Marketing as Journalism

15 Oct

Invest in the Upswing #2

When I talk to clients about managing communications and marketing planning, I like to have them imagine those old movies about TV networks, where executives sit in their fancy offices adding and erasing programs from the big schedule board. The point:  every day, every week, every month, you need to decide how marketing will facilitate interaction with the market — online, offline, in social media, with bloggers, with professional reporters, at trade shows, on the website. As many have remarked, the newsroom model is a good place to start.  Every day, the news organization must determine its top stories, and how it’s going to tell those stories.

Albert Maruggi does a nice nine-minute podcast this morning with new media PR guru David Meerman Scott about viewing your marketing department as a newsroom.  It’s worth a listen.  Maruggi says that (transcribed as accurately as I could), “marketing as a mouthpiece for all that is good within a company is being viewed cynically.” Instead, he says, “look at trends in an industry and where your company fits in that trend line …news within a company and how it impacts trends and social communities.”

Meerman Scott cites the idea some have called “brand journalism,” noting that where the traditional advertising and direct marketing model interrupts its audience, the future is in publishing “information, multimedia…that your audience wants to consume.”

Organizations looking to invest in the upswing can look to this model as a place to start.  Rather than creating new advertising to build mass awareness, consider find out where the conversations are happening today – Facebook, MySpace, online forums, media websites, blogs – see if there’s a contribution you can make.  Invest in content — video, audio, photos, articles, speeches, news — that engages your market online.

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