Content Marketing Show Round Up October 2013


On Friday I had the pleasure of attending the Content Marketing Show in London. It's a free event organised by Kelvin Newman who is also responsible for Brighton SEO. I haven't had the opportunity to attend Brighton SEO yet unfortunately but have heard great things + Brighton is an awesome place!

The conference was centred around content creation and promotion. It seemed most of the speakers were focused on social rather than links, but the more social you get the more likely it is people will link also. So let’s get started with the round ups from each speaker.

Throwing shit against the wall & analysing what sticks…

Hannah Smith - Content Strategist at Distilled


Ok so interesting title.. It’s all about trying things and seeing what works. Hannah had a graphic (below) to show the different kinds of content you can produce split into four sections. Content to entertain, content to educate, content to persuade and content to convert. When creating content you need to think about which sectors your content falls into. If you create content to persuade and convert it isn't going to be shared unless it entertains or educates as well. Hannah also mentioned how content and PR are related and how together they can be a powerful force. If the PR team and content marketing team are separate make sure you work together to help promote your content.


When creating content don't always think that it has be about what you sell. A good example of this is Red Bull. They don't advertise the product, they advertise extreme sports and it works! Just see the video below...

The content you create make sure it is compatible on 99% of devices. 99% is usually easy, it's the 1% that is hard to make compatible. It's not just the content that has to be compatible make sure that the social share buttons are compatible otherwise people won't be able to share your content. Ever more important as mobile internet increases year on year.

Don't be afraid to use paid promotion. There are several services available now to promote content effectively to name a few are Outbrain, Facebook Ads and StumbleUpon Paid Discovery. Also remember to place a retargeting pixel in your content so at a later date you have the option of retargeting new content to that audience.

See the deck here.

Why Content Needs Strategy

Lauren Pope - Digital Consultant at Brilliant Noise


Laurens talk was all about the strategy behind content. In the beginning she talked about how content strategy and content marketing are two different things. If you do content marketing without content strategy first, your content marketing is likely to fail.

Lauren then went into some detail about how they do content strategy at Brilliant Noise, by following six key elements (all beginning with P!). Purpose, principles, platforms, processes, people and performance. By following these elements in your strategy no stone will be left unturned and will aid in a successful content marketing campaign. She also noted that you need to make sure what you are proposing is feasible, not all content management systems may be compatible with what you want to do.

A book was also recommended Content Strategy For The Web second edition by Kristina Halvorson.

See the deck here.

A 1950s Approach to Content Strategy

Jon Norris - Web Editor at Crunch Accounting


As a web editor Jon Norris showed us how he improved the workflow of his team. The process he used to have wasted a lot of time as it involved software that didn't talk to each other such as Google Drive, WordPress and your email.

So much time was spent with emailing each other seeing where pieces of content were up to that he came up with a solution.  A white board! It sat in the office listing team members names and where each piece of content was up to in the content process (creation, editing, ready to post). If you’re a developer apparently it's similar to a Kanban whiteboard. Then team members could easily go and look at the white board to see where content is up to rather than using email.

I see the advantages to what Jon has done here but I do feel there is software out there that can manage this process e.g. Trello.

See the deck here.

Twitter Tips from OptaJoe

Simon Banoub - Director of Marketing at Opta


Being a sports fan and Twitter user I was surprised I had never come across OptaJoe before. They are a company who sell sports data to all kinds of companies such as betting, broadcasters, news rooms to sports teams.

They primarily use Twitter as that is what works for them. They dabbled in other social media channels but concentrating their efforts on one is more beneficial to them.

Some takeaways from Simon's talk were that just because you are a business to business company doesn't mean you can't use social to talk to consumers. It makes social a lot easier in some cases and builds you brand so businesses will know about you. The end consumers are interested in sports stats which is exactly what they tweet. They discovered early on that using one Twitter account for all sports was not optimal as not everyone wants to hear about different sports, they might only be interested in football or perhaps rugby. This is why they set up different Twitter accounts for different sports. I can't agree with this more, seeing dozens of tweets from things I am not interested in wastes my time and eventually hit the unfollow button.

