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This Week in Content Marketing: A Net Neutrality Win | Stop Talking So Much About Yourself


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

In this week’s episode, Robert and I announce that John Cleese is keynoting at Content Marketing World 2015. After much celebration, we reveal what the FCC’s decision on Net Neutrality means and discuss research that shows B2B marketers are still talking about themselves too much. We also highlight five publishers who plan to use Snapchat’s Discover channel to launch new shows and the IAB’s new native advertising guidelines. Rants and raves include Coca-Cola, Target, and Gawker. We wrap up the show with a #ThisOldMarketing example from KISS.

This week’s show

(Recorded live on February 9, 2015; Length: 58:02)

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1. Content Marketing in the News

  • John Cleese to Headline 2015 Content Marketing World Conference (3:27): John Cleese, the British comedic actor, writer, producer, and director will be one of the keynote speakers at the fifth annual Content Marketing World conference September 8-11 in Cleveland. Robert and I are both looking forward to his insights into the creative process, from which content marketers can learn a great deal.
  • Content Marketing Company Taboola Raises $117 Million (5:37): Israeli-owned content marketing company, Taboola, has raised $117 million, to fuel its growth as a platform for content recommendations and native advertising. Robert and I have been predicting that 2015 will be a huge year for investment in the content marketing technology space, and this deal is just the first example of 2015.
  • FCC Says This is How We Will Ensure Net Neutrality (6:52): Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Tom Wheeler has penned a column for that explains his agency’s strong commitment to Net Neutrality. If approved, these regulations will ban paid prioritization of internet traffic and blocking of services. Robert cautions this decision by the FCC isn’t a done deal, and he explains why.
  • Almost 1 In 3 B2B Marketers Say Their Content Is Too Company-Focused, Not Customer-Centric (11:22): Two surveys show that B2B marketers believe their content is still too company-focused and not driven enough by customer needs, MarketingCharts reports. One of the surveys cited says only 32% of marketers focus their content on their customers. Robert and I believe that the number is way too low, and we share our view of what it actually is, based on our consulting work. This low number is probably the result of surveying both marketers and salespeople – who tend to be very focused on products.
  • How 5 Major Publishers Plan to Use Snapchat’s New Channels (14:45): A number of major publishers have already jumped on board Shapchat’s new Discover channel and will use it to launch shows specifically designed to highlight their best content. Marketers can sponsor stories on Discover, giving them excellent visibility with young people who are avid users of Snapchat. What’s fascinating to Robert and me is how this is similar to “appointment television;” viewers must tune in at specific days and times to watch shows or they will disappear forever.
  • IAB Publishes Native Ad Guidelines – But Only For the U.K. (23:11): The U.K. arm of the Internet Advertising Bureau has published its first guidelines for native advertising, stating it needs clear branding to show it is not pure editorial, says Marketing Magazine and PerformanceIN. I like the direction IAB is taking because it emphasizes self-policing over regulation of native advertising. Robert believes the U.K. rollout may be a test before IAB expands these guidelines to North America.
  • LinkedIn Beats Twitter for Content Marketing (28:40): LinkedIn has leap-frogged Twitter as the No. 1 social network for content marketing, reveals a new study by CMI and the Direct Marketing Association UK. It found that 96% of respondents use LinkedIn for content marketing, compared to Twitter with 89%. Robert and I agree that the success of LinkedIn’s open publishing platform has made it a preferred content platform for brands. Robert shares his experience of publishing posts on LinkedIn, which has been very positive.

2. Sponsor (34:02)

  • This Old Marketing is sponsored by Marketo, which sells marketing automation software solutions. To help you accomplish your content marketing goals, Marketo is offering a workbook called the Content Marketing Tactical Plan. Download it, fill it in to develop your strategies, and start creating a content machine that truly maps to your goals. It includes staffing guidelines, content planning charts, editorial calendar templates, promotion objectives and tactics, and key content metrics. You can learn more at


3. Rants and Raves (37:33)

  • Joe’s Rave: Randall Rothenberg, president and CEO of the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), predicts that marketing technology will decline in importance as a source of audience growth and commercial opportunity. The only sustainable competitive advantage, he says, will be superior storytelling and content. Robert and I agree this is an excellent article, but we disagree with Rothenberg’s opinion about SEO becoming marginalized.
  • Robert’s Rant: Coca-Cola recently ran an automated Twitter campaign that got hijacked by Gawker. Coke asked its Twitter followers to tweet happy thoughts. It used a bot to convert them into ASCII art of dogs, sunshine, balloons, and other happy things. Gawker tweeted lines from Hitler’s Mein Kampf with the campaign’s tagline, which got processed and shared in its feed. Gawker then feigned indignation over Coke’s gaffe. Robert hates this mean-spirited attack on the well-respected soft drink brand.
  • Robert’s Rave: Target pooled eight Grammy ad spots to insert a 4-minute surprise concert by Imagine Dragons into the awards show. Robert loved how it was thematically integrated into the show and Target’s innovative pre- and post-event promotion of it. This included a behind-the-scenes look at how this live performance was produced. Brilliant!

4. This Old Marketing Example of the Week (48:48)

  • KISS: The KISS Army, the fan club of rock supergroup KISS, has been producing an excellent newsletter for nearly 40 years. When you join the KISS Army, you get inside information on albums, tours, and other news about the group. For over four decades, KISS has used its fan club to build a huge mailing list of devoted fans and sell millions of dollars in albums, tickets, and merchandise. Today, KISS has expanded its communication repertoire to include e-newsletters, which are also well-designed and informative. The KISS Army is so successful that other musical groups and record labels look to it as a model for how to create a vibrant fan club. If you want to become a member of the KISS Army, you can sign up here.
Image source: KISS Army

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

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