Stop Being a Transactional Content Marketer

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Free white paper! Free webinar! Free eBook!

We’ve all seen the promotional emails, banner ads and Tweets. It’s Free! It’s Free!

The fine print: we will send you weekly emails with more content you didn’t ask for. We will also give your information to our green sales team and tell them to go close the deal now Now NOW as part of our commitment to make it as easy as possible for you to buy. [Read more...]

The Dark Future of Native Advertising

Dark staircase spiraling down.Native advertising, and specifically native publishing programs, will struggle in the future.

It isn’t because publishers’ offerings are flawed, because visitors have developed sponsored content blindness or because we have all developed an aversion to all sponsored content.

It comes down to a marketplace issue that, over time, will be a thorn in the side of native publishing. It will lead to a degradation of media brands, an influx of low quality content and ultimately the loss of many of the benefits that made native publishing attractive in the first place.

First a quick definition of native publishing. Then we will look at the research that points to an upcoming challenge to the growing native publishing market. [Read more...]

Understanding Intent Behind Content Consumption

Content Marketing Crystal BallYou know millions of people saw your content. But do you know the answer to the more important question: why did they take the time to read it or watch it?

  • It isn’t because it was widely shared on Twitter or LinkedIn.
  • Your SEO program didn’t make them read it.
  • A content promotion program didn’t make it suddenly appealing.
  • Triggered emails gave them a link but didn’t make them click or spend their time with it.

These are ways people find your content, and without them your content marketing would fail.

But these are not the reasons someone chose to spend their time with your content. [Read more...]

LinkedIn Has Opened the Content Marketing Floodgates

Linkedin Centipedes at 2010 Bay to BreakersLinkedIn has gone Tumblr on us and B2B content marketers are drooling. Finally, you can publish directly on LinkedIn, along with people like Bill Gates and Richard Branson.

It seems like the perfect opportunity, but it is brand new territory. What should you expect going in? How should you approach it?

Although it has only been available for two weeks, and only to a handful of people, here are my initial expectations. [Read more...]

Change Is Overdue

Time To Change TracksI’ve had it! I’m sick of crappy content, fluffy sales claims and advice that ignores the real issue. And I hope you will help (more on that in a minute).

I’m tired of issues without examples, of the content marketers that are afraid of naming names and creating conflict.

Even worse, I’m tired of publishers that like to name drop and associate big brands with bad behaviors because it drives traffic, even when the brand was innocent.

The now common refrain says every company is a media company and every individual is a publisher. In one sense, it is true. [Read more...]

How Google Is Killing Native Advertising

How Google Is Killing Native AdvertisingNative advertising has been one of the hottest advertising topics of 2013. According to a recent survey, the majority of publishers now offer or plan to offer native advertising programs.

Two months ago, I examined the performance of more than 300 BrandVoice articles on Forbes, one of the most established native publishing platforms for B2B marketers.

One of the key reasons, however, is the surprising part. Google. [Read more...]

Top 3 Reasons Your Content Marketing Program Fails

Why Your Content Failed. Handwritten list of reasonsEveryone in B2B marketing says content marketing is important. Everyone is increasing content marketing’s share of the budget. And yet most B2B marketers don’t feel like their content marketing is effective. (Stats available from CMI’s benchmark report).

The outlook seems grim. Marketers are pouring more and more into something they aren’t confident in. These aren’t just small test budgets, content represents a big portion of overall marketing budgets as well. Yet confidence in the effectiveness of their content programs remains low.

So why do programs fail? Time and time again, B2B marketers keep making the same mistakes. Here are the top three reasons, based on my observations and conversations with other marketers, why content marketing initiatives fail. [Read more...]

Why Content Curation Is Not The Answer

There are no silver bullets in marketingThe biggest problem in B2B content marketing is that it requires content. Somehow, this most obvious of truths has become the thorn in the side of B2B marketing (and the inspiration for 1,000s of pieces of content).

So what if you could be a content marketer without actually creating content? Hallelujah! All your problems are solved!

Enter curation, the glittering solution for today’s content marketers.

On the surface curation sounds perfect. Publish or share carefully selected content created by others with your clients and prospects. By consistently and carefully curating over time, become the source your audience looks to for the news and information that matters to them. [Read more...]

The B2B Marketing Guide to Paid Content Distribution

Speed Up Content MarketingForrester recently released a report pointing out the failure of most content marketers to plan for adequate content distribution. And they’re right.

Marketers are slaving over content today, but almost no one sees that content.

Optimizing your content for search and distributing it through your own social and email channels is just the starting place. For most B2B marketers, it isn’t nearly enough. [Read more...]