The coupling of the words “content” and “marketing” creates a debate centering on the differences between publishing and selling.
By its very nature, marketing is a function of sales.
As such marketing communications activities, regardless of form — search, email, publicity (on behalf of a company), content creation, social, events, etc. — all represent activities to engage people in a sales process OR support brand reputation, which in turn, increases the likelihood of further sales, recruitment or investment later in time.
I can see why content purists, particularly those with a journalism background, flip their fricking lids at the very phrasing of “content marketing.” After all, they publish quality content.