Content Marketing Award: Blog: Winner: Cisco Systems

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Blogs are an ideal way for a company to establish itself as an authority on an industry. A corporate website can highlight products, services and the company itself, but the blog is an opportunity to go bigger—to address the challenges and opportunities that extend beyond the marketer. Cisco Systems does just that with its Connected Life Exchange blog, home to well-written columns both by regular and contributing writers. The blog's editorial focus is on how networks and technology are changing the world. One post, for example, features an interview with a manager at a company that provides mobile software to community health workers in rural areas with limited or no access to doctors. Another post includes a video from Cisco's well-produced “Network Effect” documentary-style video series; the video highlights how a cellular service provider in rural Africa set up local offices in donated shipping containers and how an organization helped Latin American microbusinesses solve connectivity problems. All blog posts are easy to share on social channels, and a “Blogs at a glance” box along the right-hand side of each page highlights the most recent, popular and commented on posts. The blog also is part of Cisco's Social Rewards program, which recognizes the people who read and comment the most. With a wealth of strong, nonpromotional content all in one place, participants have plenty to talk about.
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