The 90-day report: pitches, awards, training and taking the CMA forward Three months after starting at the Content Marketing Association, managing director Catherine Maskell reflects on what she’s learned and talks about some of her first initiatives. It feels as though my first 90 days at the CMA have gone by in a blur: so many people met, so many events attended, so much to learn and understand about the burgeoning world of content marketing. For me, it’s been an essential way to get a clear sense of where the industry could be headed, and to plan some initiatives for later this year. Two impressions in particular stand out. One is the welcome I’ve had from everyone I’ve met, both members and other organisations. This makes my transition from client-side marketer much easier, but also tells me how much interest there is in the wider marketing world about what our members do. And two, how much both we, as the CMA, and our members, have to say. The diversity of the CMA membership – content specialists, media agencies, digital agencies, social specialists and so on – means the work they do under the banner of content marketing has a huge span. Last month, for example, TI Productions, part of CMA member Time Inc, won a contract for BBC3. That diversity is a great source of strength in today’s complicated world because no two clients start their content marketing journey from the same place. That tells me CMA members can serve any need. CMA ‘matchmaker’ service Last month saw CMA member Cedar emerge victorious in a pitch for the Eurostar business, following a spot of ‘matchmaking’ by the CMA’s Advance service. You can read the news here. Eurostar received 15 responses from CMA members, including a couple where CMA members paired up to pitch jointly. As I write we have several other briefs going through Advance. One of the clients tells me that they are using Advance because simply going out and fishing themselves in the market is too hard and time consuming. Another has a complex brief that may need more than one agency and, where appropriate, they’d like them to pitch together. As a former client, I get this. The day job is demanding enough, without trawling through dozens of RFI responses. Anything that saves the client time is a bonus. And as content becomes more multi-faceted and complex, so the client search becomes harder, not least because so many agencies say they do content but don’t always ‘walk the walk’, or claim that they can do everything when they can’t. This is where Advance is a big help. First, any client knows that CMA members by definition do content brilliantly. No wasted time there, then. And second, under our auspices they can put together combinations of agencies to handle their varied needs with just one pitch. I’m convinced that the CMA’s ability to bring together different members with different skills will be a major factor going forward. Awards training…and more I know, from the emails and queries we get, that many agencies and clients are limbering up to enter the CMA Awards. As someone who’s judged awards, I get frustrated by entries that, well, aren’t quite as good as they can be. “What a shame,” I think, “all that effort and they’re on the back foot from the start.” With this in mind, the CMA ran two sessions last month with CMA consultant editor Dominic Mills on how to write better awards entries. He’s done even more juries than I have, and knows how judges think and what they’re looking for. Like me, he’s on a mission to improve the quality of entries. The better the level of entries, the more kudos the awards have and, thus, the winners. The sessions – a bargain at £50.00, if I may say so – were sold out and received a fantastic response.  “It’s a unique peek behind the curtain into what an award judges’ motivations are,” said one delegate, “and a big advantage when writing an entry.” Another said: “I’ve never written an award entry before. I feel more confident and excited.” And a third commented: “It was a fantastic masterclass, unique insights and invaluable context for any entry writer.” Dominic says: “There are so many places an entry go wrong, but if there’s one thing that really annoys me is when there is no clear statement of the brief and the targets. If, as with the CMA, the award is based on effectiveness, how do you then judge the results if you don’t know what the aims were? It sounds simple, but it’s absolutely essential to get this right.” Given our commitment to the awards, we’ve invited Dominic back again to run another session – on August 15. And, by the way, that’s three weeks before the entry deadline on September 8. That’s still time to write (or rewrite) your entries. Finally, talking about the awards, we still have a sponsorship slot open.  It’s a wonderful opportunity for any organisation that wants to link its name to effective, creative, trend-setting content marketing, and to get their name in front of leading agencies and clients. More training Training is one area where you tell us we can make a difference both to members and clients. With that in mind, we’ve been taking the temperature of other areas you’d like training in. Some of the areas you’ve suggested are: pitching for new business; communicating the value of marketing to internal stakeholders; dealing with expectations from top management; mentoring, coaching and influencing; and building a better understanding of distribution platforms. We already do a lot of training, such as this course on video next month, but we can always do more. So we’ll be investigating the viability of new specialisms in the coming months. In the meantime, if there are any other areas you’d like us to consider, just get in touch with me at Breakfast in Manchester…and other events Finally, I’m delighted to announce that we are taking our established and much-loved Digital Breakfast sessions on tour. They will be a great way to spread the word and introduce our members and their skills to a more diverse audience. We start in Manchester on October 10th, hosted by CMA member Havas Media, and then plan to visit Bristol, Birmingham and East Anglia. In the meantime, and in line with the fact that the CMA Awards are the only ones focused on effectiveness, we’re putting on an ROI special for our October Digital Breakfast in London on October 4th. Topic areas include how to measure success, and how to choose the right KPI’s. You can book tickets for all our Breakfasts here. To keep things fresh, we’re also looking to add new types of events. One is for Future Content Leaders, where next-generation content leaders can enjoy some ‘free-range thinking’ about the future, as well as network. It’s an evening event, scheduled for October 19th.  