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Transforming content into a profit center

Content marketing is too often seen as a cost. But there are many examples where brands are actually directly making money.

Why do we do content? There are many answers to this question. At its root, the reason is to create and build an audience for your brand. To leverage the power trust can have in the minds of your clients (and potential clients).

Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose, from the Content Marketing Institute, have for long talked about three reasons for content marketing: “subscribe, win and grow” (in Rose’s words), and “sales, savings and sunshine” (in Pulizzi’s words).

Lately, a fourth reason has emerged: making money from content. I touched on the subject a couple weeks ago with PepsiCo’s new model, focusing on creating revenue from their content initiatives.

There are many other examples where brands generate revenue directly from their content:

  • Red Bull: The Red Bulletin, its for-paying-subscribers magazine;
  • Salesforce: Dreamforce, its highly popular sales conference;
  • Cuisine Solutions: Sous-Vide, a subscriber-only cooking magazine;
  • Johnson & Johnson: BabyCenter.com is a completely separate division;
  • LEGO: LEGO Movie was created as a for-profit initiative;
  • etc.

Robert Rose and Joe Pulizzi wrote an extensive article on the reasons brands do content marketing. It explains the initial three reasons, but dives deeper into this new 4th reason: making money.

I’m sure this will interest many of you!