Content Marketing vs. Brand Journalism: What’s the difference, and why does it matter?

Do you know the difference between content marketing and brand journalism? Here’s the abbreviated version:

One is about your audience. The other is about you.

In other words, one educates your leads, and the other promotes your brand. Knowing the difference between the two, and how it influences the messaging you should craft, will make your new business development easier to manage.

Content Marketing

Content marketing is short, informative material that you send to leads in order to make their business easier. Gifting this knowledge, when done correctly, warms them up to new business discussions with you. Content is more effective if it a) demonstrates your knowledge of your leads’ market, b) establishes your credibility as a trusted authority, and c) provides material that will benefit your leads first.

This applies to outbound marketing through prospecting automation, as well as inbound marketing through website blogs, social media posts, landing pages, ebooks, and case studies.

All of this content should focus on your leads, so that they begin to focus on you. Give a little to get a little.

Brand Journalism

Brand journalism shifts focus to your business, using promotional material to share exciting news, events, and stories with your leads. It’s what most sales reps gravitate toward because it’s more PR- and advertising-based, and can be leveraged on the same platforms as content marketing.

Have a new product to offer? Post about it. Want to share the latest problem your team overcame and the lessons they learned? Formalize a case study. Think your followers are missing out on one of your services? Craft a blog that gives them the full picture.

This marketing style is more effective with warm leads, particularly those already in your normal sales cycle, because they know who you are, what you offer, and how you’re positioned in their market. This makes it easier for them to stay engaged with your brand as you’re self-promoting, as long as the information you provide is relevant and entertaining.

Why distinguish the two?

At the end of the day, what you call these two styles of new business development isn’t as important as knowing the purpose of each. Make sure your messaging is appropriate for the audience you’re targeting; otherwise, you risk having it fall flat — or worse, turning your leads off completely!

It’s essentially the difference between telling someone, “Hey, we’re great at a, b, and c, so let’s talk about getting you the same success,” instead of, “Others have had trouble because of x, y, and z. Have you experienced the same, and would you like to talk about fixing it?”

When in doubt, ask the experts. Schedule time for a free marketing consultation by clicking the link below.

more insights