Content marketing touches so many topics and aspects that it’s hard to keep up, let alone write or say everything that can be written or said about it. So here is a selection of words from the wise: content marketing experts, practitioners and people that are not in content marketing at all.
As we write so much ourselves (and interview and organize, we combined a mix of wisdom (and quotes) from our own websites and other destinations and sources. Enjoy and get inspired by our selection of content marketing wisdom we stumble upon or gather through our events, interviews and more. PS: this list is regularly updated.
Content marketing expert thoughts
On content and confidence
Confidence is the single magic ingredient of great content and the only common ingredient to all content. And that means novels, movies, poetry, comedy routines and marketing content. The only thing that unites the best is confidence, a storyteller who knows they’re good at what they’re doing. They know they’re going to grab you by the shirt, pull you through their story and not going to let go until they’re done with you.
- Doug Kessler (Velocity Partners).
- Source: YouTube interview “Doug Kessler: standing out with content marketing and home runs“.
On storytelling and emotional connections
Storytelling in the context of content marketing is really about finding the common ground between how it is that the brand wants to be known and the things that the customers care about. What stories can we tell that bring those two concepts together? You can use stories as a brand, with content marketing, as a way to communicate very complex or difficult to understand ideas. But you can also use stories to connect with people, to inform them and connect with them on an emotional level.
- Lee Odden (TopRank Online Marketing).
- Source: YouTube interview “Lee Odden: interview at the Content Marketing Conference Europe“.
On the need to better understand how new channels work together (in B2B)
The buying process has gotten messy for B2B marketers. This easy access to information means that engagement one second can turn into disinterest in the next. Every new channel puts a hole in your funnel. (Although I’ve never liked the funnel construct, it’s appropriate for making the point.) Marketers who don’t integrate new channels into their content marketing strategy will find they have a very leaky funnel. I’m not talking about using them, I’m talking about considering how they all work together.
On getting your content shared
Writing content is the easy part, getting anyone to read it takes skill – today more than ever. A great network is exponentially more valuable than a killer blog post that nobody knows exists. Also, remember two things when it comes to the creation and sharing of content: that you get what you give and nobody wants to be marketed to. Write to serve your audience, build relationships with information, put people first. That’s a winning equation.
- Shelly Kramer (V3IM.com).
- Source: SlideShare eBook “Content Sharing Success Recipes from 6 of the most socially-shared”.
On content marketing as a discipline
Content Marketing is a discipline, not a department, and isn’t owned by one person. Content marketers can be sprinkled throughout teams and departments and you may be actually be a content marketer and simply not know it.
- Kelly Hungerford (Paper.li)
- Source: Great content marketing lessons from Kelly Hungerford.
On content audits and gathering inputs
Each period, you should be learning more about your audience and customers, then adjusting efforts system-wide. Further, getting in the habit of auditing tactical programs and setting growth roadmaps against KPIs is critical. Don’t forget to also audit your user experience across channels. Do you have a user experience roadmap? This includes content and visual components and should be thought about as a constant evolution v. one-time fix.
- Mike Corak (ethology)
- Source: An integrated content marketing approach with Mike Corak (interview).
On the role of content marketing in tomorrow’s business
Content marketing becomes a practice within the business to handle this approach as a separate (but integrated) function. Businesses will become skilled at the creation, management and general use of content in the same way that they are becoming skilled at technology. Content is an integrated practice within the business – not a replacement for the practice of marketing.
- Robert Rose (Content Marketing Institute).
- Source: Robert Rose on content marketing and storytelling (interview).
On buyer-centric content marketing
Unless you know very intimately who gains value from your products, why they think so and how they do so, how the heck do you know what to say to them? Think about the anxiety you experience when going to a party where you don’t know anyone. You wonder what to say, whether or not they’ll care and if you’ll look good (smart, likeable, impressive, etc.). Why don’t we care as much about what our buyers and customers think of their experiences with our company and our brand?
- Ardath Albee (Marketing Interactions)
- Source: Ardath Albee on buyer-centric content marketing and personas (interview).
On the need of a rationale for content marketing
I specifically wrote Youtility for two reasons. First, as a reaction to the culture of “be amazing” which, as mentioned above, is a seductive, yet terrible, framework. Second, to give companies a strategic scaffolding for content marketing. Many/most companies are on the content bandwagon now, but they often lack a rationale for creating content, and an understanding of how it fits into the larger marketing scheme.
- Jay Baer (Convince & Convert)
- Source: Youtility: Jay Baer on usefulness and true customer value (interview).
On bringing the customer in
The single most important thing is to observe real customers try and complete real tasks on your website. Watch people try and use your website. That is so powerful. Web marketers are like blind men trying to conduct an orchestra in New York while sitting in a taxi in Amsterdam. We have to bring the customer in, make the customer present.
- Gerry McGovern (Gerrymcgovern.com).
- Source: Gerry McGovern: content is not the strategy, the task is (interview).
On answering questions no one asks – and the curse
Too much knowledge about your company and what you offer leads you to answer questions nobody is asking. When you’re inside the bottle, it’s hard to read the label. But that’s also when you risk pushing your own interests at the expense of your customers’ interests. This will often lead you to answer questions in your content marketing and advertising that no one is actually asking.
- Bryan Eisenberg (Bryaneisenberg.com).
- Source: 90% of Content Marketers Suffer From ‘The Curse’ & How to Remedy It (blog post).
On the hero of the story
Make your customer the hero of your story. One of the challenges in making your customer the hero – especially for bigger brands — is, of course, uncovering those “stories” or submissions on social networking sites – and then managing the process (securing permissions, for example) and measuring success.
- Ann Handley (Annhandley.com).
- Source: Make Your Customer the Hero of Your Story: ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ Video (blog post).
More wisdom – and quotes – about content marketing and media we like
- “If your content marketing is for everybody, it’s for nobody“. Joe Pulizzi (Content Marketing Institute). Source.
- “It can take decades to establish a media brand. If a company decides it wants to provide a media service, it needs to know that it is a lifetime commitment”. Tom Foremski (Silicon Valley Watcher). Source.
- “If your story does not take people on a journey where there is a transformation, a beginning, middle, and end, then it’s not a story“. Danyl Bosomworth (Smart Insights). Source.
- “Organizing measurement closer to the activities that best represent buyer and brand interactions through content will help us better measure content performance“. (Lee Odden, TopRank Online Marketing). Source.
- “I think we might get to the point where we don’t think of social marketing and content marketing as separate entities, we just think of them as marketing”. Jay Baer (Convince & Convert). Source.
- “By definition the Content Marketing that we do for (prospective) clients has to add value for them. If it’s not adding value then we call it Nontent instead of Content”. AJ Huisman (Kennedy Van der Laan). Source.