By Joe Pulizzi published November 15, 2014 Est Read Time: 5 min

This Week in Content Marketing: Failed 2014 Content Marketing Predictions

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

In this special first anniversary episode of #ThisOldMarketing, Robert and I look back at the content marketing predictions we made for 2014 at this time last year. We share our opinions on a politician using native advertising for “endorsements” and urge caution toward Facebook, which is trying to convince brands to host their content on its website. We also share our concerns about a biased article that asks, “Is content marketing worth it?” Rants and raves include the “Alex from Target” meme and the Wall Street Journal’s questionable approach to article comments. We wrap up the show with a #This Old Marketing example: Our very own This Old Marketing podcast.

This week’s show

(Recorded live on November 10, 2014; Length: 1:01:17)

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1. Content Marketing in the News

  • Predictions from 2013 (4:05): In episode six of PNR, Robert and I made some predictions for content marketing in 2014. A year later, we take a look at how accurate our prognostications were. Robert’s record was one for four; my record was zero for three. We agreed that in most cases we weren’t wrong in what would eventually happen, it was just a matter of how quickly. What will happen in 2015 in the world of content marketing? Here’s one perspective from Forbes.
  • Native Advertising in San Francisco Politics (15:17): The San Francisco Weekly reports that The Bold Italic, a local e-zine and events hub, recently ran an opinion piece that sounded like an endorsement for a candidate running for the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Board. Actually, it was a sponsored post, paid for by the candidate. Robert and I agreed that publishers must make a conscious choice on how far they’re willing to be pushed by sponsors without compromising journalistic integrity.
  • Facebook Offers Publishers a Faustian Bargain (23:07): Facebook is reportedly pushing publishers, many of whom are already dependent on Facebook for a significant portion of their traffic, to start publishing stories within Facebook’s mobile app, according to DigiDay. Articles would live on Facebook for reduced page load times and other supposed benefits. But Robert and I agree that content marketers should proceed with caution, and we explain why.
  • Content in Crisis: Content Marketing vs. Sales Enablement (30:54): A new article on VentureBeat poses the big question: Is content marketing worth the investment? Unfortunately, the article is very slanted toward the answer “no” because it repeatedly quotes the head of a sales automation firm who doesn’t seem to understand content marketing. Balancing out his negative opinions are some thoughtful remarks by Joe Chernov, HubSpot’s VP of Content, which Robert and I love.

2. Sponsor (37:18)

  • This Old Marketing is sponsored by Emma – email marketing for the modern brand, featuring mobile-responsive templates, social integration tools, and concierge services. Emma is promoting a new report entitled Automation Demystified: A Modern Marketer’s Guide to Email Automation. You’ll learn how to create undeniable value for subscribers, welcome new subscribers without creating new content, and boost conversions with timely sends based on life cycle milestones. You can register for it at


3. Rants and Raves (39:05)

  • Robert’s Rant: Robert takes issue with the outrage that erupted in recent weeks behind “The Alex from Target” meme, where the retailer was chastised by consumers for promoting a handsome 16-year-old employee’s picture that went viral on its own. It was not part of a campaign by Target or one of its agencies. This was a positive story that grew organically, as things on the internet often do. What’s so forbidden about acknowledging it and amplifying it, Robert asks? As content marketers, isn’t that what we’re supposed to do?
  • Joe’s Rant: Two shows ago, I ranted about a Wall Street Journal article that equated content marketing with native advertising. I subsequently left a comment on the article, hoping for a response. Getting none after seven days, I wrote a post entitled Hey WSJ – Content Marketing is NOT Native Advertising. It got a lot of attention, including an email exchange with the WSJ article’s author. My conversation with her contains an important lesson for all content marketers about what not to do with social media monitoring.

4. This Old Marketing Example of the Week (50:10)

  • This Old Marketing: For our first anniversary show, we decided to make this podcast the example of the week. Robert and I put a lot of thought into planning it, to ensure that it would be a worthwhile investment of our time and that it would integrate with CMI’s business objectives. A year later, it has become very successful on several levels: 11% of this year’s Content Marketing World attendees and half of CMW Sydney attendees were podcast listeners. Also, the credibility it has generated for both of us has resulted in many new clients, speaking engagements, and workshop requests. Marketers feel they know us and the ways in which we think from the podcast. That makes it an easy decision to hire us to help them with their content marketing needs.

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5. Winner of the iTunes Drawing

  • Last week, we ran a contest to encourage listeners to post reviews of this podcast to iTunes. We randomly picked one of you who did so and have awarded a $100 iTunes gift card to NasonMedia. Please contact us at [email protected] and we’ll send you your prize. Listen to the podcast to hear what Nason had to say about This Old Marketing. A big thank you to everyone who posted a review! For a full list of the PNR archives, go to the main This Old Marketing page.

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Author: Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi is the bestselling author of seven content marketing books including his latest, Content Inc. He has founded four companies, including the Content Marketing Institute (CMI), and his newest venture, The Tilt. His podcast series, This Old Marketing with Robert Rose, has generated millions of downloads from over 150 countries. He is also the author of The Random Newsletter, delivered to thousands every two weeks. His Foundation, The Orange Effect, delivers speech therapy and technology services to children in 35 states. Follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi.

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