If you produce content (and want to do a better job of planning, creating and tracking it), get your hands on Epic Content Marketing, a new book by Joe Pulizzi who founded Content Marketing Institute.
Joe packs an incredible amount of knowledge in over 300 pages. He doesn’t settle for generalizations or waste any space. Page after page is loaded with practical tips and great insights. He supplements his own wisdom with many examples of how companies are succeeding with content marketing (including Procter & Gamble and Kraft Foods).
I especially like how Joe sets the bar high – very high. He challenges marketers to be the leading authorities in their industries or niches. People should feel like they’re really missing out if they’re not keeping up with what you produce. In other words, creating quality content is OK, but why not make it something everyone can’t wait to read. Joe believes that should at least be the goal – to be an irreplaceable resource. “If you are not striving to be the go-to number one resource for your industry niche, you are settling for the comfortable, whatever that means to you in goal-setting terms.”
Early on, Joe offers caution about why content may not benefit your business: “It’s all about you. Remember, customers don’t care about you; they care about themselves and their problems. We often forget that point when we describe how wonderful out widget is (that no one cares about). The more you talk about yourself and your product, the less the content is spread and engaged in.” Joe explains the origin of content marketing and quickly moves into the business case for content marketing.
He covers everything from audience personas and editorial calendars to defining content assets and measuring your efforts.
Be sure to take in the six principles of epic content marketing that include filling a need, being consistent and having a point of view. Joe also addresses real-time content like Oreo’s Super Bowl tweet, “You Can Still Dunk in the Dark,” which was posted during the blackout at the Ravens-49ers game (it was retweeted over 10,000 times). “While Oreo may have caught lightning in a bottle, the point is clear: those that can create content off the back of popular culture or industry news have a competitive advantage,” Joe writes.
Epic Content Marketing also references countless web sites, resources, tools and other information. You won’t be disappointed.