Brand Journalism is when any organization—B2B company, consumer product company, the military, nonprofits, government agencies, politicians, churches, rock bands, solo entrepreneurs—creates valuable information and shares it with the world.
Brand Journalism is not a product pitch. It is not an advertorial. It is not an egotistical spewing of gobbledygook-laden corporate drivel.
Instead Brand Journalism is the creation of Web content—videos, blog posts, photos, charts, graphs, essays, ebooks, white papers—that deliver value to your marketplace and serve to position your organization as one worthy of doing business with.
I've been talking up this concept for many years now. While some people resist the ideas, I am now seeing more and more who agree with me, so I wanted to do a post to pull my thoughts together and point to some other people discussing brand journalism.
Skill Sets Required
I'm convinced that those with the traditional skills of marketing, public relations, advertising, and copywriting are not the right people to create brand journalism content. Instead you need the skills of a journalist.
The idea of hiring journalists is a new one at companies, but I think it is essential for success.
Here is a two-minute riff on this idea taken from a Q&A I did with Peter Himler after my keynote at Search Engine Strategies New York 2010. Peter writes The Flack and is founder of Flatiron Communications, and served as Chief Media Officer for Edelman Worldwide, following a decade with Burson-Marsteller as head of the agency's U.S. corporate and strategic media team.
Here's a post where I try to "recruit" journalists to these ideas in the hopes that they would consider working for "the man" in corporations. With many mainstream media companies laying off journalists, I think this is an important career option. An open letter to journalists: You have an amazing career opportunity on the Dark Side. Take a look at the comments.
Ashley Slaney is a master's student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University. She asks: Is "Corporate Journalism" the Same as Public Relations?
Albert Maruggi says: David's Brand Journalism idea may result in an actual job position I call the "embedded corporate journalist", a paraphrase from the journalist embedded with military units in the Iraq War.
Companies, nonprofits, and the U.S. military
Here are a few other things to check out:
Armed with Science Brand journalism in the U.S. Military humanizes a huge organization
Imperial Sugar Company Newsroom ISC hired the skills of a print journalist, a television journalist, and a photojournalist.
What do you think of this concept of Brand Journalism?
Image: Shutterstock / Diagon