Testing times for those who don't get content marketing

Testing times for those who don't get content marketing





Testing times for those who don't get content marketing


Tony Hallett
Managing director

Tony set up Collective Content in 2011 so brands can more easily become publishers and tell stories. This built on 15 years in media, from reporter to publishing director at Silicon Media Group, CNET Networks and CBS Interactive.

Here’s a game – have you ever listened to one of those frequency tests that works out how old you are based on what you can and can’t hear? There are a few versions of this on the web but here’s one from National Geographic’s Brain Games show (in part a triumph for a brand on Google SERPs but also because it’s what my daughter was watching the other night).

EarDid you take the test? Fun, right?

Some call this a Hearing Age Test. But with the rise of Gen Y workers, I couldn’t help think there is a valid argument for a Content Marketing Age Test.

The picture painted in the media is not just of content marketing as an unstoppable force (it is!) but that the world of marketing gets the trend and how to do it well. That’s nonsense.

Regrettably there are still some marketers who can’t help fall back on what they’ve done for years:

  • Talk about themselves and their products, services etc.
  • Use their own jargon and brand names when their customers speak a different way
  • Think of marketing as a one-way conversation
  • Place marketing budget in traditional places rather than those that prove their return

I could go on. But I hinted a moment ago that there is a change, in part driven by a new generation.

Those Gen Yers under 30 – albeit only in our anecdotal but very up-close-and-personal experience – mostly believe in doing things in a new way. Maybe they are so much better versed in social media and mobile, and have grown up living online. Who knows.

But as marketers they are much more inclined to:

  • Talk about the markets they work in, talk about their customers – talk about anything but themselves
  • Speak in plain terms, meeting audiences on common ground
  • Look to social media and live interaction as a way to ensure proper two-way engagement with customers and to be truly useful
  • Explore new channels and want to blend them together

As I say, I’m not sure why Gen Y is different. But if there was a Content Marketing Age Test my guess is that those under-30s are much more inclined to ‘get it’ along with a proportion of those from older generations. They operate at that frequency.

*photo credit: Travis Isaacs via photopin cc

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