Appropriately, it’s in the Shoreditch gallery space of CMA member TCOLondon The second is a client-focused event, where marketers, together with CMA members, can explore some of the key issues that they confront. These include: measurement, organisational structures, the pros and cons of editorial boards and working – or not – with influencers, and plenty of other chewy stuff besides. We’re still working out the details of that, but as soon as we have them we’ll let you know. I hope my 90-day report gives you a flavour of some of the exciting things we’ve been up to. I look forward to seeing you one of the aforementioned events. Catherine Maskell, Managing Director, The CMA Read more Video Storytelling for Content Marketers 26th September 2017 This one-day video storytelling workshop is designed to equip content marketers with the knowledge and tools they need to take advantage of the growth of video. The workshop mixes together social science, behavioral, economical and creative storytelling. Helping delegates understand how stories work, why we like them and how they can be built into professional communication. By infusing your communication with storytelling ideas and techniques you can help your content to: Attract organic audiences; Connect emotionally; Drive audiences to take specific action Create viral, organic sharing. Key learning outcomes By the end of this workshop, participants will: Understand the science behind why stories are so powerful in causing audience action. Have immediately applicable techniques to find / craft stories which drive action and behavior change. Know how to build a story, working back from the required call to action or KPI. Who should attend? The course is relevant to all content marketers, with a specific advantage to: Copywriters and content creators, who will learn how to seek out certain types of stories and tweak their existing stories to reach milestones or KPIs. Creatives looking to understand how to use storytelling to position (or re-position) their client, campaign or product in the minds of audiences. B2B content creators looking to understand how storytelling can increase interest and engagement with typically dry content. Venue, date & timings WeWork, 3 Waterhouse Square,138 Holborn, London, EC1N 2SW Wednesday 26th September 2017 9:00 am – 4:00 pm Cost CMA Members – £299 Non-Members –  £399 How to book Please click here and fill out the booking form. Booking deadline 20th September 2017 Any questions please contact: About the trainer Stephen Follows, Creative Director, Catsnake Stephen is leading exponent and trainer in the art of using storytelling to achieve measurable outcomes.  He has taught professional storytelling to a variety of clients including national institutions (inc The National Trust and BBC), companies (inc Virgin Trains and Wordtracker) and charities (inc Unicef, Age UK). Stephen has created and led a number of storytelling consultancy projects for The National Trust, which include training hundreds of staff members, creating innovative visitor experiences and managing the stories of an entire castle.   “The Power of Storytelling” written by Stephen Follows for the National Trust and voiced by Sir Ian McKellen.  This video introduces the basic ideas behind why stories are such a powerful method of communication. Testimonials From previous storytelling training “We ran a series of workshops for headquarters teams last week, and Stephen was the star turn. He evangelised for great story-telling in a witty and engaging way. He gave us the science, the mind and the heart of storytelling and backed it up with examples of great short filmmaking.” DANIEL DODD – HEAD OF COMMUNICATIONS, THE NATIONAL TRUST ‘Stephen captives the audience and takes them on a journey of discovery.  I have seen the talk 3 times now and like a good movie, I uncover something new each time.  I would recommend the talk to anyone looking to learn about storytelling and why we share stories – whether you are a novice or a seasoned pro, you will come away knowledgeable and excited.’ SIMON SANETT – HEAD OF DIGITAL STRATEGY, PORTER NOVELLI ‘It’s rare that you experience a presentation that completely changes the way you think about a subject. But that’s exactly what I got from Stephen’s fantastic talk on the principles and value of good storytelling. Stephen is such an entertaining and informative speaker. His unique perspective on telling stories is fascinating and insightful and is packed with practical advice. I recommend this talk to anyone interested in making their stories work, whatever the context.’ TIM TUCKER, CONTENT MARKETING CONSULTANT From previous CMA teaching “Stephen is a hugely charismatic and entertaining speaker and I could listen to him all day. Literally. He comes at content from an original and very compelling angle and you can see the results in the great work he has been behind.” KATH HIPWELL, HEAD OF CONTENT STRATEGY, RED BEE “The trainer really knew his stuff and managed to cover so much in a single day. The topics he covered were really interesting and insightful. Looking forward to applying some of his tips and theories to practice.” FRANCESCO AGRESTI, VIDEO PRODUCER, KAPLAN INTERNATIONAL “Thoroughly enjoyable session, Lots of great information and insight to take back to the team.” SARAH DEANE, MARKETING ASSISTANT, ZURICH MUNICIPAL “Well organised and highly informative training on digital marketing” SARAH WILLIAMS, CONTENT MARKETING MANAGER, BLOOMSBURY  “Stephen was fantastic. He was engaging, had great examples and covered a huge spread of topics that were both interesting and applicable.” HELEN CASSIDY, ACCOUNT DIRECTOR, THINK  Film School testimonials “Stephen’s work is bursting with the same unstoppable creative energy as the person himself. He is driven, focused, and completely committed to utter perfection, always making sure that each detail is as polished as it can possibly be.  