Cleveland, Ohio

Is change coming to Content Marketing World in Cleveland?

Every industry has its hub, and for content marketing, this has been Cleveland. Since 2007, the Cleveland-based Content Marketing Institute has taught brands how to tell their unique story. In 2015, its annual Content Marketing World conference in Cleveland drew more than 3,500 people from 55 countries. Now, London-based UBM plc has purchased the institute. What does this mean for the world of content marketing?

Who is UBM plc?

UBM plc organizes business to business events and marketing services. Since 2014, its focus has been on purchasing organizations that run industry-changing trade shows. For example, it recently acquired Advantstar Communications, one of the leading developers of US-based trade shows. The purchase of the Content Marketing Institute gives UBM plc a steady foothold in the content industry.

Why Content Marketing?

Why would an events company be interested in content marketing? UBM plc is focusing on B2B development, and according to, “content marketing is one of the fastest growth segments of the marketing industry. By building a combined technology and marketing event portfolio, UBM and CMI will serve the market in the best way possible.” As UBM plc continues to strengthen its B2B work, investing in content marketing is a logical fit, since Content Marketing World and the Intelligent Content Conference help businesses develop their ability to share their message with others, including other businesses. UBM plc also notes that content marketing is an excellent complement to its technology business, and there are potential points of convergence and cross-pollination between these two elements of UBM plc’s business.

Content marketers

Content Marketing World will still bring content marketing leaders together in Cleveland this year.

Is Change Coming for Content Marketing World?

At the moment, UBM plc sees its purchase as an investment in an area that’s already seeing strong growth. Currently, they plan to continue to host Content Marketing World in Cleveland. However, with UBM plc’s global reach including 400 global events run by 5,100 employees in 20 countries, this business development does give both companies the ability to spread the enthusiasm about content marketing to other places over time. This year’s “Content Strikes Back” conference scheduled for September 6-9th in Cleveland will go ahead as scheduled, with its keynote speaker Mark Hamill. UBM plc doesn’t want to change the conference if it’s working, and with more than a 260 percent growth rate in the past three years and more than 7 million in revenues, it’s clear that the conference not only brings people together, it’s a solid business venture as well.

Within the Content Marketing Institute, the team is also transitioning to UBM plc. Half of CMI’s independent contractors will join the new company, while the rest will continue as part-time contractors. This means that the institutional memory and experience gained over years of running successful Content Marketing World conferences will be maintained.

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