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Harper Collins and its business development team are a great example of how publishers are adapting to the business of content, not simply bound sheaves of pulped wood.
In an indicator of how service-based the UK economy has become, Harper Collins now sums up its business as following:
"We create bespoke content based on products and campaigns for our clients."
"We work with content, not just books, across print, digital, mobile and more."
"Our editorial expertise, content and creativity enable clients to communicate brand identity and values."
One of the areas of the publishing house where this is most evident is Harper Collins Children’s Books. I decided to find out more about its business model.
Last year, Coca-Cola launched the Journey website as its own media outlet, using an editorial, image-heavy format.
Fuelled by the brand's Content 2020 plan, the redesign was described as 'the most ambitious rethink of Coca-Cola’s web properties' since it launched the first website in 1995.
The company has gone from being declared 'creatively bankrupt' by a chief exec in 2004 to being named Creative Marketer of the Year at Cannes in 2013.
In the late 1990s the Philadelphia Inquirer published a series on “the dramatic raid of Mogadishu”. It evolved into a book and a movie called, as you may have already guessed, ‘Black Hawk Down’.
The initial extended feature first made its debut in print, and was then pushed onto the website, where video, audio, maps, photos and related links helped bring the story to life. The site, which is still available online, looks like this:
This was one of the first mainstream media attempts to use the web to enhance long form content, and while the page might not look terribly pretty, all of the right kind of functionality is there.
Since then things have moved on considerably, and in an age of HTML5 I have seen some stunning examples of what can be achieved with online storytelling. Here are a few that are well worth checking out.
Let's start with the obvious...
Content is arguably the biggest trend to hit online marketing since the advent of social media, video and search.
Content is everywhere. And with content comes the opportunity for new, exciting, content based advertising models.
Enter native advertising. Find out what all content marketers need to know.
There are some words in the English language that have huge fluctuations in positive and negative connotations depending on the context in which they're given. For instance, calling someone 'mental' can have a huge number of meanings and implications.
'Cult' is another of those paradoxical terms. To some it sparks visions of watching DVDs of Monk or Twin Peaks, to others it suggests communes, chanting and tall stories of aliens and an afterlife paradise.
But ultimately, building a cult following for your online content is something the majority of businesses are after, whether they explicitly state it in their mission statement or not. "Creating a pattern of ritual behaviour in connection with specific objects", that's what we're all really doing isn't it?
Disclaimer: I hate infographics!
If not the medium, the execution is so often poor, as is the chosen subject. But I feel differently when it comes to brands. I’m interested in learning about brands and their activity.
So, I’ve collected 10 stellar infographics here for your viewing pleasure. They’re not all by brands themselves, but all include brands and their footprints.
They range from the mind-blowingly expansive (see the brands that own the brands) to the fruity and fun (see the Die Hard promotion).
Just click on each stub to enjoy the full infographic. Happy stat attack!
Before we get started, I have two apologies to make: one to every company featured in this blog post (my opinion obviously has little bearing on the success of your marketing efforts), and another for writing a post with a wholly negative premise.
In my defence, it’s often a lot easier to run your own emails against a checklist of ‘do nots’, as it arguably supplies some super-quick fixes.
Anyway, off we go.
I’ve never been one to submit to catchphrases. The business world and, by extension the marketing world, is full of them.
“Net-net, at the end of the day, we are living with a new normal of big data.” Just typing these words gives me the shivers. But these phrases emerge, typically, around meaningful trends.
For the past three years the dialogue about content marketing has gone from a whisper to a roar. And the expression 'content strategy' is now popular discussion.
On many occasions I’ve heard pundits declare that 'Content is King'. Most pundits have a vested interest so I understand the tendency toward hyperbole. But I want to make one thing clear. I disagree.
Content is not king. It is not a strategy. Content is a means to an end, a tactic. A very, very important tactic. But a business’s objective is not to create content but rather create enterprise value.
Content marketing adds to enterprise value by sustaining a measure of relevancy with people who engage with it in order to sell more products and services for the first time and over time.
Relevance is the goal.
I like to think I've seen a lot of tweets, enough to know a good one when I see it.
So often, I am completely exasperated looking at the dadaist sludge that dribbles out of corporate and brand Twitter accounts. So I've decided to do something about it and write this complete guide to writing interesting tweets.
It's somewhat subjective, but I've given at least 60 tweets here to illustrate my various points. I'll define interesting as something funny/persuasive/compelling/thought-provoking/informative etc - pretty much any tweet that can draw the user's attention.
There is a lot of 'don't' as well as a lot of 'do', and of course, knowing your brand and your audience is key to interesting your followers.
Hopefully there'll be some scenarios you recognise in here, and some reminders.
Please leave your pet hates and great loves in the comments below.
Marketing automation solutions alone cannot get you the marketing performance transformation you’re hoping for - you need to get the company culture and skills aligned with it for true success.
To find out how you can do that, read the next in this this two-part blog post series.
In part one, I looked at the skills required to implement marketing automation software and why a transformation on a cultural level needs to occur before any system can be successfully implemented. Here i explain the next steps in that process.
Bob Fear is Digital Content and Marketing Manager at Virgin, and he recently been involved in the relaunch of Virgin.com.
He has devised the core Virgin brand’s digital content and social strategy from scratch, and will be speaking about using data to create engaging branded content at our JUMP event on October 9.
I've been asking Bob about the presentation, and Virgin's approach to content and social media...