The rise of digital content has generally been seen as a threat to print media by the journalism community and its readers, but it appears the tides are turning. A string of recent events suggests the online content world may in fact bring new vitality to the traditional reporting landscape rather than make it irrelevant. For brand marketers, this signals that high-quality reporting is here to stay, and companies must use their websites to establish themselves in brand journalism as reliable sources of industry information.
The post-digital rise of journalism?
Some of the evidence pointing to this conclusion: Tech industry leaders (eBay’s founder Pierre M. Omidyar, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Google’s chief legal officer David Drummond to name a few) have invested in digital news publication sites including The Huffington Post and The Washington Post.
Digital publishing is getting sexy as it matures and tech leaders want a piece of the action.
The New York Times’ David Carr posits that digital culturalists have taken a keen interest in the potential of high-quality news content. Digital publishing is getting sexy as it matures and tech leaders want a piece of the action. In fact, investor Omidyar told Carr that technologists have an innate belief they can make the world better and they want to bring that gilded touch to the journalism landscape, a field that has struggled to sustain readership as annual paper subscriptions give way to instant updates on mobile devices.
Google’s Media Tools tie it all together
In another sign that journalism and digital content can work together, Google recently launched Media Tools. The new media platform brings together resources that will help online publishers craft compelling stories, from lead discovery to interactive publication and social engagement. For instance, it organizes search tools, word processing programs, content analytics reports, mapping tools (for added engagement and context) as well as social sharing channels (G+ and YouTube).
Is content marketing going the way of journalism or the other way around?
Essentially, Google’s Media Tools seems to make it easier for online content creators to produce and publish highly credible stories on the ‘net. This begs the question: Is content marketing going the way of journalism or the other way around? Brafton recently covered a Google Webmaster Help Channel video in which Matt Cutts suggested they’re one in the same, or they should be, if publishers want their stories to display in search results. Cutts said top-ranking content will contain the caliber of writing, information and entertainment that readers would expect to find in magazines, books and newspapers.
Over time, the gap between content marketing and journalism appears to be closing. Digital marketers should stay one step ahead of this curve, creating insightful and engaging content, to ensure their brands are recognized as industry authorities in order to become go-to resources on the web.