#14 Content Has 4 Goals (And They’re Not What You Think)

You’ve probably heard that a goal with content marketing is building trust. Today, we question that goal.

Tommy Walker, who previously led global content marketing at Quickbooks and was the first marketing hire at Shopify Plus, makes the case that you can’t measure “building trust” — and therefore, it’s not a goal.

We also discussed:

  • Leveraging the same topic across an entire year
  • Using multiple content formats to make your message heard
  • The importance of creating shareable content
  • How to bring your metrics into context and extract meaningful insights 

If you’re managing content within a company or if you’re a business owner who’s learning the purpose of content marketing, I think you’ll enjoy listening to two longtime in-house content marketers chatting about what works and doesn’t work in the space.

Show Notes

1:40 - How do you know whether you’re building trust with your audience?

5:16 - The way people consume media and the effect it has on content formats.

7:54 - Tracking success and metrics among different forms of content.

10:32 - People tend to follow common patterns while reading written content.

14:46 - Getting executive buy-in for content marketing. 

17:42 - Repurposing content without sounding repetitive.

19:44 - Tommy’s 4 content marketing goals.

26:31 - Strategies to getting your content shared. 

31:24 - What makes Mary Meeker’s annual internet trends report so successful? 

35:25 - Confirmation bias in content marketing, news and media.

43:38 - Understanding how visitors are interacting with your content.

49:52 - Reporting metrics in a way that aligns with your story.


99% Invisible  (6:42)

Airtable (11:41)

Chartbeart research (22:03)

Orbit Media by Andy Crestodina (25:41)

Blogging Statistics (25:49)

Content marketing goals (30:52)

Mary Meeker - Meeker Report (30:54)

Mailchimp (36:49)

Unbounce (36:55)

Quickbooks (38:35)

Adobe Analytics (44:01)

Chartbeat (44:08)

Tommy’s site: Tommy Is My Name

Growth Machine Blog

Find us on Twitter:

Tommy: @tommyismyname

Amanda: @amandanat

Growth Machine: @growthmachine__

Amanda Natividad

Amanda is the Head of Marketing for Growth Machine.