They grew their Twitter accounts by getting well known sports men and women to retweet their tweets. It worked as they now have nearly 500k followers just on their football account. Not bad for a business to business company. One other way they grow the accounts is getting all their staff to interact with the tweets. Every company should encourage this.

See the deck here.

Success, Failure and Making Content Work in the Long Term

Tom Elgar - CEO and Founder of Passle


Tom Elgar has obviously come from a successful background. Having some relation to serversidegroup the company responsible for enabling credit cards to be customised with images. His talk emphasised on how only 13% of businesses update there blog on regular basis. This is usually because no one person is in charge of the blog so it gets neglected.

Tom has produced a piece of online software called Passle to help combat these neglected blogs. It does look interesting as it allows businesses to blog with little effort. The basis of it is when reading an article that interests you and your business you can mark it in Passle and comment on it. Getting the whole team to do this every day/week you will have lots of great information that the team and your industry is interested in that you can use to create content for your blog. I will be looking at it some more for sure.

See the deck here.

Content Strategy For

Simon Kaplan - Content Product Lead at


It was interesting seeing someone talk about a site nearly everyone in the UK has to use. It couldn't have been an easy task Simon and his team had to trawl through over 75,000 pages and ask themselves if each piece of content was needed or how they could do it better. An example piece of content they pulled down was "How to keep bees" which was under a green living category. They decided they are not the best source of information for this kind of article. They are the government not bee keepers. By doing this and combining many articles into one with sub sections they managed to remove a high percentage of pages. Simon confirm number?

Another method they implemented was including key information people wanted in the meta description. So users didn't even have to go onto the website to get the information.

You can see the design principles used here.

See the deck (waiting for upload).

Content Marketing Trend Watch: 2014 and Beyond

Fergus Parker - CEO at Axonn Media


Something Fergus Parker said shocked me a fair bit. 90% of the world's information has been created in the last two years. That is pretty mad when you think about it. 90% in two years. It shows how fast we are no creating content with the help of digital.

Another important statistic Fergus flagged was that 65% of people are visual learners. When creating content take advantage of this by creating visual content such as videos, infographics and images.

See the deck here.

Inbound Marketing – The Art of Not Sucking

Kieran Flanagan - Marketing Director EMEA at HubSpot


Kieran started off by talking about how understanding your target audience is important. Your target audience might not be able to be put into one group so if your target audience can be split up, split them up, so you can concentrate on each audience.

Create content that you audience will get something from. Some examples Kieran gave were free email templates, free call to action templates and free stock images.

Once you have the content you need to look at the different distribution channels available to you such as blog readers, email subscribers and Facebook fans. From this you can take what audience you have, the click through rate you get and estimate the traffic potential.

A stand out quote of the day came from Kieran "If you spend 10 hours developing  a piece of content you should spend at least 10 hours promoting it." There was also another mention of paid content discovery using services such as Outbrain and Taboola. Keep an eye out for this in 2014!

See the deck here.

An Idiot’s guide to Getting Content on the Telly

Sam Orams - Founding Partner of Bespoke Banter LLP


Ever wanted to get on the TV for free? That is what Sam's talk was all about. As long as you've got something news worthy that is. I'd like to hear some feedback from Sam on how this is achievable for a small/medium sized business that doesn't really have any "news".

If you do have some news then it's all about creating a VNR (video news release). This consists of an unedited raw video of the news/event which should be about 10minuites long, accompanied by a shot list and any interviews you have.

Broadcasters don't like heavily branded videos, so keep branding to a minimum otherwise it is unlikely they will feature you.

Another question I'd like to ask Sam is once you have your VNR how do you go about distributing it and who to?

See the deck (waiting for upload).

The ZMOT is going to get you. Hide or use content marketing to face-down your demons and fight?

Matt Roberts - VP of Product/Marketing at Linkdex


Matt's talk was focused around ZMOT the zero moment of truth. ZMOT is an online term for how we decide what to buy when shopping online. Google even have a handbook on it themselves. Check it out here.

How we shop online has changed and is always evolving. Today there are so many variables. A major part of the ZMOT process is reviews. There are thousands of sites now that offer reviews of products so consumers can see what other people are saying about them. I personally like to look at reviews but do worry as they are open to manipulation and people are more inclined to leave reviews if they have had a bad experience and less inclined if they had a good experience.

