The curtain has come down on the final Content Marketing Show of the year. As the sister show of Brighton SEO, the quality of the speakers was, as usual, excellent, and I thought I’d pick out my 3 favourite talks to write about in this review. Here goes …
Rich content for the cash-strapped – Mindy Gofton
This talk by Mindy Gofton from i-Com was the absolute highlight of the conference for me. Why? I go to a lot of content marketing conferences and events, and all of them rely heavily on examples from big brands to make their points. Can you afford to send a man into space? Me neither – so I’m not sure hammering home the Red Bull example time-after-time is especially helpful.
Mindy’s talk about content marketing for smaller brands with limited budgets was both refreshing and illuminating. She made several excellent points, such as:
- Customer pain points are the key to content strategy for the cash-strapped brand. Don’t burn through your budget trying to create a viral sensation on YouTube; write thought-leadership blogs that provide users with the answers to their queries.
- “Build it and they will come” is a false maxim. When a smaller brand does not have an existing audience on social media, they should seriously consider a modest investment in social advertising (e.g. Facebook’s promoted posts) to get some initial eyeballs on their content.
- Trial and error isn’t an option for content marketing agencies who take on clients with small budgets – the content has to be quick to produce, and quick to perform.
- In addition to blogs, surveys and competitions are simple but effective forms of content for smaller brands to commission.
Why people favourite tweets – Dr. Max Wilson
In what I believe is the first presentation I’ve seen from a bone fide academic at a content marketing conference, Dr. Max Wilson from the University of Nottingham shared the findings of his team’s research into how people behave on Twitter.
To get retweets, we should:
- Be ‘informers’ rather than ‘meformers’.
- Never use exclamation marks
- Sometimes use question marks
To get favourites, we should:
- Be useful
- Be entertaining
- Tap into shared sentiment
- Post things that require follow-up (for those who use Twitter’s favourites tool as a form of bookmarking)
A more comprehensive analysis of these findings is available in Dr. Wilson’s slidedeck (below), but I found his closing comments about our choice of language on Twitter very thought-provoking: evidently, brands that consciously echo the language of their users gain greater popularity on Twitter than brands who stick to their own ‘house style’.
How to guarantee a 0% response rate from blogger outreach – Hannah Warder
Digital marketing specialist and part-time blogger Hannah Warder from White.net gave us an entertaining run-through of some blogger outreach fails, several of which are reproduced for our enjoyment in her slidedeck, below. My personal favourite is the PR who wanted Hannah to partake in National Diva Day to “get the boys back”. On behalf of all women not stuck in the 1950s, thank you Hannah for declining.
Mixed in with the entertainment, however, was a sound strategy for successful blogger outreach, including:
- Do your research – don’t just email all bloggers
- Find suitable bloggers by searching Twitter hashtags
- Use tools like Followerwonk and Linkdex to help make your selection
- Make a relevant and personal approach – but don’t ask for too much
I’m told a follow-up blog piece is underway so Hannah, if you’re reading this, feel free to link to it from the comments box.