If you’ve ever searched for a podcast to help explain what content marketing is and how it would help your business, welcome to the right place.

On this episode of Brand Story, Inc., our own director of marketing, Lily Homstad Cruse, debunks the misconceptions and makes the seemingly overwhelming nature of content marketing somewhat simple and digestible.

Lily has built content marketing strategies and executions for the likes of the Chicago Marathon, Big Ten Network, International Tennis Hall of Fame and the Baseball Hall of Fame. And, she joins us to share the ins and outs of the field you want in one podcast.

Content marketing in action

Just last week (January 24), one of my favorite – and most extreme – examples of content marketing got the spotlight it so richly deserves.  The do-it-yourself media network, tastytrade, was acquired by IG for $1 billion. Here’s the hook – tastytrade is actually the content marketing arm – or front door – of tastyworks, the Chicago-based online brokerage.  It’s a non-media company living the media company and content marketing mindset to the Nth degree. You can listen to CEO, Kristi Ross, on our Brand Story, Inc. podcast from the summer of 2020 on how they built it, why it works and how critical it is to their business model. 

Not everyone has the all-in mindset or investment dollars tastyworks committed. And that’s OK. Lily puts your mind at ease in this episode about how to think about content marketing, demystifying the practice, simplifying the lingo and sharing a framework for you and your colleagues to either take the plunge or make the move to up your game.


On this episode:

  • Defining content marketing – what it is, how it works and what’s involved to get started.
  • The ROI – what level of investment it takes, the ROI proposition and the variables involved (note: it’s a long-game approach).
  • I role play the CEO of a financial services firm interested in getting in the content marketing game. Lily walks you step-by-step on the process, approach and potential outcomes of a content marketing strategy and execution.
  • How you are a content-generating machine but may not even know it.
  • How to go from sourcing content to engaging customer prospects.
  • Figuring out what platforms and mediums (video, podcast, blog posts, etc.) to use for your business.
  • Case studies, case studies, and more case studies, including Lily’s own personal experience as a user and customer.
  • The next gen of content marketing – building community through content.
  • Straight talk on investment levels, expectations and resources.
  • The first two books to buy for your content marketing starter kit.


This is the perfect “listen to this” podcast for the content newbie or executive team considering this tactic. Let us know what you think, what questions you have that we missed and, as always, candid feedback on likes and dislikes. Enjoy!

You can follow me, Jay Sharman, on Twitter or ping me on LinkedIn.  Lily Homstad can be followed on Twitter here or connected with on LinkedIn here.

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