What is Content Marketing? A Primer for Non Content Marketers

"I don't get it" conversation bubble

So what’s this content marketing thing everyone’s talking about?

Have you ever noticed the length that some content marketers go to to not only use the term ‘content marketing,’ but also actively spread it around? The term is popping up everywhere, and while most marketers and savvy entrepreneurs understand what it means, not everyone does. If you have ever gotten blank stares like I have when telling people what you do, or have been the one staring blankly because content marketing just isn’t on your radar, then you know what I mean. (more…)

Viral Content: How Barack Obama Rocked It Between Two Ferns

Barack Obama Shows the Power of Content Marketing on "Between Two Ferns"

Barack Obama made a content marketing slam dunk this week when his interview on “Between Two Ferns” went viral. Hosted by Zack Galifianakis, the satirical Internet talk show featured on the website Funny or Die has become increasingly popular among young adults. The periodic program consists of humorous, albeit painfully awkward, interviews between Galifianakis and a variety of Hollywood celebs ranging from Toby McGuire to Sally Fields. While a far cry from the typical media outlets for the President of the United States, the humorous six-minute interview proved to be a strategic success. Not only did Obama get to flex his funny bone, but he also drove home the importance of one of his biggest agenda items. (more…)

Why Stephen King Should Be Your New Content Hero

Stephen King, "On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft", Content Hero

I’m not exactly what you would call a big Stephen King fan. Yeah, I’ve read a few of his novels over the years — most notably 11/22/63, his fantastic 860-pager about the JFK assassination — but the types of horror and science fiction books he’s best known for generally don’t blow my skirt up. Still, when a friend encouraged me to check out one of his nonfiction pieces called “On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft,” I was intrigued. (more…)

Is Social Media the Fast Food Version of Communication?

McDonald's logo, fast food

In 1963, Ray Kroc — the man who turned McDonald’s into a franchise empire — appeared on TV to proudly serve up the legendary fast food joint’s one billionth burger. By the time he died 21 years later, just 10 months short of the sale of his 50 billionth burger, he and his company had forever changed the way we eat by making fast food a part of our daily lives. (more…)

Compelling Content and the Case of the Ass-Eating Pants

Kjeragbolten used to represent a wedge

One of my favorite German words is ‘Arschfristhose,’ which is the term used to express the concept a wedgie (those of you in need a refresher on what a wedgie is can find an excellent description from Wikipedia here). While not a word most of us tend to use in polite company in either language, I like the German version so much because of how wonderfully descriptive it is. Whereas the word ‘wedgie’ certainly implies the appropriate wedging action, it’s otherwise pretty vague. The German word’s literal translation, which equates to ‘ass-eating pants,’ by contrast, couldn’t be more vivid. (more…)

When Language, Content, and Communication Converge

images for content marketing, communications

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been fascinated by the way people communicate. It began with a passion for learning how to express myself in other languages — initially in Spanish and, over time, in German, French, and Italian. From a relatively young age, I saw these languages as a gateway into the cultures of the people who spoke them. In my view, those cultures often remained closed, at least in part, to those who didn’t take the time to understand how the people living within them communicated. (more…)