Brand Journalism: Cisco’s Innovative Approach to Online Content Marketing

Comments: 3


  • As a 2011 graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism who now works in marketing, I thoroughly enjoyed this piece. Many of my friends/colleagues who graduated with journalism degrees have had a much easier time finding paid work/jobs/careers developing marketing, PR other other promotional content. I think this trend benefits the marketing industry as it holds content production up to a higher standard, but it can also blur the line between unbiased journalism and promotional advertisements. Does anybody else have any thoughts on this?

  • Danielle:

    I work with Karen Snell (featured in this article) at Cisco and this is definitely an FAQ on the topic of brand journalism, i.e. (“unbiased journalism v. promotional”). We’re not trying to promote a particular point of view in our content. We’re trying to drive engagement. Sure, we cover the topics that we care about, but so do other news outlets (see: Sports Illustrated, Vogue, Popular Science, Network World, etc., etc.).

    We are VERY careful to not overly edit or manage our journalists’ copy (see a list of our contributors here: http://newsroom.cisco.com/take-share-engage). Other than the broad technology and innovation topics we ask them to cover, the only “rules” we ask our contributors to follow are 1) don’t hurt Cisco; and 2) don’t help a competitor.

    We’ll see where all this goes, but we’re excited to be at the forefront of this discussion and we’re proud of the content we are producing.

    Thanks for your interest.

    • Thanks John for chiming in. Hi Danielle!

      I hear you on the concern for blurring the lines…in fact I read many an article and books regarding this exact issue in J school at BU. What I always tell people who are a bit skeptical about our approach…come, read, and see for yourself. These pieces from the journalists we are working with are solid stories, strong reporting and relevant to the industry. We come at this from a thought leadership perspective with the intent of providing information that is engaging and of use to our audience.
      Thank you Danielle for comment!!

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