Dear Santa,

I’ve been good this year. Really I have. So, with that in mind, I’d like to ask for a few things this Christmas season – for the most part, these really aren’t just for me; they’re for everyone! So, in addition to a Red Ryder carbine-action, two hundred shot Range Model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time, and a new saxophone for my friend Clarence (please deliver to Heaven), here’s what I’m hoping you can bring this Christmas:

A tighter definition of content marketing that becomes widely accepted.

I had a conversation with a veteran advertising pro this year; we were talking about potentially aligning our services. We couldn’t agree on what we meant by content. In his view, everything his shop produced was content, so he didn’t get the new obsession. And, he was right – ad shops do produce content, but they aren’t practicing content marketing… unless, of course, they are. (He wasn’t – his team was a traditional advertising/branding agency. Nothing wrong with that.) The point is that if we don’t focus the definition of content marketing more tightly, then we’re just talking about marketing. If we mean everything, we mean nothing. So here’s what I think it should be (as I’ve written in the past): Content marketing is the creation of journalistic content designed to help or inform the audience. Who’s with me? Santa?

Content marketing that focuses on helping rather than selling.

Jay Baer’s Youtility concept is very powerful because it simplifies what the point of all this content should be. It should be outward-focused, rather than inward-focused. It should be marketing that people share because they want their friends and colleagues to know about it. Let’s see more organizations turn away from selling-selling-selling, and focus on giving away their thinking. Companies need to make this philosophical pivot in order to do so. I’m hoping they do, and I’m hoping the Big Elf backs me up on this one.

Google to keep the focus on rewarding great content.

We entered into a era of content a couple years ago, but Google has legitimized it with its various algorithm updates that reward high value content. Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird have helped to change the game. Now, the goal is to write for human beings rather than spiders – and, yes, it’s remarkable that they’re using science to make marketing more human. Please keep pushing in this direction, Google – it’s better for everybody (except black hat SEO firms).

A client with big vision and a reasonable budget.

I know we could do great things together. Make it happen, St. Nick!