The evolution of content marketing

Journalism and marketing have embraced the digital world. Positions such as "director of content" and "visual journalism" have begun to replace the rather traditional roles of simply "marketing director" and "reporter". Of course, this signals the continued shift into the exponentially expanding world of content marketing. Terms such as private blog networks, cross-channel revenue generation and social media content are more widespread than ever before.

However, the term "content" can be rather broad in scope and can leave some scratching their heads in regards to what their position really entails. This may make the job of journalists, editors and publicists even more challenging than only a few years ago.

One of the changes that we have seen is that due to the increasing use of mobile devices and other such technologies, the content itself needs to be more "modern" and it should be presented with a flair that could be lacking within static text. Interactive presentations, videos, podcasts and infographics all fall into this category; primarily because they need to be portable and sharable across multiple platforms. Indeed, interaction is king within the digital content domain.

However, an increased turnaround in regards to content and the necessity to cater to a larger audience (and embrace a multi-channel approach) may leave some wondering as to whether or not the quality of the material itself is becoming more diluted to meet the ever-evolving requirements of digital-content marketing. It is therefore no great surprise that some dyed-in-the-wool journalists have been left behind by this change. Still, progress is impossible to deny and with the advent of the digital age, this type of approach is likely to be here to stay.

Of course, the bulk of digital campaigns are generally designed to present users and viewers with the ability to purchase a product or service whilst being entertained in a way that doesn’t damage brand recall. So, it only stands to reason that professionals are now viewing content marketing as a turnkey solution to better advertise their product to the masses.

What is most interesting is that many journalists are now finding themselves in a similar position to their marketing counterparts; convincing end users to take the next step and interact. In a not-so-subtle way, this call to action should only be expected to increase into the future. It will indeed be quite interesting to observe how this situation continues to evolve. In other words, content marketing is here to stay.

Anouchka Burton, associate director at PR firm Broadgate Mainland

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