Feasting On Content: Dinner With CC Chapman and Ann Handley

by Michelle McGinnis on Thursday, January 27, 2011 in Content Marketing

In Junta42’s annual report on content marketing spend last year, 59% of marketers surveyed said they planned to increase investment in 2010. Content marketing would represent a total of 33% of overall marketing budgets, the survey found.

Money is pouring into content marketing as more businesses recognize the value of publishing informative and educational content. Whenever dollars start rolling in it’s worth asking, Just what are we buying? Doing so can help separate the fads from the mainstays, the wheat from the chaff, if you will.

The new book, “Content Rules”, arrives exactly at that awkward point when a buzz term must become real discipline if it’s going to survive. The authors, Ann Handley and CC Chapman, take on the heroic task of simultaneously defining a still emerging practice and explaining how to do it right. No strangers to the work themselves, Ann and CC detail the benefits of content marketing, to tack the very practical concerns of business growth and revenue performance to the often abstract goals of translating ideas into words and pictures. Then they provide the know-how.

The goal is to convince and convert the reader, then teach the reader how to convince and convert. (For a more thorough and richer treatment of “Content Rules” see Joe Chernov’s review.)

Tonight, Eloqua is hosting a dinner to celebrate the publication of “Content Rules.” Some of the most influential brands in social media and content marketing will be there including attendees from Mashable, AOL, Involver, Xconomy, Nimble, CustomerThink and Taleo. You can see updates from the dinner by following the hashtag #ContentRules.

It’s not just a celebration of the book’s publication, which deserves its own praise. It’s also a toast to content marketing’s maturation from hot topic to genuine discipline – a discipline that is helping fuse the art of marketing with the science of marketing.

After all, in today’s world there’s not enough currency in being a market leader. You need to be a thought leader too. Ann and CC are demonstrating to marketers that you can be both.

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