Week in content marketing: 11 March

August Media has announced a deal to produce for Alegta, a fast-growing pharmaceutical company focused on developing novel targeted therapies for patients with cancer.

August won the contract to develop the corporate website as well as create Algeta's Annual Report for 2012 following a recent competitive pitch.

Mark Lonergan, Managing Director, August said: "Algeta is a company with true global vision. The projects we have created together help position the business for an exciting future."

Mike Booth, SVP Communications, Algeta, commented: "Working with the August team has been a pleasure from the start. The website and Annual Report the team has created for Algeta successfully reflect the Norwegian heritage of our business while highlighting our transition to a commercial enterprise."

There are more details here.

There's good news too for content marketing company The Fabl, as one of its products, Take Stock, has received a major boost. The marketing platform, that allows delivered foodservice companies to connect with their customers  and is available as a bi-monthly, hard copy magazine, supported by a website, twitter and pinterest, will be rolled out to the Today's group wholesale members over the course of this year.

The 52-page publication, which features business-boosting ideas for caterers, new product releases and wholesaler news, was a big success when trialled in 2012 and will now feature Holdsworth Foods, one of the largest delivered wholesale members of the Today's Group. This will include a section dedicated to the company's news and activities.

Bill Laird, Managing Director of The Today's Group, commented: "This is a great opportunity for us to build on the services we offer to our wholesale members. I have long been an advocate of caterers adapting to the latest methods of communication and wholeheartedly believe that ‘Take Stock' will help establishments grow their business; whether they are viewing the publication online, following it on Twitter or receiving the hard copy with their deliveries. The publication is also a great way for us to talk to the people buying products directly, to advertise promotions and to alert users of new products. I am confident that our wholesaler members and their customers will enjoy Take Stock as much as we do at Today's Head Office."

There has been a lot of discussion in both mainstream media and on the CMA blog this week about the future for content marketing.

Justin Pearse, head of innovation at marketing services agency Bite and former editor of New Media Age wrote a very thoughtful piece for The Guardian newspaper about the hype surrounding Content Marketing.

Pearse says that is essential that brands understand the importance of entertaining and enthralling their customers.

He wrote ‘Brands are continually advised to start acting as publishers online. That every company is a media company online is now a truism.

However, to act like a publisher, any content a brand produces must be developed purely to satisfy its consumers' interests. No media company, from Sky to the Guardian to MTV, produces content to do anything other than enthrall their customers. It's only by a laser-sharp focus on their interests that they can attract the audiences that advertisers will pay to target.

We're facing a content deluge online in 2013. The interruptive advertising model of old is fast dying out as digital media give always-on consumers the ability to take control of their relationships with brands.'

In a post that makes several similar points Bharati Ahuja writing for SearchEngineWatch claims that SEO and content marketing aren't at odds but are two sides of the same coin.

She argues, ‘Quality content seems to be the main edifice on which any SEO campaign can gain a deep-rooted search presence.

You share quality content with the groups, circles, or people you're connected with on various social media platforms. If that content is valuable and informative, only then does it have the potential to be shared further, go viral, and reap the targeted return on investment (ROI).'

But then warns, ‘This shift of focus to content creation (and content marketing) has created a misconception in the minds of some website owners that just because they publish content regularly on their website or blog that their SEO is taken care of. Content creation isn't SEO.'

There have also been some probing and thoughtful articles on our own website this month. One of the most original is by James Cash, Agency Managing Editor, Wardour, who compares the construction of a magazine to caring for a baby.

For example James argues that the persistent crying of a baby isn't hugely different from the worrying of an over anxious account manager. He says, ‘As with an account manager who won't stop fretting, follow your mother-in-law's advice: "Let him cry, it's the only exercise he gets."'

Another fascinating piece on the CMA blog focuses on the way in which the UK leads the way in international content marketing.

It highlights five reasons why the UK is at forefront of content marketing including the unrivalled experience in the UK content marketing industry and the high level of quality that is byword for the magazines and website that CMA members produce.

‘Whether it's content produced for a sleepy Yorkshire village or every country in the world, UK agencies understand that the most important element for any campaign is quality - quality of editorial, quality of strategy, quality of measurement. Only by producing quality content will the reader be engaged and encouraged to act - no matter where they are in the world.'

Another fascinating post highlights what the author sees as the worrying declines of bylines in content marketing. Paul Keers of White Light Media thinks that the issue might be because brands believe that their own voice is the best in which to address the public.

He says this is worrying, because it fails to understand a key difference between branded editorial and copywriting.

He argues, ‘Then, there's the imprimatur of their byline; the client's brand, and their communication, is enhanced by association with an appropriate newspaper, programme or magazine.  And there's the independence and authority which bylines bring to coverage. Named authors won't risk their own integrity - and that raises readers' trust in the communication overall. "Says who?" is a reasonable question, which a byline answers.'

There's an interview with Martin Clarke, publisher of Mail Online, in the FT in which he has described the Daily Mail's all-conquering website as the "crack cocaine" of journalism. Clarke said people are addicted to it as he talked about the success of the paper that has beaten The New York Times and The Guardian to become the world's biggest newspaper online.

Clarke said, ‘People are addicted to it. It's like journalism crack' as the FT reported how the Mail Online was planning to aggressively expand its international digital media empire, with plans to hire teams of reporters and ad executives across the US.

It is a fascinating read and gives a very real insight into how traditional media companies can create content with massive universal appeal.

Finally two important social media related stories that were worth exploring this week.

Net Imperative has an update about the latest tweak from YouTube. The website has created ‘One Channel', a new look channel design for video content creators. 

According to NI, ‘The move forms part of Google's strategy to turn YouTube into a more TV-friendly (and hence more ad friendly) experience, while encouraging content creators to upload more videos by giving them their own channel, in turn ramping up traffic to the site.

Although many members make no use of the channel feature on YouTube, some content creators have turned the channel feature into a thriving business empire, such as Smosh, which garners millions of subscribers and thousands of advertising dollars a month.

The channel has been in limited beta test since early February, and has been introduced to make a video uploader's channel look slick across different screen sizes and devices, adapting its style for the occasion, such as mobiles, tablets and TVs.'

Finally there has been a lot of discussion online about Facebook's revamp of its news feeds and what this might mean for brands.

Mikal E. Belicove, writing for Forbes, suggests that, ‘For businesses and brands that rely on Facebook for getting advertising messages in front of targeted audiences, the update  redesigned News Feed offers additional opportunities for exposure. In particular, notice the floating advertising section (viewable in the lower right quadrant of the first image above), which contains sponsored display advertisements, sponsored stories, and targeted display ads. The updated redesigned UI contains up to 10 ad slots - at least three more than the previous interface. And when scrolling down the News Feed, at least four of those items remain dynamically present in the right-hand column.

Finally, for those of you whose engagement and reach increases when you publish photographs, you should appreciate the more vibrant look and feel of your published photos once they hit the News Feed.'

Posted in
11thMar 2013

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