Skip to content

Which Content Marketers Will Do Well in the Post-Shutdown World? [The Weekly Wrap]

Listen to the Weekly Wrap here or subscribe on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher. If you enjoy the show, please take a moment to rate it or post a review.

And that’s a wrap of the week ending March 27, 2020

This week I’m wondering when we can just “say when.” I explore how a Kumbaya moment between consumer and B2B magazines may offer a new model for content monetization for brand publishers. Brainrider’s Jon Kane talks with me about content marketing in these challenging (and rapidly changing) days. And I point out an article that will help you decide when (and how) the news should disrupt your content calendar.

Our theme this week is courtesy of the Foo Fighters: You gotta promise not to stop when I say when. Let’s wrap it up.

One deep thought: Change can’t come soon enough (3:13)

When is this going to be over? When will things get better? When can we start marketing again? Go outside? Hug someone? When will it be safe again?

Interestingly, many of us fear that the real question isn’t “when will it,” but “will it ever?” Will it ever be over? Will things ever get better? Will we ever market again, tell stories, go outside, hug someone? Will it ever be safe again?

The answer is – and always is – yes.

How do I know? Because of us, it already is. We are the answer. We always have been.

I explain, with an assist from the writer, philosopher, and storyteller Joseph Campbell, who once said: “When we talk about settling the world’s problems, we’re barking up the wrong tree. The world isn’t perfect. It’s a mess. It has always been a mess. We are not going to change it. Our job is to straighten out our own lives.”

“We are not going to change (the world). Our job is to straighten out our own lives,” writer Joseph Campbell via @Robert_Rose. #WeeklyWrap Share on X

A fresh take on B2B and B2C collaboration (10:05)

A news story from FOLIO: caught my eye this week (and offered a welcome diversion from the endless stream of COVID-19 stories). The article, ‘House Beautiful’ Contracts ‘Business of Home’ for Guest Column, opens up by exploring the origin story of Business of Home:

Its founder and president, Julia Noran Johnston, who at the time had been working at Hearst Magazines … noted that advertisers in shelter magazines increasingly wanted to reach design professionals, a valuable audience subset with considerable spending power, but one not necessarily core to large consumer glossies or existing trade publications serving architects or builders.

As the article recounts, Johnston left Hearst to start Business of Home and “consumer-facing books like Luxe Interiors + Design, Elle Décor, Cottages & Gardens and Veranda became clients, contracting BOH to provide event coverage or produce videos whenever their clients expressed the desire to reach a trade audience.”

Before long, Conde Nast’s Architectural Digest launched a competitive offering: AD Pro, a members-only vertical targeting professional interior designers and architects.

But BOH’s founder and House Beautiful’s editorial director hit on an idea that helped both publications: branded guest columns by BOH writers appearing in House Beautiful’s print and online editions. And the consumer magazine would pay BOH to produce them.

The columns help House Beautiful serve a niche segment of its audience while Business of Home gets to appear in (and gets paid to create content for) House Beautiful.

Now they’ve collaborated on a whole section focused not just on designers but also on retailers and manufacturers.

I talk about what content marketers looking to expand coverage and reach new audiences can learn from this example. And that includes new ways to monetize your content.

.@HouseBeautiful now pays firm for branded guest columns. Is it a new #content monetization model? @Robert_Rose via @cmicontent #WeeklyWrap Share on X

This week’s person making a difference in content: Jon Kane (16:40)

My guest this week is Jon Kane, executive director of client services at Brainrider, a B2B digital and creative marketing agency. Jon leads a team of marketers dedicated to creating strong client relationships while helping to build their marketing and sales pipeline. Jon’s experience in B2B marketing, web content, and technology lets him provide key strategic input and guidance to clients of all sizes across all industries.

A former stand-up (is one ever a former stand-up?) comedian, music journalist, and computer science graduate, Jon combines his creative and strategic thinking with his firsthand experience working with B2B clients to inform his B2B marketing perspective.

Jon and I talked about what he’s seeing in content when it comes to generalizing, specializing, and when we should get back to the business of business again.

Here’s a snippet from one of Jon’s insights:

The content marketers that are going to do well are ones that aren’t tied to a specific type of work. They’re actually able to pivot and rely on different skills … If you are the kind of person who focuses on events and you aren’t able to pivot to writing content for webinars or podcasts or some other type of lead-generation activity or campaign, you’re going to struggle. Same with someone who can only write and can’t pivot to work with marketing automation or be able to code. This is the time where that generalist mindset of having a broad base of skill set to lean upon is going to be most valuable.

#Content marketers who will do well in a post-corona world aren’t tied to a specific type of work, says @jonkane via @cmicontent. #WeeklyWrap Share on X

Listen to our conversation, then learn more about Jon:


Sharpen your skills without leaving your home. Enroll in Content Marketing University, CMI’s online training program, one of the most comprehensive content marketing education and training curriculums in the world. FRIEND200 saves $200.

One content marketing idea you can use (34:25)

The one post on CMI’s site that I’d love for you to take another look at is one by CMI’s own Ann Gynn, and it’s about something I think is on everybody’s mind: Should the News Disrupt Your Content Calendar? Here’s How to Decide.

It’s a great post that gives you an assessment tool to help you figure out if a current event should disrupt your existing content schedule. And here’s a spoiler: The global pandemic we’re living through right now scores an 11 out of 10. So, yeah, it should probably warrant a look at your publishing schedule.

When headlines fill with bad news, you need to reevaluate your #content calendar. @AnnGynn offers a process to help you decide how to adjust. Robert_Rose via @CMIContent #WeeklyWrap Share on X.
But the scale also works well as you start to take on other news. I hope you’ll check it out.

The wrap-up

Join us next week when I’ll raise one thought that will help you deal. I’ll share one news item that will have you all in. Finally, I’ll call with one content marketing tip to give you a hand that’s all that and a bag of chips. And it’ll all be delivered in a little less time than it takes for another person to launch an online class.

If you have ideas for what you’d like to hear more of on our weekly play on words, let us know in the comments. And if you love the show, we’d sure love for you to review it or share it. Hashtag us up on Twitter: #WeeklyWrap.

To listen to past Weekly Wrap shows, go to the main Weekly Wrap page.

How to subscribe

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute