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This Week in Content Marketing: Compared to Advertising, Content Marketing Still Petite


PNR: This Old Marketing with Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose can be found on both iTunes and Stitcher.

In this week’s episode of This Old Marketing, Robert and I discuss the meteoric growth of Pokémon Go and the intriguing opportunities it may present for marketers. Next, we analyze one blogger’s ranking of hot digital media topics based upon the number of pitches he receives. Where does content marketing rank? The answer may surprise you. Finally, we’re intrigued by the idea of small brands using Medium as a testing ground for their content initiatives. Rants and raves include the principles of irresistible storytelling and the ill-conceived Trump/Pence campaign logo. We wrap up the show with a This Old Marketing example from from Allegion.

This week’s show

(Recorded live on July 17, 2016; Length: 59:41)

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Today’s episode sponsor

  • Ahrefs: Ahrefs is offering a free 14-day free trial plus a special 30% discount of their marketing toolset for PNR podcast listeners only. The discount will only be active until September 1, 2016. Go here for more:


1. Content marketing in the news

  • Pokémon Go inspiring small retailers – has AR gone mainstream? (6:59): Pokémon Go, the mobile game that has millions of people running from location to location, is boosting local businesses in the American heartland, reports AdWeek. As of one week ago, it already had more users than popular dating app Tinder and was set to surge past Twitter in daily active users on Android devices. Robert and I agree that it offers numerous marketing opportunities. Watch for some big brands to do sponsorships and product tie-ins. There are also some amazing opportunities for retailers to do experience-based tie-ins.
  • Why content marketing is bigger than Jon Mandel (19:25): The editor of MediaPost has recently analyzed the number of pitches he received from marketers during the last year to determine the hottest topics. They include programmatic, fraud, native, ad blocking, and transparency. Content marketing is sixth on the list. Robert and I are convinced this ranking points to the marketing industry’s ongoing infatuation with advertising. By comparison, content marketing is still struggling to get attention.
  • Should publishers use Medium? (28:05): With the rise of Medium and its recent push into a more publisher-focused model, many smaller publishers are asking if Medium should be their new home. According to author Thomas Baekdal, Medium is the first platform that masters three key areas that are important to small companies. Robert and I appreciate his detailed, balanced analysis, especially his explanation of Medium’s subscription service. We discuss one clever way that brands can use it as a proof of concept for new content initiatives.

2. Sponsor (37:00)

  • Episerver: As a digital marketer, you face both external and internal challenges — from declining organic reach on social to software issues that sap your team’s productivity. At the same time, you’re tasked with managing content that increases lead count, boosts sales or raises customer loyalty. Four Steps to Simplify Digital Experience, a new guide from Episerver, covers the four fundamental steps of the digital customer experience, and gives hands-on advice on how to work more effectively using Episerver’s CMS and Digital Marketing platform. Each step is accompanied by concrete examples that show you how Episerver helps you simplify the digital experience for your customers. You can download it here:


3. Rants and raves (38:54)

  • Robert’s rave: This week, Robert is enamored with an article from The Wall Street Journal entitled Why Good Storytellers are Happier in Life and in Love. He especially loves its description of the six ways you can become a better storyteller. They are very applicable to us as content marketers — great reminders to us and our teams!
  • Joe’s rant: This week, Donald Trump’s campaign released a logo that the internet thought looked sexually suggestive. Apparently, it was developed and rolled out by a small team with minimal approvals and no testing. For something as important as a brand logo, you really need to organize a content advisory or editorial team to generate and vet ideas. Testing is your friend!
When developing a logo, you should organize a content advisory or editorial team for ideas says @joepulizzi Share on X


4. This Old Marketing example of the week (51:56)

  • iDigHardware: Allegion is a holding company that markets commercial lock systems. It was spun off from Ingersoll-Rand several years ago. Consultant Lori Green works with architects, builders, and other customers who specify locks for commercial buildings. On many occasions, she has heard architects complain that they hate specifying locks and hardware. Eight years ago, she launched an informational website,, to answer questions related to this highly specialized niche. Since 2008, the website has had over 2 million page views, 1 million visits, 500,000 visitors, 2,200 email subscribers, and 1,500 published articles. Green has told Robert that is now a strategically important part of Allegion’s business. It’s a great story of a company that focuses on the needs of a niche audience and delivers exceptional value to its target audience consistently over time. It’s an excellent example of This Old Marketing.


For a full list of PNR archives, go to the main This Old Marketing page.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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