Branded Content vs Content Brand
In an ideal world, yes. But I don't think all organizations can establish themselves as content brands because that requires an investment in an area outside of their business and comfort zone.
Having said that, I strongly believe all brands must at least think like publishers and adopt tools and processes that can help them produce and market content to the right audience and the right time in the right place.
Your favourite content generation/marketing tools
There is no fixed set of tools that we use, it depends on the client and their objectives. But as a standard, we use WordPress along with various plugins for planning and marketing the content including calendar, email and lead nurturing.
#1 Social media channel for content marketing
For B2B, you can't really beat linkedIn.
For B2C, Facebook will always reign.
Long detailed vs short snackable content
I don't think it is a battle, both formats may work depending on the brand and its audience. However, with more and more content being generated every day, and with the staggering growth of mobile, "snackable" content is becoming more of a must to maintain the attention of the majority of audiences.
The future of the Content-SEO pair
SEO has and always will be an important part of content marketing. Having said that, the future of SEO will rely less on technical signals and more on authority and social signals both of which require brands to produce more relevant, useful, entertaining and inspiring content.