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Joe Pulizzi: content marketing strategy first

Joe Pulizzi at one of our events in 2010
Joe Pulizzi at one of our events in 2010

Earlier this week, we posted about Lee Odden’s interview with SAP’s Michael Brenner on content marketing at the occasion of Content Marketing World 2012 and the content marketing eBook Lee published. In the interview the importance of a solid content marketing strategy was mentioned.

Lee Odden also interviewed content marketing godfather Joe Pulizzi, the organizer of the event. In the interview with Lee, Joe explains what has changed in the use of content marketing and how his work with content as a marketing asset evolved. Of course, he also provides some content marketing tips! However, most of all he stresses the importance of having a good content marketing strategy.

Joe Pulizzi sees a significant correction in paid media and more attention for owned media and corporate storytelling. However, there is still a lot of training, education and culture change to do. Pulizzi believes we ain’t seen nothing yet regarding content marketing.

Content marketing strategy considerations

When asked about the definition of content marketing, Joe sticks to the concept of content marketing as thinking and acting like a publisher. Storytelling is key in it but so is having a good content marketing strategy. Too many marketers have attempted social media, lead generation and SEO efforts without any content marketing strategy behind them. The content marketing strategy come first. Pulizzi argues that this has been unsuccessfully attempted in the reverse order for too long.

So, it’s not about the channels and tactics but about the content marketing strategy first and this requires goals, different forms of content for different customer touchpoints, mapping the needs of people, the channels they prefer and the content or stories, etc.

Pulizzi also identifies three key pointers for managing content over a long period of time.

  1. The first is to understand the reason and purpose for the content creation and content marketing strategy. This includes examining how the content will affect the customer. But also what goals we want to serve and what’s our content marketing mission statement for the target groups we want to use.
  2. The second is to (partially) embrace outsourcing of content marketing as most companies do. Obviously, you need to combine that with having the right content marketing expert team in-house (make it hybrid). Having a content marketing strategy and all the content we need to reach our goals is one thing, being able to produce, set up measurement processes, etc. another.
  3. The third is to find a specialty in both content area and buying/target group. Pulizzi feels that it’s better to be a niche expert at the top of the field than a generalist without true expertise in any area.

Joe also shares eight tools that all content marketers need in their content marketing arsenal: Compendium, Contently, DivvyHQ, Inbound Writer, InnoBlogs, Kapost, Skyword and Zerys.

Finally, he provides some advice for companies that have a hard time finding internal support for their content marketing plans and shares his favourite content marketing secret.

Read all about it in Lee’s interview and don’t forget to download his content marketing eBook!

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