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Great Reads: Sponsored, Native and Content Marketing

Written by Jillean Kearney on March 04, 2013

The Huffington Post Impact X

Changing up the Sponsored Content Biz

The Huffington Post got in the sponsored content business way back in 2010 and now the blog network is putting its own twist on the digital trend.

Instead of creating original content for brands, its social marketing team is curating HuffPo articles related to a topic relevant to the brand and presenting them in a branded environment. For example, a page sponsored by Cisco which features content about the intersection of humanity and technology contains articles about how Facebook saved someone's life and how film can change the world.

Find out more over at Digiday.

Also in sponsored content news is a new ad unit the sponsored share. EMedia's Rob O'Regan shared a blog post from TheAtlantic.com via the handy tweet button. After the tweet was posted an ad unit popped up that said, "Thank you for sharing. Sponsored content presented by The Capital Grille." The actual post wasn't sponsored but the share was. Regan poses a question at the end of his own post, "Has anyone else seen this type of sponsorship?"

Figuring out Native Advertising

Ever since The Atlantic came under fire for its Scientology-sponsored content debacle, it has been used as a case study in nearly every article about native advertising. PaidContent's Jeff John Roberts found out that native advertising is a lot harder to pull off for news brands.

Kimberly Lau, The Atlantic's VP and General Manager, spoke at an industry event last week and said, "It goes back to the difference between entertainment and journalism. There’s a higher bar for a brand like The Atlantic."

Read on at paidContent.

While some publications are trying to find their groove when it comes to sponsored content, others are still trying to reconcile mixing editorial with advertising. Last week Buzzfeed's editor-in-chief Ben Smith and blogger Andrew Sullivan faced off about the merits of native advertising during a panel discussion last week.

Smith, obviously a champion of the cause, was countered by Sullivan who argued that, "if journalism is not understood to be separate from advertising, then it has lost something incredibly important in a democratic society."

Adweek has the fully story about why the native advertising argument is far from over.

Don't Forget About Content Marketing

With all the buzz about native advertising these days, it's easy to forget that brands don't always need to rely on online publications to create and distribute original content.

After working in the publishing industry for 13 years, Joe Pulizzi now spends his days teaching brands how to be publishers. He wrote 7 Ways to Dominate Your Media Competitor Through Content Marketing for the Content Marketing Institute about all of the tips and tricks that publishers don't want brands to know.

Pulizzi's second tip "cherry-picking" is my personal favorite. Big companies like GE and Avaya have hired journalists to fill they're marketing positions. He states, "This is now the rule and not the exception. Why shouldn’t you do the same?"

Click here for the other six tips.


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