2015 ANA Marketing Word of the Year: Content Marketing

December 23, 2015

By Bill Duggan

For the second consecutive year, the ANA surveyed our members to identify the marketing word of the year. The ANA staff identified a list of finalists and then asked members to cast their votes to determine the winner. Voting was done online between December 10 and December 17. In total, 297 members participated, and “content marketing” received the most votes. (Yes, that’s two words... we know!)

Here’s what we heard from those who voted for content marketing as the 2015 ANA Marketing Word of the Year:

  • There is so much content generated. We should focus on marketing the content which is relevant to the right target audience in a strategic way.
  • It’s all about content that resonates with the customer.
  • I hear it everywhere — see companies shifting budgets — it’s the content that allows us to super-target consumers. Content marketing is one-to-one marketing on steroids.
  • Content, from a marketing perspective, was always an important tool in a marketer’s toolbox, but it has taken on such an elevated importance lately that it deserves the top spot. It has evolved to a holistic and strategic POV on all materials delivered to consumers in any channel.
  • Content is so important to what we do now. In my B-to-B company that’s still what drives marketing. Content, in the way of thought leadership, is king!
  • Content marketing is endemic across all areas of marketing.
  • Consumer engagement has become the most critical aspect of our marketing efforts. Content, specifically quality content, is colossal to achieving this engagement.

Other top choices in the 2015 Marketing Word of the Year voting were programmatic (which was our 2014 Marketing Word of the Year, transparency (which was also a top vote-getter in 2014), and storytelling.

The selection of content marketing as ANA Word of the Year wasn’t surprising, as we’ve seen lots of interest throughout the year in various ANA discussions and forums on the topic. Members are realizing that ‘content’ provides the means for engagement and ‘marketing’ is required to drive awareness of content — so the resulting combination of ‘content marketing’ is powerful.


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