As a writer, Stephen’s ideas never fail to amuse, surprise, entertain and amaze: at every turn, just when you thought you knew where the story was going, an unexpected twist will take you to a completely new and exciting place. It’s a delight to work with him – a Renaissance man for the 21st century.” DR ROBERTO TROTTA – DIRECTOR AT CENTRE FOR LANGUAGES, CULTURE AND COMMUNICATION, IMPERIAL COLLEGE LONDON “Stephen has been a visiting teacher at the NFTS for the past three years, delivering bespoke lectures (for the whole school on a cross-specialisation basis) and individual seminars on the courses I run. Not only are they always intellectually challenging (I have attended them), but they are notable for the level of engagement with the students — Mr Follows scores very highly in that regard with the students.” CHRIS AUTY – DEPARTMENT HEAD, NATIONAL FILM AND TELEVISION SCHOOL “Stephen Follows is an experienced writer, producer and teacher with a strong list of credits. He has an impressive knowledge of the structures and trends of the Film and Television industry globally and is a sought after authority on the subject.” PAUL THOMPSON – ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, NYU TISH “Stephen is one of the best informed and prepared tutors at the Met. Student feedback from his sessions is excellent, and the fact that they can follow him on his invaluable industry blog is a bonus that few tutors can offer.” STEVE PINHAY – HEAD OF PRODUCING, MET FILM SCHOOL Previous film training “Classes were a joy to attend every evening as Stephen is inspiring in his wealth of knowledge and teaches his students like colleagues and friends. I would highly recommend this course and Stephen as an educator. I would attend any course he offered as I feel I learnt more in this course than my 3-year BA.” GINA POWELL – UNSTOPPABLE ENTERTAINMENT “Stephen is an inspiring, and creative teacher and I learned more about the real world of film production than I could ever have gleaned from a dozen books on the subject. I’d recommend anyone who’s serious about a career as a producer to spend time in Stephen’s company and listen.” MARK LO – ASYLUM GIANT “Throughout the long information packed days Stephen was never less than an engaging, super enthusiastic fountain of knowledge, and, for what I learnt from it, the price was a steal! For anyone searching for a super short course that teaches them the no holds barred reality of what it takes to become a UK Independent Film Producer and get a feature film made, look no further.” SUSIE WATSON – FREELANCE DIRECTOR “I was stunned in his extensive knowledge about the industry. Stephen was always attentive on what I wanted to learn and introduced me to several industry professionals – I recommend Stephen’s classes, he is truly an expert in producing and an excellent teacher.” KARINE PAWEL – M&C SAATCHI Read more Four key content marketing trends for the rest of 2017 It might not seem possible but we are already half way through 2017 and autumn is just a brace of weeks away. So now is a good time to take stock of how the content world has developed in the past six months, and what the key implications are for brands and their editorial teams. The podcast revival continues We have written many times about the growth of podcasting. The most unlikely revival since the return of TV show Twin Peaks, goes from strength to strength fuelled by highly successful crime and issue based podcasts from across the pond like Serial and Death, Sex and Money and humour based ones from the UK like this and this. Almost every significant media company now has a portfolio of podcasts on all manner of topics. Even the BBC, which has been issuing its programmes as podcasts for years, has hopped aboard the bandwagon with its Serial-esque Beyond Reasonable Doubt. The impressive levels of engagement that podcasts attain makes them a perfect place for brands to reach out to attentive, invariably intelligent audiences. So far most of the brands that have produced their own podcasts, as opposed to sponsoring them, have tended to be startups like the excellent Backlisted podcast created by Unbound or B2B tech companies like this from Accenture. I do think that more brands, even FMCG ones, will experiment with podcasts over the coming months, perhaps taking inspiration from podcasts like Saints of Somewhere which build a series around a very smart concept. The unstoppable Instagram It seems to have been a very good year so far for the Facebook-owned Instagram platform and in particular the way it has successfully courted brands and media companies. After making a series of long overdue changes last year, which to be fair many of which were copied from Snapchat, like Instagram Stories, this year it has tweaked the platform further beefing up its analytics. Snapchat is still an enticing place for youth focused brands, but Instagram’s brand savvy, and large audience figures (700 million to Snapchat’s 200 million) mean it has the edge over its rival. Expect to see brands pour more and more resources into the platform as the year develops. Addressing Voice Search At the CMA Digital Breakfast earlier in the month Stephen Kenwright Head of Search of Branded3 quoted figures that predicted that by 2020 as many as 50% of online searches will be voice powered by Alexa, Cortana, Siri or whatever else that might come along in the coming years. Some of these voice searches will deliver traditional text results, while others will deliver voice only responses. It is the