Author: Robert Rose

Robert is the founder and chief strategy officer of The Content Advisory, the education and consulting group for The Content Marketing Institute. Robert has worked with more than 500 companies, including 15 of the Fortune 100. He’s provided content marketing and strategy advice for global brands such as Capital One, NASA, Dell, McCormick Spices, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, and The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Robert’s third book – Killing Marketing, with co-author Joe Pulizzi has been called the “book that rewrites the rules of marketing.” His second book – Experiences: The Seventh Era of Marketing is a top seller and has been called a “treatise, and a call to arms for marketers to lead business innovation in the 21st century.” Robert’s first book, Managing Content Marketing, spent two weeks as a top 10 marketing book on Amazon.com and is generally considered to be the “owners manual” of the content marketing process. You can follow him on Twitter @Robert_Rose.

By robert-rose published June 4, 2013

Salesforce.com Acquires ExactTarget: How It Could Impact Content Marketing

content-marketing-salesforce-exacttargetI met (if you can call it that) Marc Benioff in 2003. It was at one of the first DreamForce conferences, and the company I was working for was one of the exhibitors. As he breezed by me with his (even then) sizable entourage, I told him that I thought DreamForce was one of the smartest content marketing moves he could make. He just kind of looked at me (in the way that only Benioff can), quizzically muttered, “thank you,” and then saw General Colin Powell (who was the keynote that year) and moved on.  Continue Reading

By robert-rose published May 16, 2013

Be Remarkable or Fail: Changes Content Creators Must Make

remarkable content stands out in crowdOver the last few weeks, Joe Pulizzi and I have posted a few of our ideas on the importance of planning in a successful approach to content marketing. Joe touched on the importance of strategy in his 4 Truths About Content Marketing Agencies piece, and I followed this with my thoughts on content marketing’s current status in the “Valley of Disillusionment,” and how it is poised to make true progress, moving forward.

As I dig in, I’ve been working on a maturity model for an optimal content marketing approach. While I plan to share those ideas in a future post, one theme I keep coming back to is that, independent of the approach, a successful content marketing strategy requires placing a priority on remarkable content over everything else.Continue Reading

By robert-rose published April 28, 2013

Organizing Your Department for Content Marketing: Strategic Requirements

organizing for contentThis week, the Altimeter Group published Organizing for Content: Models to Incorporate Content Strategy and Content Marketing in the Enterprise. The research, which is based on interviews with 78 practitioners, content services providers, and domain experts, is well worth a read. (Disclosure: I was among the interview participants.) The author, Rebecca Lieb, discusses how brands are challenged with organizing themselves around content marketing, and offers some models and suggestions to help.Continue Reading

By robert-rose published April 17, 2013

How to Survive the Disillusionment of Content Marketing

train tracks-content marketingA few days ago, Joe Pulizzi wrote a post, 4 Truths About Content Marketing Agencies. There, he outlined some of the agency trends and best practices that we at CMI have observed as the ideas around content marketing become more widespread — and as more companies join the “gold rush” of helping brands produce this content.

As with most new approaches (think social media, or cloud services, or “big data”), we have seen clearly thought-out practices being evangelized right alongside the short-sighted strategies of trend-obsessed hangers-on. Continue Reading

By robert-rose published March 1, 2013

Brand Storytelling: 10 Steps to Start Your Content Marketing Hero’s Journey

brand storytelling journeyAs a content marketer, you have probably heard the call for us all to become brand storytellers. While this sounds great in theory, the tricky part for many companies is determining how to develop these stories in the first place. 

