Content Marketing Institute’s Joe Pulizzi Tells All
Regardless of company size, content marketing continues to be at the top of every marketer’s list. Content by itself isn’t enough. You must create the right kind of information to ensure that it stands out from the crowd regardless of the amount of resources you have.
To understand what’s driving this momentum and to get actionable insights marketers can use, we spoke with Joe Pulizzi, founder of Content Marketing Institute and author of Epic Content Marketing and Get Content, Get Customers. Joe is undeniably the king of content marketing.
1. What makes content marketing so hot?
Joe Pulizzi: Customers are in complete control of the buying process. Cutting through the clutter to get attention is harder today than it ever has been. As a result, traditional marketing just isn’t enough anymore.
Without starting with a content strategy that works is the key. To this end, truly epic content marketing stands out and will drive search engine optimization, lead generation and social media. This all starts with telling great stories. Therefore, we need to take our role as publishers seriously to drive growth for the future
2. What do you consider the key attributes of a content marketing strategy?
Joe Pulizzi: Content marketing starts with a keen understanding of our customers’ informational needs and pain points. Then we can meet those pain points with compelling content, which positions us as trusted informational providers.
So many brands start with the “what?” For both our own marketing programs and our customers, what we really need to do is ask the “why?” It’s the secret sauce that makes content marketing effective. Once we become our customers’ trusted informational providers they are more inclined to buy from us now and in the future.
3. Where does one get content for their business?
Joe Pulizzi: Most brands have plenty of content, but it’s not in story form. You need great stories. They’re all around us. Get them from your employees and your customers. We need to first understand where these stories are happening and then create a process where we can scale these stories and make an impact in the lives and jobs of our customers. (BTW: Here’s help with your corporate stories.)
4. From a business perspective, is content marketing expensive? What’s the rationale for your answer?
Joe Pulizzi: In most cases, content marketing isn’t expensive compared to buying advertising in other publications and media. But it’s not cheap either. Content marketing takes time and resources to get it right. It especially takes patience. Great content is a promise to your customers. As such, it needs to be delivered consistently like a traditional publisher does. But it’s not an either/or scenario. Smart brands integrate all aspects of traditional marketing and content marketing to build a trusting relationship with our customers.
5. What is the biggest mistake that you see marketers make with content marketing?
Joe Pulizzi: In most cases, content marketing fails because of a lack of consistency. Marketers view content marketing more as a campaign than as a continuous, consistent delivery of epic content. Here’s a full list of other ways content marketing can fail.
6. Why is Content Marketing World important for marketers to attend? What distinguishes it from other conferences and events?
Joe Pulizzi: Great events are a mixture of education and entertainment. At Content Marketing World, we believe that in order to open up our minds to new thinking, we need to let our guards down first. That happens through entertainment. Yes, we like to have fun at Content Marketing World but then we follow that up with over 60 sessions of unique and truly “how-to” content that you can take back to your businesses to attract and retain customers. We’ve nearly tripled our attendance over the past three years proving that this method works for marketers.
7. What’s new at Content Marketing World this year?
Joe Pulizzi: Amazing keynotes like William Shatner, Jonathan Mildenhall from Coca-Cola, best-selling author Jay Baer and more. We have brands presenting like Hershey, Cisco Systems, Intel, SAP, Four Seasons, REI and more. We will hit on key issues such as content integration, content discovery, content strategy, content technology and more. Also new this year are Lunch and Learns, where attendees can take a deep dive into more than 20 sessions on key content marketing issues. Honestly, there is something for everyone (including two nights out at both the Rock Hall of Fame and the House of Blues).
8. Who are you personally most excited to hear at Content Marketing World this year and why?
Joe Pulizzi: Well, I’m excited about Shatner’s take on storytelling. But honestly, the fact that over 1,000 marketers from over 30 countries will come together around this growing discipline of content marketing amazes me.
9. What is the biggest takeaway from Content Marketing World?
Joe Pulizzi: Simply put, if attendees don’t leave Content Marketing World with the ability to take what they’ve learned to attract and retain customers with content, then we’ve failed. Every marketer there will have different issues that need addressing. That’s why we have over 60 sessions. Content marketing is too important not to take seriously in any-sized organization today. Now is the time to either get started or to refine your firm’s strategy.
Thank you Joe for your content marketing insights. Your points are on target since marketers’ hot buttons are: content marketing cost, and how to keep feeding the content machine.
If you sign up for Content Marketing World by July 31st using the code Heidi100, you’ll save $100. It’s an offer you can’t pass up.
I hope to see you in Cleveland in September. Please email me and let me know that you’re coming so that we can meet in real life.
Join me & Kevin Spacey at Content Marketing World 2014 Meet me in real life at CMW 2014 in Cleveland.
BTW – Don't fret if you missed my session last year: Get all the content of CMWorld 2013 OnDemand now!
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Photo Credit: Joe Pulizzi image supplied by Joe Pulizzi;