latter scenario then that presents both a problem and an opportunity for brands. The problem being that searchers are often only presented with a limited selection of responses by Google and Bing. But also opportunity in that if brands can perfect the way that they produce voice optimised content – in other words content that directly answers questions consumers are asking – they may find themselves securing that coveted key voice search position. There is a lot more about the topic on the write up from the Digital Breakfast here. Email’s unlikely revival There’s growing evidence that certain demographics feel more comfortable with email communications from brands as opposed to hearing from them via social media. Conversely email as a platform has become more attractive for brands as they own the channel and don’t have the filter the content via the politics and algorithms of social media. Really well thought out editorially-driven branded emails are becoming a major tool for brands again. The only caveat is that the implementation of GDPR in less than a year means that some brands might have to re-examine their email strategy. Commissioned by The CMA Read more CMA INTERNATIONAL CONTENT MARKETING AWARDS ARE OPEN FOR ENTRY! We are delighted to announce that our CMA International Content Marketing Awards are back and now open for entry. Agencies from across the world will offer up their greatest work from the past 12 months for judgement by some of the biggest names in marketing. Last year we had over 400 entries from 100 different agencies, and 21 countries, making them the most competitive content marketing awards in the world. The event provides the industry with a stunning showcase of talent, expertise, inspiration and insight for brand marketers the world over. New Categories! Excitingly, this year we have introduced more new awards designed to reflect the rapid changes in content marketing. There are now 28 categories available to enter, to win Gold, Silver and Bronze. The winners will be put forward for consideration for the ultimate Grand Prix award. This year you can enter the same entry into as many categories as you like. You can view all categories here Entries Entries can be made until Friday September 8th at ENTER NOW!!!! View 2016 Winners here Criteria The Qualifying period for entries is:    1ST SEPTEMBER 2016 – 31ST AUGUST 2017 Host This years awards will be hosted by the wonderful Katherine Ryan.  This Canadian abroad is the UK’s 2017 break-out star. Katherine recently garnered rave reviews as the presenter and writer of Channel 4’s critically acclaimed prime time series, How Did You Get So Rich? and also regularly appears on all the UK’s major panel shows from BBC’s QI, Have I Got News For You and Live at the Apollo to Dave’s Taskmaster Series 2 (which she won) and Channel 4’s Out of 10 Cats as well as co-hosting two back to back series of Comedy Central’s upcoming Your Face or Mine reboot with Jimmy Carr. TUES 28TH NOVEMBER, THE ROUNDHOUSE, LONDON Read more Is creating video for social platforms becoming too complex? Over the last few weeks, one of the most important upgrades in social media that’s likely to happen this year has been rolled out. After making an announcement in February, Facebook finally seems to be adding sounds to videos embedded in news feeds which are seen from its mobile phone apps – though not via the web. Put simply if you hover over the video it starts playing, as it did previously, but this time not silently but with sound. It is a controversial move and one that has already sparked a fairly significant social media backlash. Critics of the move have taken to Twitter (of all places) to announce that they are now deleting the Facebook app and only accessing the platform via the web. They cite instances from a decade or so ago when MySpace, and many other sites, delivered autoplay ads with the sound up. That didn’t end too well for the company did it! The move has accompanied the creation of a new service called Facebook Watch in which the platform attempts to assert itself as a key place for short form professional video. Rolled out in the US last week Watch features content from as many as 30 partners and is being positioned as a rival to content from Twitter and Snapchat. It seems as if the platform is finally making good on a promise from a few years back that video would be the heart of the platform. In theory this should be good news for brands as it opens up yet another way of creating engaging videos. In reality it is likely to be an issue that they don’t consider or even just ignore. That’s because online video on platforms is now starting to get extremely complex. Of course, if you hate the idea then there are ways round hearing the audio. You can obviously turn the sound on your phone. Alternatively you can access Facebook Settings and turn it off. That isn’t the point though. The interesting part for Facebook and brands is to see how many people will actually make the efforts to tame the sound. There is evidence that a lot of tweaks to social media are initially hated by users, who as times goes by grow accustomed to them. Ironically the move has largely been driven by brands. Facebook knows if it wants to broaden its video advertising (and video is so such an important part of its strategy) that it needs to be able to offer autoplay sound from the off. So it needs to get its users accustomed to auto play sound. Yet most of that ad content was originally created for other platforms – like TV – and is being repurposed for Facebook, and isn’t necessarily native to the platform. The move does however have implications for video content creators, especially those who focus on Facebook video. Sound has arguably been a lower priority for some content creators as they seek engagement on the platform. For many having a viewer watch a few seconds with no sound on auto may has been enough to promote a message. It has meant though that the start of videos have been optimised to grab the viewer’s attention and then they have been