By Joe Pulizzi published September 1, 2014

Confession: A Big Mistake We Were Making With Content Marketing

face-adjusting dark goggles-jarEvery now and again, we realize we aren’t following our own advice (gulp).

While we have been big proponents of offering unique content in each of our channels — and have a channel strategy for Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and others — we were overlooking our most critical channel: email.

As I have talked about before, getting new subscribers is key to our business strategy, and it’s important to us that we are building on “owned land.” And while our weekly email newsletter was a great summary of our blog posts, it didn’t offer anything that people couldn’t get anywhere else.

So, earlier this year, we considered what to provide that would be both unique and timely. We decided to include a weekly segment from me that looks at something going on in the content marketing industry that week, or shares a key observation I’ve had. If you want to get this content, the only way is to subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

The results have been really positive. We’ve received tweets, Facebook posts, and direct emails from subscribers, telling us how much they look forward to that little nugget each week.

As far as staffing support goes for our email strategy, we realized we needed to invest in dedicated resources to make it happen successfully. So we finally bit the bullet and brought on an audience development manager.

After a few months of doing these newsletters, we looked back at the excerpts and noticed a theme had emerged: These writings often cover what the future of content marketing industry may look like and, more importantly, what you need to consider if you’re in this field. We compiled some of these excerpts into the eBook below.

Regardless of whether or not you are one of our subscribers, my challenge to you this is: Ask yourself what your most important channels are — and what you are offering there that isn’t available anywhere else. If it’s not new, or different than the content you create for your other channels of communication, you may have a problem (like we did).

I’d also love to get your thoughts and examples: Which brands do you think are offering unique content in their various channels, including email? Has this been a challenge for you? How did you overcome it?

As we learn more about addressing our own challenges in this area, we will be sure to keep you posted.

For more great ideas, insights, and examples for advancing your content marketing, read Epic Content Marketing, by Joe Pulizzi.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski

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.

Other posts by Joe Pulizzi