In 1895, John Deere, the agricultural machinery company, debuted a slight publication called The Furrow targeted at farmers and ranchers. Back then, The Furrow was a simple newsletter containing pen-and ink-drawings, articles about farming techniques, ads for new plows, and a section tailored for women readers that featured products like cream separators. Fast-forward 118 years to today: The Furrow is still published – albeit in glossy form, complete with its own website, Facebook page, and Twitter feed. It has circulation of 1.5 million.
The Furrow is one of the earliest examples of content marketing, an approach that involves creating, distributing, and exchanging information to attract, engage, and retain a clearly defined audience, with the ultimate goal of driving sales. According to a recent survey by the Content Marketing Institute (CMI), 91% of North American B2B marketers use content marketing as part of their current marketing strategy.
I’ve sat through the first two two sessions at the MIT Sloan CIO Symposium, expecting to hear all about the wonderful opportunities doing digital business.
Was I wrong! The sessions, entitled 1) “Opportunities in the Digital Business World” and 2) “What every CIO should Know about the Future impact of Digital Business,” focused on security, risk, privacy and how to manage infinite oceans of data were the dominant topic. We heard words like “headaches” and “hacker.”
Certainly, no one has corned the market for a playbook that explains how CIOs deal with vast amounts of data, all that threatens it and how to exploit it.
This week, two conferences on related topics are scheduled for successive days at MIT—the annual MIT Sloan CIO Symposium today and the annual meeting of the MIT Center for Digital Business Thursday. Attendees at both events will include executives responsible for their organizations’ information services.
These leaders have very important jobs these days. Information management is no longer an obscure, technical department in companies. The success of firms can well hinge on how information managers do their jobs.
Every 1.2 years, the volume of business data worldwide doubles. In the course of the two days that the conferences are being held—actually any two days this year—businesses around the world will produce more data than all of the world’s businesses produced in all of history before 2003.