hooked in with the moving images and the subtitles. The next Digital Breakfast will cover how to use short video formats to attract, engage and drive loyalty Now the question is how should content creators approach Facebook video? Does it make sense to make the most of the addition of sound and use that as an initial hook. Or keep to the established way of doing things without sound initially and with subtitles? The grammar of Facebook video production could be set to change, but only if Facebook users respond in a certain way. It may simply be that the majority of videos are still watched on Facebook on autoplay with the sound down. The future of video content on social platforms seems to be in a constant state of flux. Snapchat recently allowed its users to record six videos at a time while dropping its ten second limit on recording. Meanwhile, Instagram is experimenting with a feature that enables two people to stream content at the same time via split screen. For brands social networks remain at the heart of their video distribution strategies. The only problem is the proliferation of platforms, different methods of presentations and customisation options are now starting to cause real headaches. Video is the future for social networks, but brands scan very easily get stuck in the past. Commissioned by The CMA Read more B2B Marketing Challenges August’s Digital Breakfast took a well-established format into largely uncharted territory. For the first time, it focused exclusively on B2B content – a move that clearly struck a chord with a large and engaged audience. Four speakers were lined up to explore the role of content in B2B business, each bringing a distinctive and insightful view. A B2B content primer First up was Kobi Omenaka, a Google Certified Digital Marketing Consultant, Teacher and Speaker. Kobi kicked the breakfast off with a primer looking at exactly what B2B content marketing is, and the types of problems it is solving. He stressed from the off that, contrary to myth, that B2B content is not boring, it is just as interesting as B2C content. Kobi said there was a requirement for B2B content because “interruptive marketing is less effective, people are now wise to the carpet bomb approach of so many channels. They are barraged by a lot more content from lots of different sources.” He then gave the attendees a little history pointing to the creation of The Furrow, a magazine that was published by agricultural machinery manufacturer John Deere as long ago as the 1890s. He stressed how it was unique at the time as it was an “independent, unbiased source of information, not necessarily talking about the product.” Kobi then suggested that B2B content marketing wasn’t as difficult as some in the industry portray it to be. “With B2B you at least have a fixed audience – unlike B2C which can be for everyone,” he explained. “With B2B you are selling to a person within the company. Your B2B people still have pain points, passions etc. They want to get promoted, want longer relationships with you and so on.” He also pointed out that typically B2B content targets fewer people. For example, some content might only need to be read by a handful of people for it to have achieved its goals. Kobi then took the attendees on a tour of the different types of content in the B2 sphere. 1. Infographics – These are engaging and shareable. Yet on the negative side, difficult to make, difficult to measure ROI and easy to copy 2. Email and blogs – These can be highly effective and have clear SEO benefits. They are also supported by accurate and advanced analytics. However there is a low barrier to entry, and there’s evidence in terms of emails that some people have Inbox fatigue. 3. Video – There is a strong channel in YouTube, great analytics and SEO benefits. However there is a high barrier to entry and videos require full attention from viewers. Crucially, to be engaging, the presenter needs to be ‘a bit of a character.’ 4. Podcasts –  Big opportunity for the B2B space that is generally unexplored in the UK. Large growth of podcast audience, also listeners don’t have to give their full attention, like video. Great analytics and podcasts don’t require ‘a character’ to be engaging. B2B content strategy Second to present was Mike Baxter, Product and Content Lead, Goal Atlas, who focused on the strategic ways to approach B2B content marketing Mike explained that he has worked since 2001 on content for B2B companies. His background is in psychology and his specialism is looking at customer experience, which, he argues, is as important in B2B content as it is in B2C. He started by asking the question – “why are we doing B2B content marketing?” To which he replied it was largely about changing the perceptions of the audience we are trying to reach. Mike said that in order to do this we need to understand psychology and referenced ‘Social Identity theory’ as being central in the way that we classify people. He said that the core purpose of B2B content is to get the prospect to think we are ‘one of them’ and that there is a synergy between the companies/individuals. The way to do this is by offering information that’s useful, valuable and trustworthy. They then go on the journey from being ‘one of them’ to ‘one of us.’ And the development of this type of relationship means that they will value us and will potentially have an ongoing relationship with us. Mike then went on to talk about content’s role in the sales funnel, saying that sometimes not everyone in the company agrees what the sales funnel is and how it should be handled. For example, sales and marketing may have different views on this. He added too that we need to recognise that the sales funnel is moving from a population of many, to a population of few as people progress down it – and that different content plays different roles in this journey. His key takeaways are that we need to be systematic about how content is both measured and optimised. Mike then went on to discuss the importance of the nature of the content that is created. He cited content that he had created for Econsultancy about digital transformation. He mentioned how it had become number one on Google initially, but now notes that it is down to number five and thinks that this might be because the content was too ‘sales focused.’ He said that the lesson here is that companies need to be clear about whether they are selling or informing. To illustrate this point he cited the Rubik’s Cube as being complicated, adding that it was manageable as it was possible to achieve results if one found the right route. Whereas, as Mike continued, the Taliban in Afghanistan are complex as there are so many factors which influence the way that they behave and their approach. He underlined that the key thing for content marketers in the B2B sector was to move their perception of their approach from an art to a science. His four points to help people achieve this are: 1. Find the existing patterns in your content-related data – Undertake inventory audit and competitor analysts. 2. Clarify and connect business and communications strategy – In some instances these are not properly aligned. 3. Pinpoint key tactical objectives – Enhance digital asset management for cross channel deployment. This will enable marketers to publish new hubpages. 4. Connect it all together – Companies need to use goal mapping to ensure that everyone is clear about roles, strategy and objectives. Mike finished with four key conclusions for B2B companies who want to maximise their content-driven approach. 1. Manage the sales funnel in a standardised way. 2. Manage customer journeys – Ensuring content covers generic issues (product-category and solution-type) as well as your own specific product and brand proposition. 3. Manage the B2B content marketing process making it complicated not complex. 4. Transform the way that prospects perceive you – From one-of-them to one-of-us The complexities of B2B content The third presenter was Sam Gallagher – client services director Progressive Content, who began by acknowledging some of the complexities in creating content for B2B enterprises. He suggested that some in the industry have a inferiority complex compared with creators of B2C content, However he argued that while there is complexity in B2B content that it is as multifaceted as B2C. He then ran though his ten lessons for understanding some of the complex challenges in B2B content. 1. There’s no such thing as boring in B2B – Sam said that there is only “good content and bad content and that is measured in its usefulness to its intended audience.” 2. Customers don’t think in campaigns – He argued that an abstract rarely resonates at campaign level. B2B content needs to meet needs on a day to day basis. 3. Vanity metrics don’t translate in B2B  – Sam said that was especially true of video where, for example, a successful campaign might only be 100 views etc. 4. The best marketing is a mix of relevancy and relationships – With content working to unlock inherent trust and relationships within a business. Content supports relationships. 5. To be relevant you have to be agile – B2B content needs to respond to ideas and changes in the media landscape, eg an accountant in the business might need to have a view on the budget etc. B2B content marketers need to be agile and think about publishing frequently. 6. Understanding the rules but knowing when to break them – For example some topics require longer content than the 600 word industry standard. 7. Mix specialisms with creative craft – Sam talked of the importance of unlocking intellectual capital in large companies and communicating it. 8. Central marketing does not have a monopoly on good ideas – Sam suggested that, for example, customer enquiries often inspire new content ideas 9. Listen and learn – For example Sam said that B2B is getting to grips with social and how to use it as a distribution channel. It needs to be part of a content planning strategy. 10. Close the loop –  B2B content creators need to learn to harness data and learn from analytics. Is B2B still boring to boring? The last person to present was Giuseppe Caltabiano, Head of Content Marketing Advisory Services, NewsCred He began his presentation by asking ‘Is B2B still boring to Boring?’ He said that when it comes to data Vs emotions the perception is that B2B is more boring. This however doesn’t have to be the case with Giuseppe citing LinkedIn’s Dinner for Five series. Giuseppe added that historically B2B requires a more rational approach, but that new technologies, new communications channels (social media) are changing the way B2B companies approach clients. And in some ways the new methods of communication, which includes content marketing, have been adopted by B2B companies at faster speed than B2C. In terms of messaging Giuseppe pointed out that was a real difference between the content marketing approaches. He said that B2B content should inform and educate, while B2C content should inspire. Another important point that Guiseppe made was that multiple influencers are involved in a B2B decision – something that is not always the case in B2C. There maybe as many four different departments involved in a  decision making process and one of the complexities of B2B marketing is that content needs to address all these individuals and sectors effectively. Yet one advantage B2B has over B2C is that there is a more limited number of platforms to use. As Giuseppe explained, the distribution channels are not endless. In reality there is really only three or four that are efficient. Giuseppe then unpacked the B2B content distribution plan citing the importance of, and difference between, owned, paid and earned media. He also advised caution in companies selecting the right KPIs as these are different along the different points of the sales process. He also discussed how companies shouldn’t write off different platforms – perceiving them as being just B2B or B2C. For example, there is now a number of B2B companies that use tactics like Facebook Live to illustrate the human