped on the bandwagon, newsjacking the hashtag for their own purposes.
4. Listener Question (51:20)
- Lee Pettijohn writes:
“My question revolves around small businesses looking to ‘advertise’ or even publish an article about what’s happening at their business. The site I created, Experience Hermann, is conducive to finding people searching the internet and having one source for lots of different activities in the area. While I agree with your concept of content marketing, is there room for a small business that doesn’t have the budget or time to create their own content marketing channel for their customers to utilize a site like Experience Hermann to ‘advertise’ themselves in the form of articles and native pieces?”
5. This Old Marketing Example of the Week (56:18)
- Indium Corporation: Indium is a supplier of alloys, solders, powders, and other materials used in electronic assembly. Rick Short, the company’s Marketing Communications Director, developed a set of 17 blogs in 2005. Written by the company’s engineers and targeted to their industry peers who are Indium customers, the blog’s content is focused on providing product instruction, and is now available in six languages. Short says this content marketing strategy has resulted in a 600 percent increase in sales leads in a very niche-oriented B2B market.
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