Content Marketing StrategyRyan's Rants

4 Content Marketing Buzzwords That Need to Die

By December 12, 2013 One Comment

Content marketing is all about the creation and curation of valuable content. Everything we write is designed to be relevant, insightful and helpful – so why are there so many meaningless content marketing buzzwords floating around the content marketing ether? For people who make a living creating concise, interesting writing, we content marketers love spouting clichéd jargon – so here are our top 4 content marketing buzzwords that really, really need to roll over and die.


[googlefont font=”Oswald” size=”30px”]4. Corporate Storytelling[/googlefont]

Corporate Storytelling

‘…and shareholder profits fell by 300%. The End.’

Good writing tells a story. It’s ‘Copywriting 101’, but we can all benefit from appraising our content on a regular basis, and assessing our ability as storytellers. Unfortunately, ‘Corporate Storytelling’ is an entirely meaningless content marketing buzzword, and one that breaks several golden rules of Copywriting – by using unnecessary words to explain… nothing. Storytelling is storytelling, and compelling content is compelling regardless of where it originated. If you need to qualify your storytelling ability by adding a prefix to your job title, you’re simply branding yourself a failed storyteller. A huge number of businesses have mastered the art of creating engaging stories, writing copy that is just as compelling as copy from any other field. There’s no reason you can’t ditch this content marketing buzzword, and do the same.

[googlefont font=”Oswald” size=”30px”]3. Thought-Leadership[/googlefont]

Long-gone are the days of inventors, innovators and even ‘Marketing Directors’. All of these titles have been usurped by a piece of hackneyed corporate jargon, presumably birthed in the same terrifying office cubicle as ‘blue sky thinking’. Anyone claiming to be a ‘thought leader’ is attempting to paint themselves as a lateral-thinker, and someone who isn’t afraid to challenge the status quote. Unfortunately though, regurgitating an increasingly meaningless cliché to illustrate your innovative potential is not only incredible arrogant, but also incredibly ironic. Good ideas speak for themselves, so it’s time to ditch the pseudo-title.

[googlefont font=”Oswald” size=”30px”]2. Evangelist[/googlefont]

Content marketing buzzword Outbound Marketer

Pictured: Outbound Marketer

It’s good to be passionate – great in fact – but claiming to be an evangelist of ‘inbound marketing’, ‘compelling content’ or even ‘LinkedIn’ is a bit far for my liking. Evangelism is all about converting someone to your cause, persuading them of the merits of your position – being pushy in fact, and berating your target until they relent. Which, actually, sounds a lot like old school outbound marketing: pushing people to a concept for your benefit, instead of pulling them for theirs. As a result, ‘inbound marketing evangelism’ is a concept ripe with irony, and a content marketing buzzword which needs to be abandoned yesterday.

[googlefont font=”Oswald” size=”30px”]1. Inbound Marketing[/googlefont]

Speaking of inbound marketing, the term ‘inbound’ is itself hideously overused. I understand why brands and businesses label themselves as ‘inbound marketers’ – it allows them to capitalize on the phenomenal success of HubSpot, and many marketers believe it differentiates themselves from other marketing agencies. Unfortunately though, that latter point simply isn’t true anymore, and ‘inbound’ agencies of all sizes abound, many without any tangible connection to HubSpot. Sadly, I don’t believe the term ‘Inbound’ is going anywhere fast, as I explain in our last blog post,  ‘What’s the Difference Between ‘Inbound Marketing and Content Marketing?’.

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What are you most hated content marketing buzzwords? Are you an inbound marketing evangelist, or a corporate storytelling thought-leader? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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Author Ryan

I help SaaS companies grow with content marketing. I also drink Scotch. Sometimes together. CMO & co-founder, Cobloom.

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