There are no hard-and-fast rules for developing your brand’s stories, but you can go back and look at classic storytelling and structure as a helpful map to guide you. For example, the classic “hero’s journey” from Joseph Campbell’s, The Hero with a Thousand Facesoutlines what he calls the “monomyth” — which is a pattern that many believe can be found in almost every narrative around the world. Continue Reading

By robert-rose published December 24, 2012

To Create Engaging Content Marketing You Must Hug the Chaos

[Editor’s note: Happy Holidays! This week, the editorial team at Content Marketing Institute wanted to share some of the best content marketing blog posts we’ve seen from our CMI Consultants. Today’s post originally appeared on Robert Rose’s The Mythic Marketer blog on June 19, 2012.]

create engaging content marketing

My grandfather used to say something that’s been on my mind a lot recently. Whenever I got frustrated about anything — school, a job, life, more generally — he would ask me “What have you created lately?” Then, he’d chide me: “Go create a new experience for someone.” He wrote this to me once in a card that explained this idea, which was: When you create a new experience for someone, you get to experience it — and in turn, it creates new opportunity for you. Continue Reading

By robert-rose published November 4, 2012

Brand Storytelling Lessons from the Content 2020 Project

If you haven’t already seen the overview of Coca Cola’s Content 2020 Project on YouTube, stop reading this right now, and go spend the 18 minutes. If you’re at all interested in how content is going to reshape the strategic marketing process, this is quite simply, a manifesto.Continue Reading

By robert-rose published April 16, 2012

How Asking “Why” Helps Us Get to Our Larger Story

asking why, Content Marketing InstituteIf you’re a parent, you’ve no doubt at some point had to master the never-ending onslaught of a “why?” session. Comedian Louis CK has a wonderful bit on this, where he talks about how his daughter’s asking “why” led him to mind-altering insanity as a question about going outside while it’s raining led deeper and deeper into the meaning of life.

But of course we were kids ourselves once. Remember? We had all the time in the world — and nothing was more important than understanding the wide world around us. Dr. Dawn Taylor, a psychologist at Penn State who specializes in child development said something that resonates with me: “Asking ‘why’ is one of the most important strategies children have for connecting with their caregivers and learning about the world around them.

It’s also one of the most important strategies for content marketing. Let me explain… why.Continue Reading

By robert-rose published January 3, 2012

Content Marketing Storytelling: Secrets from the Big Screen

This past September, I was honored to speak at Content Marketing World. My talk was called “Storytelling Secrets From Hollywood.” Since that time, I’ve had a few people ask me for the slides. Inspired by these requests, I’ve been having some fun learning about video-editing programs. So here, I thought I’d go one step further and develop a little video for CMI readers.

The video embedded below is the basis of my presentation at Content Marketing World 2011.  I’ve since added some more visual elements to the storytelling — including clips from some of the movies I reference. (Hopefully, I’ve made them a little more fun to watch). Of course, if you’re interested in viewing the on-demand version of my talk, it’s available here.

Continue Reading

By robert-rose published October 10, 2011

6 Ways To Move Beyond Best Practices

In Best Practices, Mediocre Results , Robert Rose claims marketers who focus on measuring up to others are less willing to take risks and less likely to stand out.  Here, he offers tips about how to move beyond best practices—and become more than just average.

6 Ways To Move Beyond Best Practices

1. Turn worst to best

As an exercise, take your worst performing tactic (maybe it’s print) and ask yourself, “If tomorrow this was the only way I could market, how would I do it differently?”

2. Turn best to different

Pretend you learn the conversion rate on your best content marketing tactic ranks dead last among your peers who use the same tactic. What would you do differently?

3. Burst your bubble

What would you do if demand for your product or service   fizzled out (e.g., demand for camera film)? How would your story change to meet the challenge?

4. Join a new clique

What if you applied best practices from another industry to your business? Learn what’s going on in an industry completely different than your own. What ideas can you borrow?

5. Ask the choir for a song suggestion

Have you mined company employees outside of marketing for wonderful, crazy and out-of-the-box ideas? Find the hidden innovators in your organization and find ways to get them involved.

6. Differentiation, not “incrementation”

Remember that differentiation means being “different” than your competition. Instead of asking how to tell a better story than your competition, think about how you can tell a different one.

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