In this episode of This Old Marketing, Robert and I discuss Facebook’s dominance in digital advertising and predict how it will fill the biggest gap in its business model: Content. Next, we roll our eyes at yet another prediction of the death of content marketing, but acknowledge the author’s point that influencer marketing is more important than ever. We then turn our attention to new research from Google that “proves” advertisers should spend a lot more on YouTube ads, and we praise NBC’s decision to incorporate sponsored content into its popular Saturday Night Live TV show. Finally, we’re disappointed with an opinion piece from HBR that laments the glut of digital advertising, but doesn’t offer a solution to the problem. Rants include two beat downs on questionable native advertising practices. This week’s This Old Marketing example of the week is from Schneider Electric’s Energy University.Continue Reading
For years, John Battelle, entrepreneur, technology innovator, and the founder of Wired, drilled into media and marketing professionals the idea of NOT building your content house on rented land.
As recently as two years ago, he clearly stated that “if you’re going to build something, don’t build on land someone else already owns. You want your own land, your own domain, your own sovereignty.” Why? Simply put, once you publish on someone else’s platform, you do not own the subscribers or assets associated with that content. Even if you build followers or fans on that platform, it doesn’t give you the right to communicate with them.Continue Reading
In this week’s episode, Robert and I discuss a contrarian article that claims content marketing is a meaningless buzzword. Its author also counsels marketers to ignore the continuing evolution of marketing, which is flat-out bad advice. A companion article reminds us that we ought to focus on the needs of our customers, not on writing to justify the practice of content marketing to our peers. Next, we ponder the emergence of a new position at large publishers, the e-commerce editor, and explain how it fits into the evolution of media business models. Finally, we interpret BuzzFeed’s disastrous last quarter. Does it point to fundamental problems at the huge online publisher or simply a market correction for an over-valued company? Rants and raves include Dan Lyons’ tell-all tale about BuzzFeed and a must-read HBR article about the end of solution sales. This week’s This Old Marketing example: Ripley’s Believe It or Not.Continue Reading
Over the last six months, we’ve been releasing research reports based on the results of our annual content marketing survey. Each one has focused on a specific vertical. Today we release B2B Enterprise Content Marketing 2016: Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America sponsored by Marketo. This report shows how B2B companies with over 1,000 employees approach content marketing.
If you’ve read any of my blog posts about the prior reports, you know that a pattern emerged from our last round of research: Marketers reported lower overall effectiveness with content marketing compared with a year ago. The story is no different for enterprise marketers: Only 22% of enterprise marketers said their organizations are effective, down from 28% the previous year. Among all sizes of B2B companies we researched, it is the lowest effectiveness reported (30% of B2B marketers said they are effective).Continue Reading
In this episode of This Old Marketing, Robert and I ponder the pros and cons of Facebook’s decision to enable third-party branded content for verified publishers and influencers. Next, we discuss Medium’s new publisher tool set, which includes support for sponsored and members-only content. Is Medium’s new “insta-CMS” still “rented land” that publishers should avoid? We aren’t quite sure. Finally, we interpret Prevention magazine’s decision to drop all print ads and Mashable’s decision to focus on its core business. Rants and raves include agencies abdicating their roles as content strategists, the savvy acquisition of a content marketing superstar in the feminine hygiene market, and Audible’s expansion into short-form audio (just don’t call them podcasts). We wrap up the show with a This Old Marketing example of the week from The General Magazine.Continue Reading
Inbound marketing, as a phrase and a movement, has almost been as popular as content marketing over the past decade.
If both phrases were tradeable stocks, and you purchased $10,000 worth of “inbound marketing” and “content marketing” in June 2008, inbound marketing would be valued at $490,000. If you owned content marketing, you would be a millionaire (per Google Trends March 29, 2016).Continue Reading
In this episode of This Old Marketing, Robert and I analyze a new study that says big companies are starting to get serious about content marketing as the effectiveness of online ads dwindles. While this data is encouraging, we agree that implementing it successfully is where the real challenge lies. Next, we’re not surprised that another new study shows millennials prefer email, which many brands have abandoned in favor of sexier social platforms they thought (erroneously) that Gen Y would prefer. Finally, the explosion of media channels has created a need for a new position: the platform relationship manager. Rants and raves include Lego’s prescient advice to parents of young children, Joe Coleman’s valuable insights into content marketing fundamentals, and the critical importance of customer retention. We wrap up the show with a This Old Marketing example from The Federalist Papers.Continue Reading
In this week’s episode of This Old Marketing, Robert and I discuss Instagram’s move to duplicate Facebook’s algorithm, which makes it abundantly clear that the photo-sharing channel will be “pay to play” for most brands. Still, we believe it will open up some fascinating opportunities for companies willing to experiment. We’re astounded by the growth in Scott Brinker’s 2016 Marketing Technology Landscape, which contains nearly double the number of companies it did in 2015. Finally, we can’t understand why media companies are so myopically focused on supporting journalism with only advertising when there are other ways to monetize. Rants and raves include the passing of legendary tech icon Andy Grove, Mattel’s remarkable reinvention, and Michael Eisner’s Disney. We wrap up the show with a This Old Marketing example of the week from WeWork Creator Magazine.Continue Reading
At the end of Karen McGrane’s keynote speech at Intelligent Content Conference 2016, she talked about getting to 95%. Specifically, she discussed how a responsive web design can get you to 95% of your goals … so don’t be in such a rush to get to adaptive or personalized content (the last 5%). If you reach the 95%, then (and only then) go for the last 5%.
Exactly a week later, I was keynoting an event for Business Marketing Association’s Milwaukee chapter. Before the keynote talk, I had a fantastic conversation with the executive digital team at a large B2B enterprise. The team was really trying to figure out how they were going to start personalizing their content for their customer base. At the same time, the group had no documented content marketing strategy, had multiple internal issues, was experiencing content quality issues, and knew the content they did produce wasn’t getting seen.Continue Reading
In this week’s episode of This Old Marketing, Robert and I ponder the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) decision to slap Lord & Taylor’s wrist for deceptive native ads – while ignoring the publisher’s role in this debacle. Next, we agree that some publishers have undermined their credibility by doing deals with content recommendation engines, which often expose their audiences to sleazy topics on questionable websites. Instagram is the latest social media channel to ditch a real-time feed in favor of an algorithmic one; we discuss what marketers can do to ensure that their content gets noticed. Finally, we’re confused about NPR’s decision to not promote its podcasts on its member radio stations, and why Vice Media is being criticized for creating ads to promote Phillip Morris. Rants and raves include the death of social content and L’Oreal’s launch of an unbranded fashion website. We wrap up the show with this week’s This Old Marketing example from Xavier University basketball.Continue Reading