Robert Rose and the Art & Science of Marketing

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Julia McCoy

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Robert Rose and the Art & Science of Marketing

It’s that time again. 💡

The Content HackerTM Spotlight is back, and it’s focused on… *drumroll*

Robert Rose!

Robert is an industry pioneer & veteran with more than 20 years behind him in marketing. He was doing content strategy before it was cool – he helped launch the web strategies of some major companies back in the ‘90s, when digital marketing was in its infancy.

Robert is well-known as Chief Strategy Advisor for the Content Marketing Institute. He’s also the CEO and founder of The Content Advisory (TCA), an educating and consulting group that has worked with hundreds of companies, including 15 of the Fortune 500. Along with his self-described role as “Chief Troublemaker” for TCA, he’s also the best-selling author of three books (one he co-wrote with Joe Pulizzi in 2017 is a marketing standard). Robert is a globally-renowned keynote speaker, an educator, and a strategist who emphasizes the art + science balancing-act of marketing.

Without further ado, let’s get into our Q&A with Robert. He’s got more than a few golden nuggets to inspire your marketing.

Robert Rose

Content Hacker Spotlight Interview: with Robert Rose

1. When did you get started in marketing, and why?

A: I got started in 1995. I was working in television (Showtime Networks) and was a writer and musician in Hollywood. After a particularly bad experience in developing a TV Show, I decided that I wanted to do something else. As it turned out, Showtime was hiring for Marketing Coordinators, and I joined that company.

2. What’s your favorite part of what you do today?

A: My favorite part of my job today is to help people evolve their company’s marketing into a truly strategic, and value-focused media organization. I love rolling up my sleeves and getting to work with so many different kinds of companies, and learn what it is they do.

3. What’s one of the biggest challenges you have overcome in your work as a marketer?

A: That the balance between the art and science of marketing is never fully equalized. You are always straddling the teeter-totter and working back toward one or the other. The day that I acknowledged that it will never be perfectly balanced, but that my job was truly to work toward that balance, I understood what the role of a marketer really is.

Robert Rose marketing balance

4. How has the industry landscape changed since you started?

A: Well, in a word: digital. When I began in marketing, we were still doing 5-year marketing plans, where we plotted out campaigns, and how they would be fed by print, television, FAX (yes, really), and direct marketing mail (e.g. snail mail). I can remember being forward-leaning when I gave all my bosses CD-ROMS that contained all the sales and marketing pitches they might need at various conferences. They thought I was a genius. I’ve had a ringside seat from the very beginnings of digital through today – and have watched it evolve from the very beginning.

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5. What does the future of marketing look like to you?

A: It looks personal, and integrated into the media and content we consume every day. Marketing itself never changes – it’s always been (and will continue to be) based on the delivery of valuable experience to a consumer. One of those experiences is the product or service we put into the marketplace. So, the future of marketing lies in our ability as businesses to continue to explore how we can best deliver value to our consumers – in the most personal (not necessarily personalized) way as possible.

Robert Rose the future of marketing

6. What key traits or skills does it take to be a marketing leader?

A: Today it’s about wisdom. Knowledge and facts are a commodity that is a search or click away. Artificial Intelligence will begin to be applied against repetitive and pattern-based tasks. The one thing that can’t be replaced by AI is the wisdom to be able to synthesize facts, figures, experiences, and emotions together into something that people care about. Today’s marketing leader is wise, and can pull disparate pieces of information together and create NEW things that both foster the art, as well as the algorithmic, aspects of marketing strategy.

Robert Rose marketing leader

7. What are some of your favorite tools or hacks for marketers?

A: My favorite tidbits/hacks for marketing come from folks like Andy Crestodina and his company’s blog at Orbit Media. It’s just chock full of wonderful advice. Evernote is probably the one tool that I can’t live without.

8. Do you have any daily habits, hobbies, or rituals you couldn’t survive without?

A: I journal every day, and I write every day. Two very different things. I journal every morning to get the cobwebs out of my head. And I write at the end of every day to get the ideas that have come in, out and expressed.

9. Coffee or tea?

A: Coffee. Full stop.

10. What are some great blogs we should be reading or people we should be following on social media?

A: Andy Crestodina, Jay Baer, Ann Handley, Rita Gunther McGrath, Clayton Christensen, Content Marketing Institute, Contently’s Content Strategist Blog, The Harvard Business Review

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More Content Hacking with Robert Rose This Way

Thanks, Robert, for chatting with us!

Here are the places you’ll find Robert on the web and social media so you can hit all of those ‘follow’ buttons:

Check out our other Spotlights for more Q&A sessions with industry experts like Joe Pulizzi, Josh Steimle, and more.

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