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B2B Marketing Q&A: Joe Pulizzi on Content Differentiation, Removing Marketing Automation and More

In B2B Marketing: Tomorrow’s Best Practices Today, we feature expert interviews about the state of B2B Marketing and what the future holds. In this post, I’m thrilled to interview Joe Pulizzi. In January 2019, Joe ended a 12 month sabbatical. Welcome back, Joe!

Tell us a bit about yourself?

Most people know me as the founder of Content Marketing Institute and Content Marketing World.

Content, Inc. - a book by Joe Pulizzi

I’ve written or co-written five content marketing books. Probably best known for Content Inc. or Epic Content Marketing. I also co-founded a non-profit that funds speech therapy for autistic children called Orange Effect Foundation. Currently, I go by the title “writer.”

Tell us about your background in B2B marketing?

I grew up in B2B Marketing, specifically the media side. Started at a large B2B media company where we produced custom magazines and newsletters for large B2B corporations.

Then, of course, CMI is a B2B media company, and our readers/subscribers were mostly B2B marketers, so I’ve got a decent handle on the subject.

What’s a best practice that B2B marketers should move on from?

Having a presence on every social media channel. That’s so 2008. I say pick one and be amazing at it.

Tell us a best-practice-of-tomorrow that B2B marketers should be doing today?

The best practice for tomorrow is the best practice for the past 100 years.

Find a content area of differentiation that you can be truly great at. Distribute your content (aka tell your story) through one main channel (newsletter, blog, podcast) through one main content type (text, audio, video) and release it consistently over a long period of time.

That is what EVERY great media company has done. Just do that.

You’re forced to remove one element of your martech stack. What would it be and why?

Marketing Automation.

While I LOVE it, most companies use it wrong. Generally, just the email and spammy part. Talk to any marketing automation company. If their clients use 10% of the feature set, they’d be shocked.

How will B2B marketing be different in 2020?

It won’t.

Seriously, you’ll see a few dents here and there, but long term, we are on a collision course for marketing and media companies transforming into the exact same business model.

It’s happened in B2C, but lagging in B2B. But just a matter of time. In 10 or so years, the majority of B2B media companies will be run by a product and service company or vice versa.

Killing Marketing - a book by Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose

Note: Joe, along with co-author Robert Rose, cover more on this topic in their book “Killing Marketing: How Innovative Businesses Are Turning Marketing Cost Into Profit.”

I read it over the holidays and highly recommend it.

A new graduate takes her first job in B2B marketing. What’s the first thing she should do?

Learn how to build an audience of subscribers.

What’s one B2C marketing tactic that B2B marketers should steal?

Permission to be creative.

Thanks so much, Joe! To our readers: feel free to follow Joe on Twitter and visit his website.


Read more interviews

Listening to customers, the human element in Marketing and more with: Todd Wilms.

Influencer marketing, chatbots and more with: Neal Schaffer.

The sales funnel, customer journey mapping and more with: Christine Crandell.

Related Posts
B2B Marketing Q&A: Joe Pulizzi on Content Differentiation, Removing Marketing Automation and More ( 11 Feb 2019 )
B2B Marketing Q&A: Christine Crandell on the Sales Funnel, Customer Journey Mapping and More ( 19 Feb 2019 )
B2B Marketing Q&A: Neal Schaffer on Influencer Marketing, Chatbots and More ( 25 Feb 2019 )
B2B Marketing Q&A: Todd Wilms on Listening to Customers, the Human Element in Marketing and More ( 11 Mar 2019 )
Artificial Intelligence for Everyday B2B Marketers ( 26 Mar 2019 )
Written by Dennis Shiao
Dennis Shiao
Dennis is an independent marketing consultant who works with brands on content marketing, product marketing and social media marketing. Dennis curates an email newsletter called Content Corner and publishes marketing-related content on Medium. You can find Dennis on Twitter, @dshiao.

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