Northwestern U.’s Content Strategy for Professionals Course Is Underway

I’m at the end of the 2nd week of Northwestern University‘s Content Strategy for Professionals course on Coursera. In all honesty, I’ve had so much going on that I haven’t been spending a whole heck of a lot of time on this course. I’ve been watching the videos, and read a bit of the course’s textbook Medill on Media Management. But that’s about it.

Even so, I can tell that this course is going to be a very valuable resource. Here is the video, with Professor John Lavine introducing the course:

What I really appreciate is that in the first week, it was clearly stated that this MOOC is for professional enrichment, and is not meant to be a substitute for any college class, and definitely isn’t transferable for college credit. I personally feel that this is the case for 90% of MOOCs out there; in spite of the widely published efforts of some who wish to use MOOCs as a substitute for actual degree programs. But I digress 🙂 .

Ok back to the course. If you notice the title, it focuses on content strategy, and not simply content marketing. Almost immediately, there were questions asking about the differences between the two. Well content marketing is creating content with the goal to appeal to your audience in a compelling way so that they turn into (or remain) customers. Content strategy on the other hand applies to the organization as a whole…not just for marketing efforts. For example, efforts like new employee orientation programming, town hall meetings, and public relations efforts are all examples of where you need to create content that reinforces your brand, but does not have the goal to win over customers.

My prediction is that this MOOC will help me better understand the field of integrated marketing communications, an area that was only touched upon in my MBA program. It’s hosted by the Medill School of Journalism, not the Kellogg School of Management. These seems to be the case in most instances (where IMC programs reside in the journalism school/department, not with the business school). It brings up the question what type of career preparation does an MBA in Marketing offer vs. an MS in IMC? What reasons would you have to pick one program over another?

Similar to what I did with my Marketing MOOC, I’ll write a follow-up post at the conclusion of the course. So stay tuned! 😀