By Joe Pulizzi published January 14, 2008

Seth Godin: “Content Marketing is the Only Marketing Left” and 10 New Marketing Lessons

Just sat through an hour teleseminar (Seth’s Meatball Sundae Book Tour) produced by Author Teleseminars and Elizabeth Marshall, that included Seth GodinMichael Port and David Meerman Scott. I’m a regular reader of Seth’s and David’s blogs. If you are at all in the marketing game, get their RSS feeds.

The second last question on the call was from me, where I asked about the role of content marketing and its effect on traditional media. Seth was not familiar with the term content marketing, and fortunately David was there to define it as “the creation of valuable and relevant content yourself (instead of using traditional means).”

Okay, here’s the big answer by Seth…

“[Content Marketing] is all the marketing that’s left.”

Seth went on to say (I’m paraphrasing) that teaching your customers and giving your customers the resources to believe you is new marketing. They become a fan of yours because you teach them something that makes them feel better about the world.

For someone like me that lives and breathes content marketing, needless to say I was pretty excited about his response. If you are not creating your own content that gets people talking about you, what are you doing?

Here are a series of 10 other key points from the audio seminar:

  1. The old way of marketing is where producers talked at customers with consistent interruption. New marketing is about connecting with customers.
  2. Today’s new marketing is a bigger opportunity than any revolution that came along before (Factory, Industrial revolution) because people only need access to ideas, not access to large amounts of capital.
  3. Instead of spending $5 million on advertising, spend $5 million on a great product that people want to talk about.
  4. There is a difference between how many and who. Old marketing was about how many. New marketing is about who. If 12 people are coming to your blog, but they are the right 12 people with large amounts of buying power, that’s what matters.
  5. Permission transferred is permission lost.
  6. Your content: Who is listening? Make something for them. If you make something that solves their problems, they’ll talk about it and tell others.
  7. The gatekeepers have changed. Today’s technology has enabled the destruction of old gatekeepers (have a message to tell and can’t get it out… create a blog then) and the creation of new gatekeepers (those that have 1,000 friends on Facebook).
  8. Figure out why the target needs to pay attention to you? Find information they desperately need (books, blog, research, surveys, etc.) and give it to them. This is the heart of new marketing.
  9. Telling an authentic story means living an authentic life (i.e., Howard Schultz, Starbucks CEO really does love coffee). In the new marketing world, you can’t fake it, so you have no choice but to be real.
  10. All one has to do to understand new marketing is to start a blog. Write stuff that people want to read instead of dictating to them. You learn the lesson quickly!

Content marketing is not easy because you actually have to listen to your customers and know what their challenges are. You cannot solve your marketing woes through buying advertising space. You must make a connection to your customers, and get new customers, by focusing on their true pain points and healing them with information (okay, a bit over the top, but true none the less).

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Learn how to create great content that makes a difference to your customers at Junta42.

Author: Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi is the Founder of Content Marketing Institute, a UBM company, the leading education and training organization for content marketing, which includes the largest in-person content marketing event in the world, Content Marketing World. Joe is the winner of the 2014 John Caldwell Lifetime Achievement Award from the Content Council. Joe’s the author of five books, including his latest, Killing Marketing. His third book, Epic Content Marketing was named one of “Five Must Read Business Books of 2013” by Fortune Magazine. If you ever see Joe in person, he’ll be wearing orange. Follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi.

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