The story of content: New documentary film on content marketing


Content marketing is one of the hottest topics in marketing communications and public relations. This new 44 minute documentary film from the Content Marketing Institute explores the evolution of content marketing through case studies of brands that successfully use it such as Kraft, John Deere, Marriott and inevitably Red Bull.

The CMI suggest that it will help those who don’t ‘get it’ to ‘get it’. It’s a great film, but I’m not convinced as I can’t see how you’d convince sceptics to sit through a 45 minute documentary in the first place.

So not only is it too long, it’s also too American – you do see some international voices and brands, but not many. And some of those interviewed are just a bit too enthusiastic and OTT for many global audiences. That said, if you’re a PR professional who wants to learn more about the basics of content marketing, it’s well worth a watch. There are also parts of it you might want to show as short clips to the sceptics.

There’s a lot of hot air and hype about content marketing as lot of the stuff that’s ‘content’ is just good old-fashioned public relations tactics. The documentary does a good job of showing how old and established some of these techniques are, such as John Deere’s The Furrow magazine.

PR has always been about doing real stories – be it news, customer stories (case studies), tips, advice etc – rather than made-up stuff that advertising folk do. And that’s the difference. Content marketing is being done by advertising people with bigger budgets to tell and share these true stories. PR people have always dealt in facts and truth, but we need to be better at telling those truthful stories.

Source: Content Marketing Institute

I run a ‘Content Marketing for PR” course that can be delivered either as an open course for delegates from different companies or as an in-house workshop. Get in touch if you want to find out more.

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