Why I Bet My Career On Content Marketing

Michael Brenner on Sep 22, 2014 in Content Marketing

Last week I was honored to kick off the NewsCred Content Marketing Summit.

So I decided to change up my standard Content Marketing Imperative talk. And explain a little more about why I bet my career on content marketing.

I believe content marketing is no longer a question, but an imperative for every brand – large and small, across every industry, in B2B and for consumer brands as well.

The reason is because all of us are now firmly in control of our content experiences. We opt-in to the content we want to watch, read, share and binge on. We opt out of the ads we don’t want and will not accept interruptions to the content experiences we want to consume or share.

The effectiveness of traditional promotional marketing is on the decline in every channel and across every format. We receive 5,000 marketing messages a day. We ignore 99.9% of banner on the websites we visit. We ignore more than 90% of the emails we receive. We skip commercials, throw away mail we don’t want and screen calls from unknown telephone numbers.

In today’s always-on, hyper-connected world, the only option for brands to connect with their audiences is to create, publish and share stories people love.

While social media is barely 12 years old, the impact has been enormous. We are all connected. The “digital, social mobile” world we all talk about – those are just the pipes. It’s the stories that flow across this infrastructure that drive what we do.

Stories have been around as long as man has walked the earth.

Stories helped us survive by conveying important pieces of information that were vital for our survival. But the stories that succeeded were the ones that connected to us through emotion.

The first ads pushed a simple message: buy our stuff. Buy our stuff because other people do. Buy our stuff because people you respect do.

It took decades (and is still the exception) for advertisers to tell stories. The great ads touch our hearts and inspire our minds through emotion.

Seth Godin said that “content marketing is all the marketing that’s left.” And that was way back in 2008!

Peter Drucker said “The aim of marketing is to get and keep customers.” And yet we primarily use tactics that drive potential new customers away.

We are seeing a shift away from paid promotion, through earned (social) media and into owned media. Branded content hubs. Where the brand becomes the platform for storytelling. But takes the brand out of the story. Makes the customers the hero.

Even the largest advertisers are shifting a significant amount of their spend from paid ads to owned content hubs.

We talk a lot about brands telling stories and becoming publishers. But Red Bull is one company leading the way. Their CEO’s advice: “Brands need to take the phrase ‘acting like a publisher’ literally.”

So listen to the video and tell me what you think!? And if you are interested in hearing Tim Washer’s presentation, here it is. (Thanks to Rachel Macik for the idea.)

Michael Brenner
Michael Brenner
Michael Brenner is a globally-recognized keynote speaker, author of The Content Formula and the CEO of Marketing Insider Group. He has worked in leadership positions in sales and marketing for global brands like SAP and Nielsen, as well as for thriving startups. Today, Michael shares his passion on leadership and marketing strategies that deliver customer value and business impact. He is recognized by the Huffington Post as a Top Business Keynote Speaker and a top CMO influencer by Forbes. Please follow him on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook and Subscribe here for regular updates.
Showing 9 comments
  • Rachel Macik

    Love it. So much in fact, I wanted to listen to the next presentation you mentioned. If others want to do the same, it’s here https://blog.newscred.com/article/follow-the-fear-tim-washer-on-how-to-use-humor-in-content-marketing/65d5998bdd616e255e6f44b2bfea0e2e and is also fantastic 🙂 Storytelling is the heart of all consumable messages. So hard in the technology space – but completely doable!

    • Michael Brenner

      Thanks so much Rachel! And really appreciate you linking to Tim’s video as well. I probably should add it to the post itself in case more people want to see it and don’t scroll down to the comments.

  • Tony Zambito


    I am betting on content marketing – and more importantly – I am betting on Michael Brenner to lead the way. Keep up the good work and leadership!


    • Michael Brenner

      Thanks so much Tony! Your support really means a lot to me and you totally made my day.

  • Loz James

    This is great Michael

    I’d like to invite you to be my guest on the Content Champion podcast to talk about the content marketing imperative.

    What do you say?



    • Michael Brenner

      Thanks so much Loz. I would be honored. Please send me an email michael.brenner at newscred.com

  • Douglas Burdett

    I’d say you made a good bet! Your move to NewsCred and this talk are such an inspiration (and affirmation) – thanks for sharing! (Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to take on the world.)

    • Michael Brenner

      Thanks so much Doug! I really appreciate the support and encouragement and wish you continued success as well.

  • Mary Jane Kinkade

    Great video/presentation! Thank you!