I’ve been involved in an interesting thread over on LinkedIn all week. One of the members of the discussion said that content marketing was essentially useless: “too many words, not enough substance.”
He liked the BMW tagline for its ability to help drive sales. He seemed to feel that most copywriting should be done in just 6 words or less, and that content marketing should be done away with altogether.
I just can’t even begin to say how much I disagree with this stance. First, BMW is a big brand and, as another one of the members of discussion mentioned, has also made a decision to engage in content marketing.
But even if they hadn’t, they’re a household name. They can afford to play the name recognition card.
But I would venture to guess that the name recognition card is displaying less and less value these days. Most people tune out advertising.
Sure, people know that content marketing is done in the hopes of capturing attention and earning trust. If a man brings me flowers and asks me on a date I know he’s hoping essentially the same thing. That doesn’t stop the gesture from being appreciated, or from having its desired effect.
In fact, relying on clever words without substance (however cleverly those words are arranged) is the equivalent of falling back on cheesy pick-up lines without putting in the work of forging a real relationship. And it’s going over about as well in the minds of customers.
So yeah. Even if you don’t want to factor Google into the equation, content marketing works. You can say it’s a different discipline from copywriting or you can acknowledge that you need both copywriting and content marketing to put together a successful strategy in the age of the Internet. But I just don’t think it’s wise to dismiss it altogether.
After all, a lot of very intelligent companies spend beaucoup bucks investing in it.
And, as I mentioned on the Group discussion, more and more people are reaching to their mobile phones to do everything. They aren’t doing that to watch commercials and listen to taglines. Having something interesting for them to read or see is just about the only way you’re going to reach out to them.
I’m not knocking a good tagline. It’s got it’s place. But failing to recognize the value of content marketing is just short-sighted.
For some additional statistics on content marketing, and on SEO and whether you ought to pay attention to either one, see one of my recent posts over on TVS Internet Marketing.