Think Like A Journalist To Market Information
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Advertising and journalism are not two sides of the same coin. They are supposed to be miles apart in that the former is decidedly and intentionally biased, and the latter is not. At least in theory. But things are changing, and these days it pays to think like a journalist to market information.
Sam Slaughter of Contently posted a somewhat controversial article on Digiday last week, in which he states, “For brands to create content that truly engages their customers, they have to learn to think like journalists.” His point is that content creation and publication need to happen at the speed of news reporting, and that they should, in fact, be newsworthy, not hypey.
I agree with Slaughter’s thinking. But Kunar Patel at Percolate respectfully disagrees. In her rebuttal article on Digiday, Patel asserts, “Recognizing that distinction between journalism and marketing will make stronger content across the board. The reader deserves it. Journalism that sacrifices objectivity for ad dollars will lose its audience.”
OK, folks, all that being said, our information has to be substantive and timely, and we have to package it in a substantial way, in a timely manner. I’m pretty sure that’s what I’ve been teaching for over two decades already, if I do say so myself.
The job of an information marketer is to dig out and present information for the benefit of an audience. That sounds more like journalism than advertising to me. But that is the product creation phase.
In the product promotion phase an information marketer definitely becomes an advertiser. So, we have to think both ways to build our businesses.