See the deck (waiting for upload).

Simplyfing Personas

Gemma MacNaught - Conversion Consultant at Conversion Factory


You guessed it, Gemma's talk was all about personas and how to simplify them. You can take advantage of the new Google Analytics demographics and interest data by gaining knowledge of your audience's age, gender and favourite categories of interest.

Gemma noted how the left side of your brain and your right side of your brain work in the conversion process. You can see the graphics below how this works.

Characteristics of the new personas.

content-marketing-show-2013-1What's important to these new personas.


Each of these can be tested with various tools. Gemma recommended, CrazyEgg, Survey Monkey and Qualaroo for the left side of the brain and Five Second Test and eyequant for the right side of the brain.

See the deck here.

Don’t forget about long-form content

Sarah Howard - Head of Content at Red Rocket Media


So why create long-form content? It shows your expertise in a subject and creates a bond with your reader. With humming bird creating long-form content is even more important as the content you create can answer much more than short-form. With the content being longer and more engaging it's also going to increase average visit duration on site and lower bounce rate. Sarah gave some main tips to follow.

1. Write because you have something to say.

2. Design a great content experience. e.g. use imagery.

3. Make data driven decisions.

4. Let long form feed your short form. e.g. go into more detail on subsections of your long-form.

5. Tap into your expertise. Make sure you user the right lingo for your niche otherwise people will know your no expert.

See the deck here.

The Dos & Donts Of Hiring a Freelancer

Jo Petty - Freelance Copywriter


Make sure you shop around, look at previous work they have done and get accurate quotes. It's never good when you get charged a lot more for piece of content then you budgeted.

When you have chosen a freelancer make sure to put a full brief together so the freelancer knows exactly what you want. That way there can be no come back from the freelancer if they don't do what you briefed them to do.

Once the freelancer has delivered your work be sure to give constructive feedback good or bad. This will help build a better working relationship between you and your freelancer and will result in better work.

Oh and one last note, pay your freelancer on time. There's nothing worse than keeping them waiting!

See the deck here.

Offline Experiences That Lead To Digital Results

Tony Samios - COO at Caliber


Tony split content up into 3 different categories. Bronze content, silver content and gold content. Bronze content being described as an ordinary blog post, silver content being described as infographics/videos and gold content something out of this world like Red Bulls highest jump from space (feature video earlier in this post).

If you have the budget gold content is the way to go as it gets major coverage online. It doesn't have to be as big as Red Bulls campaign. Tony showed us another example of gold content from Kellogs. They created a pop up shop where people could buy their food with tweets! Pretty epic! It resulted in over 50k branded tweets and over 400 pieces of editorial content. Nice hey? You can see a video of it below.

Also here are couple of other gold offline content ideas using video that got tons of coverage online that Tony mentioned.

Unlock the 007 in you. You have 70 seconds!

Push For Drama - A Dramatic Surprise On A Quiet Square

See the deck (waiting for upload).

Content Strategy Process – From End to End in 15 Minutes

James Carson - Acting head of Content at Factory Media


James stressed about knowing your target audience, as if you don't know them you can't create content for them. He showed us a graph to help show what your most popular content is. First you must crawl your site with a tool such as Screaming Frog and then split your URL's up into different types of content such as news/videos/products/images. Now you know how many URLs you have for each category you can hook this up to data from Google Analytics to see how many page views each category of content gets. If you have content that is getting lots of page views but only has a small amount of URL's then you can create more as you know that category is in demand. The categories that have more URL's compared to page views you need to think about optimising and thinking why doesn't that content get many views.


He emphasised the importance of split testing titles for your content as there can be a massive difference in CTR from one to the other. He also ecommended a book called Tested Advertising Methods.

On video content he said yes it can be expensive to produce, but that once piece of content can turn into many pieces of content. From a video you can do vines, blogs posts, and have tons of unique images you take from the video.

There was also another shout out for paid distribution of content through Facebook Advertising, Taboola and Outbrain.

See the deck here.

This post was by Jamie Knop

Jamie Knop is an online marketer from Chester, UK. He specializes in SEO through link building and technical analysis. Find out more here.

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