A midmorning panel at the Latin Content Marketing Forum included two journalists and a marketer (Ford) who came together to talk about the role of the journalists in the age of content marketing. Moderated by NAMIC’s President & CEO Nicole Turner-Lee, the panel featured Fusion’s Managing Editor and Features Editor Nuria Net, Alberto Collazo, Ford Communications, and Emilio Sanchez, President and Editor in Chief of VOXXI.
Both journalists, Net and Sánchez agreed on the changes going on in the market and how reporters and editors can coexist with brand marketing… As long as it is creative, and creates an actually conversation with their audience.
“Five years ago I would have been totally against [content marketing,]” said Net, one of the first hires and pioneers of Fusion, the ABC News/Univision network scheduled to launch later this year. “But now, you have websites like BuzzFeed, which are using content marketing in very smart ways and realize everybody wins. The brands win, media companies win, and consumers win, because it is valuable information.”
Alberto Collazo, responsible for Hispanic communications in the U.S., chimed in to talk about the importance of journalists and bloggers for a brand like Ford, which strives to connect with U.S. Latinos. It is difficult, he acknowledges, because they have to walk a fine line but in the end it’s all about the content.
Content marketing also calls for a radical change in which editors view content, and do away with the conventional ways of doing things in the past. Sanchez, a former director of news for EFE, recalled the case of a young VOXXI reporter, who said wanted to voice his opinion in stories and didn’t really know what the AP Stylebook was or why he even needed to know that.
Overall, though, panelists agreed that the times are changing and journalists must adapt and in some cases work alongside a brand to produce compelling content, which in turn will be beneficial for such a brand.
“There is no longer shame in going to the dark side,” said Net. “We have now more resources and can do a very good job.” But, she had a piece of advice for marketers: “We are journalists, we are here to inform not to sell. Don’t make me write a review of your product and pay me for it.”