Top 10 Takeaways From Content Marketing World 2014
Contributor Arnie Kuenn sums up the most surprising, enlightening and actionable tips gathered at this week's event.
This week, I had the pleasure of attending “the largest content marketing event on the planet,” Content Marketing World 2014. With more than 2,600 delegates from over 50 countries and 60+ sponsors in attendance, many of the industry’s top experts were gathered in the same space.
As a result, I gained invaluable insights into the ever-growing world of content marketing. In an effort to share with you the most important takeaways from the event, I got input from Vertical Measures Account Director Dave Haar and Vertical Measures Content Marketing Team Manager Drew Eastmead, who helped me compile the list below. (Thanks, guys!)
1. Write Down Your Goals
Takeaway from Joe Pulizzi, Content Marketing Institute Founder
People with clear, written goals accomplish things far faster than those who don’t. It has been proven that successful content marketers have a written strategy and closely follow it. That’s the difference that moves you from good to great.
2. Get Closer To Your Customers
Takeaway from Andrew Davis, Author, Brandscaping: Unleashing the Power of Partnerships
You need to get closer and closer to the center of your customer’s universe. Where are they and what do they do everyday online? Create moments of inspiration that send customers on their purchase journey. Moments of inspiration create ROI.
3. Experience Marketing Is The Future
Takeaway from Robert Rose, Chief Strategist for the Content Marketing Institute
Your content should be strategic enough to change the company and its relationship with the customer.
What experiences have you created for someone today? (Robert also shared this free chapter (PDF) from his upcoming book: Experiences: The 7th Era of Marketing.)
4. Immediacy Is Critical
Takeaway from Scott Stratten, President of Un-Marketing
The future is experience marketing. It is not true that the number of interactions with a customer builds a relationship. Quality counts more than quantity. Create content so great that people would pay for it.
In social, the speed at which we reply is almost as important as the authenticity. Immediacy is critical, along with transparency and authenticity. The customer just wants to be heard. Scheduling your posts is like sending a mannequin to a networking event –- don’t do it!
5. It Has Always Been About The Story
Takeaway from Kevin Spacey, Award-winning Actor and Producer
Connect with your audience. How do you educate, entertain, and surprise them? Good content marketing is not a crapshoot – it has always been about the story. There has never been a better moment for marketers, because we now have the ability to reach vast audiences across wide range of platforms. Audiences want stories and are dying for them – it’s our job to provide those stories.
6. Personalization Is Key
Takeaway from Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs
Write as if you are writing to one person. Make it as personal as possible and the story will flow from there. Use the word “you” — often. Make the customer the hero of your story.
7. Provide Value Through Email
Takeaway from Brian Clark, Founder of Copyblogger
With email marketing, it’s critical to build your list and create an asset. Nurture your prospects. Commit to delivering free and useful value before AND after people provide their email addresses to you.
8. Content Marketing Isn’t “Dying”
Takeaway from Marcus Sheridan, Founder of The Sales Lion
Marcus does not believe the future for content is bleak. He asks, “10 or 20 years from now, will you stop teaching? Will you stop educating? Will you stop innovating? If your answer is no, then there really is no ‘death of content marketing’.”
9. Content Creates Trust
Takeaway from Julie Fleischer, Director, Data + Content + Media at Kraft Foods
Content is not intrusive or disruptive. It creates trust and demonstrates that we are connecting around things we both (the brand and consumer) value. Fan the flames on hot content by quickly distributing it to additional channels.
10. Clients Need A “Lead” Agency
Takeaway from Kirk Cheyfitz, CEO and chief storyteller of Story Worldwide
Media fragmentation has led to agency fragmentation; there are tons of specialized agencies. Clients need a lead agency, an agency of integration – one that understands both advertising and content. It should be you, the content marketing agency.
As you can see, the presenters at this year’s Content Marketing World were top notch. From Joe Pulizzi, the founder of Content Marketing Institute himself, to award-winning actor and producer Kevin Spacey, each speaker provided excellent, thought-provoking and actionable content marketing advice. Overall, thanks to the hard-working team at CMI, this year’s event was truly one for the books.
Did you attend Content Marketing World 2014? Share your top takeaways below.
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