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Content Marketing vs. Social Media Marketing: What’s the Difference?

Difference,Content Marketing,Social Media Marketing

I still come across people who are totally unfamiliar with the term “content marketing.” And as I begin to explain it, they often respond, “Oh, brands publishing content? You mean social media marketing.” Step by step Difference,Content Marketing,Social Media Marketing

Indeed, content marketing heavily involves social media. And, of course, in ssocial media, marketers use content to get their messages across. But although there is plenty of overlap between content marketing and social media marketing, they are actually two distinct entities, with different focal points, goals, and processes. To help clear the confusion, let’s look at the major ways in which they differ:

Center of gravity

In social media marketing, the center of gravity — the focus of the marketing activity — is located within the social networks themselves. When marketers operate social media campaigns, they are operating inside of Facebook, inside of Twitter, inside of Google+, etc. As they produce content, they place it inside of these networks.

 

In contrast, the center of gravity for content marketing is a brand website — whether it be a branded URL like AmericanExpress.com or a microsite for a brand’s specific product, like Amex’s Open Forum. Social networks are vital to the success of content marketing efforts, but here, Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ are used primarily as a distributor of links back to the content on the brand’s website — not as containers of the content itself.

Types of content

In social media marketing, content is built to fit the context of the chosen social platform: short messages in the 140 characters range for Twitter; contests, quizzes, and games for Facebook, etc. Here, brands model their behavior after that of the individuals using the social networks.

On the other hand, in content marketing, the context of websites permits much longer forms of content. Brands can publish blog posts, videos, infographics, and eBooks, just to name a few formats. Here, brands model their behavior after that of media publishers.

Objectives

While both social media marketing and content marketing can be used for a multitude of purposes, social media marketing generally tends to focus on two main objectives. First, it is used for brand awareness — generating activity and discussion around the brand. Secondly, it is used for customer retention/ satisfaction — brands can use social channels as an open forum for direct dialogues with customers, often around issues or questions that consumers have.

In contrast, content marketing’s website-based center of gravity enables it to focus more on demand generation. As quality content brings prospects to a brand’s site, brands can develop a relationship with the prospects and nurture them towards a lead conversion or purchase.

Evolution of online marketing

While I don’t know the ratio of brands that practice social media marketing compared to those that practice content marketing, I’d imagine it has to be somewhere around one thousand to one. Social media marketing is top-of-mind for most every marketing department, while content marketing is a (relatively) new term, and a new practice for many.

Yet, I think of the two strategies less as two isolated options and more as interrelated parts of marketing’s ongoing evolution. The internet has unleashed a revolutionary ability for every brand to communicate directly with its customers — without the need for a media industry intermediary.

Social media marketing is the natural first step in this process: Access to users is direct (users spend tons of time on social networks), and content is generally formatted into shorter chunks, which makes the publishing process relatively easy.

But as brands become more familiar with their new role as publisher, the natural progression will be to move toward content marketing. Yes, the bar here is higher: In content marketing, brands must produce longer-form, higher-quality content and build audiences on their own site — they must become true media publishers. But the rewards and results are, arguably, more powerful. Brands can engage more deeply with their customers through content marketing efforts. And by driving consumers to its own website, the brand has a greater opportunity to gain leads and move them down the conversion funnel.

As we all pioneer this new strategy of content marketing, a shared definition of what we do relative to approaches like social media marketing is invaluable. So now your turn: In the comments, feel free to discuss your thoughts. Is this a definition you would use to distinguish the two disciplines? What’s missing?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you CMI


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Simple Steps to Combat Spam

Spam picture

Implementing a best practice policy regarding email account usage can be an effective tool for minimizing the amount of spam that end users receive. While having such a policy should not be considered a complete solution, it can serve as a significant line of defense against unwanted email.

The best way to have an immediate impact on the amount of spam your company is receiving is to run a consolidated email filtering solution at your email gateway. This will not only protect your business from spam, but also the threats posed by email-borne viruses and worms. RCS Technology Solutions email security solutions check all email traffic passing through your email server, providing an extra layer of protection against mass-mailing worms and viruses at the gateway.

To help combat spam, email users should follow these recommendations:

  • Never make a purchase from an unsolicited email
    If spamming weren’t economically viable, it would be obsolete. Not only can an email user fall prey to a potentially fraudulent sales scheme, but his or her email address can also be added to the numerous email lists that are sold within the spamming community, further compounding the number of junk emails received.
  • If you do not know the sender of an unsolicited email message, delete it
    While most spam is usually just annoying text, a spam email message could actually contain a virus and/or other exploit that could damage the computers of all who open it.
  • Never respond to any spam messages or click on any links in the message
    Replying to any spam message, even to “unsubscribe” or be “removed” from the email list only confirms to the spammer that you are a valid recipient and a perfect target for future spamming.
  • Avoid using the preview functionality of your email client software
    Many spammers use advertising techniques that can track when a message is viewed, even if you don’t click on the message or reply. Using the preview functionality essentially opens an email and tells spammers you are a valid recipient, which can result in even more spam.
  • When sending email messages to a large number of recipients, use the blind copy (BCC) field to conceal their email addresses
    Sending email where all recipient addresses are “exposed” in the “To” field makes it vulnerable to harvesting by a spammer’s traps.
  • Think carefully before you provide your email address on websites, newsgroup lists or other online public forum
    Many spammers utilize “web bots” that automatically surf the Internet to harvest email addresses from public information and forums.
  • Never give your primary email address to anyone or any site you don’t trust
    Share it only with your close friends and business colleagues.
  • Have and use one or two secondary email addresses
    If you need to fill out web registration forms, or surveys at sites from which you don’t want to receive further information, consider using secondary addresses to protect primary email accounts from spam abuse. Also, always look for a box that solicits future information/offers, and be sure to select or deselect as appropriate.

Conscientious end users who follow these suggestions will ultimately play a significant role in reducing the amount of spam that enters their organization’s communications system, especially when automated spam-filtering supplements their efforts


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Happy New Year

Our Company would like to wish you and your family a happy and healthy New Year! We sincerely hope you enjoyed this holiday season, and we look forward to serving you this year.


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