WSJ: The New Branding Strategy: Churn Out ‘Content’


At one of my first AAPN meetings, in the late 90's when we were a Made in USA mostly small contractor association, I asked one of our factory members about his marketing plan. "Marketing plan?", he replied in shock, "I'm just a contractor, I ain't got nothen to sell".

And BAM, that's when I knew NAFTA would roll over these guys like a sudden tsunami, which it did. We went from 350 members to 150 from Jan 1995 to Jan 1997.

The other recollection I have about marketing came from my IBM training in the late 70's. They taught us, "it takes 6 calls to sell something and most people give up after 3". Kurt Cavano updated that about 10 years ago when he said "today it takes over a dozen calls, and most of them are online".

Today, its more like continuous calls – endless, cumulative, consuming content WHICH the following article argues for in our industry.

We're doing our part with our blog which is here and continuous Facebook and Twitter updates from our enormously skilled partner William Colvard, Co-Founder of Now What? Studio. You'd be advised to get online all the time too.

The New Branding Strategy: Churn Out ‘Content’
Co-opting the tools of traditional journalism, brands from Red Bull to Ralph Lauren have refashioned themselves into content-creating machines
WSJ: Jan. 28, 2019

SO FAR THIS MORNING, I’ve scrolled past tweets from Taco Bell, GQ Magazine and Lowe’s Home Improvement; I’ve read an article about luxury luggage on the website of Ssense, a Montreal-based retailer; and I’ve “liked” Instagram posts by Belgian label Dries Van Noten and Patagonia. It’s not even 10 a.m., and I’ve already consumed a whopping dose of “content.” Content, these days, is the catchall term for all the media that we consume, both traditional and brand-generated. Tweets are content. Articles are content. Instagram posts are definitely content. Streaming TV shows or movies can also be considered content. “Somebody the other day called the word ‘content’ a ‘suitcase word,’” said Yale Breslin, a 33-year-old self-professed “content creator” who has worked at advertising agencies and magazines in New York. By referencing luggage, said Mr. Breslin, his colleague meant that, “No one really knows what it is anymore—it just holds anything.”

Content surrounds us like Los Angeles smog, so thick and heavy that at times it’s all we can see. In some circles, it’s become a dirty word: Merely uttering it can elicit a chorus of groans, particularly in a room full of millennials, who themselves, armed with an Instagram account or a Twitter login, know full well that anyone can be a content creator. To keep up, brands from Starbucks to Brooks Brothers to Range Rover have redefined themselves as content-creating machines. In many cases, “content” has become a less promotional, gussied up alternative to say “advertising.”Read More


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