Look where corporate budgets have been shifting, and it’s easy to see that “content marketing” is the new marketing, advertising, and PR. And, surprisingly, it feels like a newsroom operation. A closer look reveals that content marketers and journalists have a lot in common.

  • They produce stories about people and issues that are relevant, authentic, and engaging to readers.
  • They spend a lot of time researching facts, getting opinions, and tracking industry trends.
  • They write about lifestyles, finance, politics, anything that helps readers understand their world.
  • They publish their work on multiple channels.
  • They eagerly wait for the next piece of news to break so they can report it.
  • They rarely put their organizations at the center of their stories.

Both types of professional have the same effective writing styles:

  • Crisp, compelling headlines
  • Punchy lead-ins
  • Short, single-thought paragraphs
  • Uncomplicated prose
  • Factual, critical
  • Engaging, entertaining

With the downturn of the newspaper and magazine industry, many journalists have gone into marketing, giving rise to “brand journalism.” This sounds like an oxymoron. Journalists are wired to reveal truth, not promote brands. Well, the smart brands have found a way to do both.

People buy brands because they trust them. They shun brands that have the slightest hint of fakery. Social media has made it really hard for marketers to fool today’s consumers. The true story will always come out. It’s the content marketer’s job to bring the truth to customers as quickly as possible. But wait, that’s what journalists do. You get my point?

Here are some articles that explore the synergies between journalism and marketing. Worth reading!

How Hiring a Journalist Can Improve Your Content Marketing, Robert McGuire, Content Marketing Institute

Taking a Newsroom Approach to Content Marketing, Jeremy Porter, Journalistics

3 Classic Journalism Techniques That Will Improve Your Content Marketing, Brian Hughes, Entrepreneur Online

How to Build a Newsroom Inside Your Company, Dan Lyons, HubSpot