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42 Content Marketing Commandments

42 CommandmentsAt the end of 2009, I published 30 content marketing truths that I have taped above my desk. I then revised the list and republished it last Thanksgiving, as this list is something that I am grateful for because it is a constant reminder for me to stay focused.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving in the U.S., and to give my own thanks for all that I have learned this year, I’ve added some new content marketing commandments and truisms that I’d like to share with you. 

  1. The content is more important than the offer.
  2. A customer relationship doesn’t end with the payment.
  3. Printed marketing doesn’t stop with the full-page advertisement.
  4. “Being the content” is more important than “surrounding the content.”
  5. Interruption isn’t valued, but engagement is.
  6. A blog can be, and should be, a core part of communicating with and marketing to your customers.
  7. Internal marketing always takes precedence over external marketing.
  8. A brand is a relationship, not a tag line.
  9. Focusing on what the customer wants is more important than what you have to sell.
  10. The competition can copy everything you have, except your brand. Communications is the differentiator.
  11. A news release isn’t meant to be picked up by the press, but rather to help customers find your great content on the web.
  12. Communicating directly with customers is the best choice.
  13. Marketers can and should be publishers.
  14. Today’s traditional publishers are scared of marketers.
  15. Without content, community is improbable, if not impossible.
  16. The marketing brochure should be stricken from all strategic marketing plans.
  17. Content without design doesn’t look appetizing (or deliver on marketing goals).
  18. Lead generation is only one small part of the marketing picture.
  19. Hiring an editor is not a want, but a must, for all organizations.
  20. No matter the medium or the provider, someone is always selling something.
  21. The long tail of search engine optimization is driven by consistent content on your corporate blog or website.
  22. 90 percent of all corporate websites talk about how great the company or product is and forget about the customer.
  23. 90 percent of all corporate websites are terrible.
  24. In the next few years, the majority of content consumers engage in will be corporate media (if it is not already).
  25. Buyers are in control, the traditional sales process has changed, and relevant content lets organizations into the buying process.
  26. Long-form branded content can be created anywhere your customers work, live, or play.
  27. The Chief Content Officer is the CMO of the future.
  28. Customers want to be inspired. Be the inspiration!
  29. There is no one right way to do content marketing. Be willing to experiment.
  30. In-person events continue to be one of the best ways to connect with your audience.
  31. Never overlook the power of simplicity.
  32. Content marketing success in your organization means having the right process.
  33. Marketers need to start understanding the difference between content marketing and inbound marketing.
  34. The content marketing community is made up of some of the most helpful and inspiring people. Reach out and partner!
  35. There are no shortcuts to great content marketing; it takes a lot of elbow grease.
  36. When in doubt, always add an image to your content.
  37. Don’t rely too much on Google to bring traffic to your site.
  38. Content curation is important, but it is not a strategy. To be the trusted expert in your industry, you must create your own content.
  39. Don’t wait for perfection.  Great content doesn’t have to be perfect.  It will never be perfect.
  40. Outsource effectively or be effectively outsourced.
  41. If you don’t have scaling problems with your content, you aren’t moving fast enough.
  42. Before you create your content masterpiece, figure out how you are going to market it first.

What is your favorite? Do you have any other content marketing truths? Share them in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.