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Do You Really Understand Content Marketing?

No, we’re not curating this article to our blog just because the lead art depicts a man making a very wise choice. David Germano of Magnetic Content Studios (a happy PublishThis customer) asks an interesting question about a term that we in the content business accept as meaningful and useful: Content Marketing.

We all think we know what it means and, as the Godfather of Content Marketing himself often points out, it’s really been around for a long time even if it only hit buzzword status earlier this decade. But do we really have a firm grasp on how the term is understood beyond the real content geeks?

Germano challenges us to think about whether the emphasis is in the right place (can switching the order of those words help?) and if the recent attempts by publishers to develop Content Studios to dip their toes into this space is the right choice.

Will publishers trying their hand at content with specific goals in mind get lost in the balance of entertaining and being useful versus actually building trust and creating brand value? Will they understand that the ‘marketing’ is the goal of the ‘content’ or will they stumble in the creation of content for a particular purpose?


The question is an interesting one and it reminds me of why we see so many brands interested in Big Content and how the right technology can provide enough content intelligence and production scale to let them produce their own content rather than relying on outside sources. But please read on (it’s a #longread for sure) and judge for yourself. We’d love to see your comments below, too.

Over the past few years, marketing analysts and trade journals have been reporting an acceleration in content marketing’s adoption. But is their reporting accurate? There is a strong case to be made for pragmatism. In an effort to aggressively capitalize on its growing appeal, many marketing and media organizations are loosely applying the phrase content marketing to classify a very broad spectrum of content initiatives.