Content Marketing Institute Webinar on Brand Journalism

Brand journalism can bring significant benefits to your social media strategy as discussed in a recent webinar by Content Marketing Institute.

With the rise of social media platforms and the ease with which anyone can now create and share their own content, brands now have the opportunity to develop their own stories – in that distinct brand voice – and share those stories directly with their clients and prospects. 

We thought we’d recap the webinar for those of you who missed it. Look for our own brand journalism guidelines in future posts.

It’s NOT the Same as Traditional PR

According to Managing Editor at Eloqua Jesse Noyes in the webinar, “PR is about pitching the brand to the media.  You help shape the story, but you don’t craft the story.  Brand journalism is about creating the actual content, finding the best ways to share it, and telling the stories of your people, customers, and brand.”

You’re skipping the middleman, essentially. You’re no longer hoping for a third party to tell your brand’s story, you’re doing it yourself.

Has Objectivity Gone By The Wayside?

According to Noyes, the key word to remember with brand journalism is brand.  There is no pretense here. While you are borrowing concepts from traditional journalism, the panelists note that the focus is still on your organization and its values.

Boeing’s Communications Director Todd Blecher notes,Brand journalism is the use of a journalistic approach to storytelling on behalf of a brand.  It is the mindset of assembling and delivering a compelling story, but it is not impartial.  It presents the brand’s messages and perspectives.

Blecher and Noyes think that while we expect a certain level of objectivity from our traditional journalists, whenever possible, that’s not the case with brand journalism.  Your content is telling a one sided story; your story.

Know Your Audience

Again I’ll quote Jesse Noyes’ webinar notes directly. Noyes considers his audience to be “anyone who can have an impact on our brand and business – customers, prospects, employees etc.  But it also includes the influencers or voices who might never buy from us, but consume and share our content.”

Accept that not every piece of content you produce will drive a slew of fresh leads into your sales pipeline.  A brand that is creating and sharing terrific stories and entertaining content, however, will get noticed and those sales leads will come as you establish yourself as not only a source of information regarding your particular industry but a place to regularly stop by for good reading material in general.

Our own team has some thoughts on brand journalism as well, for a look at that, check out this post from our own Senior Brand Journalist Leslie Poston.  And for more tips on creating a content marketing strategy for YOUR brand be sure to check out our free ebook, How to Craft a Successful Social Media Content Marketing Plan.