side of their business. Finally Giuseppe went onto nail what he sees as the two most prevalent myths about B2B content. Firstly that the ‘humans have lesser attention span than that a goldish,’ he argued that this isn’t the case and anyhow should not be used as an argument to dumb down content. Secondly “buyers are 67% (or 57%, or 90%) of the way through the purchase journey before they want to talk to a supplier (or to sales)” If you work in B2B marketing, you’ll have been told that buyers are either 57%, 67% or (more recently) 90% of the way through the purchase journey before they want to talk to a supplier. Giuseppe argued that the basis for at least two of these stats is actually very thin and has been so widely misrepresented. Commissioned by The CMA Read more 6 Bloody Great Game of Thrones Marketing Campaigns You know nothing, marketers. Like Star Wars meets Frozen and just as bankable – Game of Thrones is the marketing gift that keeps on giving. Fans got chills last week as winter finally arrived in the Seven Kingdoms bringing what is sure to be the most action-packed, violent and naked season yet. In spite of the uphill struggle faced by the US TV network to curb illegal streams and downloads (The Drum reports there were 91.8 views across piracy platforms of Episode 1 alone), the Season 7 premiere bagged the highest ratings in the show’s history – with 16.1 million HBO subscribers tuning in live. Listen carefully and you can hear the sound of marketers rubbing their hands together. As the Game of Thrones Season 7-inspired campaigns roll in thick and fast, we round up the best ones to date. Tourism Ireland’s 77-metre tapestry Good enough to adorn the walls of the Red Keep You’d be hard-pressed to find a more imaginative and well-executed campaign than Tourism Ireland’s  77-metre long, Bayeux-style tapestry featuring key Game of Thrones scenes. Devised by Publicis London to promote Northern Ireland as a set location for the series, the final tapestry will be woven at Tomas Ferguson’s – one of the last surviving linen mills in the country. A new section of tapestry will be revealed each week to coincide with the latest episode. Posts on social media by Tourism Ireland direct fans to the full tapestry hosted online as interactive content – always appreciated here at JBH. HBO’s Melting Ice Reveal HBO went all out this year, ramping up its GoT marketing activity to fever pitch. There were ‘winterizing’ social clues and games on Twitter, Google and Reddit, Snapchat filters and White Walkers scaring the bejeezus out of tourists at a number of British landmarks. And let’s not forget the ice. Back in March, the broadcaster put out a Facebook Live broadcast featuring a block of ice, which slowly melted away to reveal the season 7 premier date. Very slowly. Despite attracting 162,000 viewers, it lasted a whopping 69 minutes and was interrupted twice even then. KFC: ‘Lunchtime is Coming’ Capitalising on the run-up to Season 7, fast-food giant KFC had some fun with one beloved character. The advert ‘Lunchtime is Coming’ shows a KFC employee, played by actor Kristian Nairn in character as Hodor, waiting for a stream of overly eager patrons to storm the restaurant with their lunch orders. Overwhelmed by hearing the same “chicken and fries” order, Hodor keeps repeating the same phrase as he is wont to do. Eventually, in his flustered state, he gets confused and says “chicken and rice” instead, thus unveiling KFC’s new product. Duolingo High Valyrian Course Daenerys needs friends to speak High Valyrian with – it could be you! To coincide with the launch of Season 7, popular language-learning app Duolingo has launched a course in High Valyrian. Delivered in the same way as any other language course, the High Valyrian course teaches users the basics and nuances of the language spoken by Daenerys Targaryen in handy bitesize chunks. As the last of the Targaryens and the last living descendant of Old Valyria, Daenerys is the only character to use High Valyrian on the show – with other characters using regional, less formal dialects High Valyrian was developed by Game of Thrones language specialist David J. Peterson, with the grammar constructed around the two key phrases used in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series: “Valar Dohaeris” (“All men must serve”) and of course, “Valar Morghulis” (“All men must die”). Peterson also constructed the entire Dothraki language used in the show as well as a number of other key dialects. In the run-up to the course being made available on Duolingo, the app published a message from Peterson – simply, “Valyrio Māzis”. Translation? “Valyrian is coming.” Blinkbox’s 40-foot dragon skull Many dinosaur fossils have been found on Chartmouth beach over the years. Lying on the Jurassic Coast, the natural beauty of the area gives it the appearance of something straight out of Game of Thrones, which proved handy back in 2013 when a giant dragon skull washed up on the beach. Or did it? Nahhhh, the highly-realistic, 40-foot dragon skull was an impressive PR stunt from Blinkbox (now Talk Talk TV) to promote the third season of the show. The story got worldwide coverage – a simple idea, brilliantly executed. Viking ‘Spoiler Alert’ stickers   True to form, stationery company Viking came up with a practical, paper-based solution to a common office problem back in 2014. Picture the scene: you’re sitting at your desk, absent-mindedly entering gibberish on a spreadsheet, thinking about the lovely evening you have planned in front of the TV when the unthinkable happens. You overhear your colleagues talking about Robb Stark being stabbed to death by the Freys and the Boltons. But you’ve only just you’ve only just seen him crowned King in the North! Oh, the humanity. By allowing you to silently communicate exactly where you are in the series,  Viking’s “Spoiler Alert” stickers allow fans to keep their office spoiler-free. A light, funny idea that shows just how much one TV show is having an impact on everyday life. As GoT campaigns get ever more innovative – we look forward to see what brands will do with our favourite show next year for its eighth and final season. Lauren Harrison, Content Specialist and Copywriter, JBH Read more Stats, Facts & Future Trends Stats, Facts & Future Trends: July 2017 This month, we reveal the future of mobile video viewing, what brands should and shouldn’t do on social media, and why cause-related ads are on the rise. 5.5bn people will use mobile devices by 2022 Two-thirds (66%) of the world’s population, or more than 5.5bn people, are expected to be using mobile devices by 2022, according to a new global forecast. Based on a survey of more than 9,000 consumers, Forrester found that: The number of global smartphone subscribers is expected to reach 3.8bnin five years’ time, crossing the 50% mark for smartphone penetration by population in 2017. Globally, Android is expected to capture almost three-quarters (73%) of smartphone market share this year, amounting to 1.8bn users, followed by Apple (21%) and Windows (4%). Large-screen smartphones are also contributing to a decline in tablet users, with the total tablet base expected to decline from 615m in 2016 to 579m in 2022. While smartphones are still far and away the most popular mobile, more than 1bn subscribers are still expected to use feature phones in 2017. “Nokia relaunched the iconic feature phone 3310 to address this market in February 2016, targeting emerging markets like India,” the report noted. “We expect that by 2020 around 433m subscribers will still be using feature phones as their primary phone.” Source: Forrester For more information, click here. UK marketers lean towards short term Uncertain economic times are driving marketers to shift their spending into activation and digital advertising according to the latest IPA Bellwether Report. The report for Q2 2017, based on data drawn from a panel of 300 UK marketing professionals, showed that UK marketers have revised up their internet budgets to the greatest extent since Q3 2007. Other findings of the report include: The net balance of +22.7% was up sharply from the first quarter figure of +16.9%. Within internet marketing, search/SEO (+15.6%) and mobile (+3.0%) both continued to record upward revisions to budgets. The increase in internet budgets fuelled growth in overall marketing budgets, which registered a net balance of +13.1%. Reductions in budgets occurred in market research (-6.2%) and direct marketing (-4.7%). “The election result has thrown further uncertainty into an already volatile environment,” said Paul Bainsfair, Director General of the IPA. “For marketers, this has meant a desire, where possible, to seek out more activation-driven advertising. As evidenced strongly in this latest Bellwether Report, this has resulted in a further move towards advertising in the digital space.” Source: IPA Bellwether Report For more information, click here. Mobile devices lift online viewing by 20% Online video viewing around the world is expected to increase by 20% in 2017 and this in turn will drive up global video adspend, according to a new report by Zenith. The ROI agency’s Online Video Forecasts 2017 study also stated that: Global consumers will spend an average of 47.4 minutes a day watching videos online this year, up from 39.6 minutes in 2016. There is expected to be a 35% increase in viewing on mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) to 28.8 minutes a day. Mobile video viewing is expected to grow 25% in 2018 and 29% in 2019. Mobile devices will account for almost three-quarters (72%) of all online video viewing by 2019, up from 61% in 2017. In the UK, online video adspend is forecast to rise to £1.7bn. “Online video is one of the fastest-growing channels of advertising, triggering heavy demand from brands for high-quality content,” said Jonathan Barnard, Head of Forecasting and Director of Global Intelligence at Zenith. “Video platforms that can capture the attention of the most consumers with the best content will reap the highest rewards.” Source: Zenith For more information, click here. What brands should and shouldn’t do on social media Brands face a daily battle to stay relevant on social media and reach an increasingly demanding audience, so Sprout Social surveyed a number of US internet users in April 2017 to determine what they did and didn’t like. The social media analytics and monitoring service found that: Nearly seven in 10 internet users were annoyed when brands used slang on social media. More than four in 10 respondents (42%) said they found it annoying when brands used GIFs. More than seven in 10 respondents found it annoying when brands got political on social media. However, a large share (83%) of internet users found it cool when brands used video clips, while 83% also liked it when brands responded to their questions. Two-thirds of respondents also thought it was cool when brands joined conversations on social media and talked about timely events. Source: Sprout For more information, click here. Creative remains a challenge for mobile video A new study from YouAppi, a growth marketing platform for mobile brands, finds that when it comes to delivering effective mobile video, marketers face a few challenges. Among them are developing creative, as well as finding properties to effectively run mobile videos. The study found that: More than four in 10 (44%) of mobile marketers and agency professionals surveyed said that developing compelling creative was a hurdle they faced Nearly three in 10 (28%) said they don’t have enough funds in their budget to do what they need to do. One in five (21%) said they faced pressure to act too quickly before they had their strategy in order. However, despite the challenges, mobile video ad spending in the US will grow by double-digit rates through 2021. Similar to the YouAppi study, Teads found that amid the heightened interest in mobile video, marketers are still faced with challenges. Many respondents noted lack of premium inventory, consumers’ shortened attention span and ad fraud as some of the obstacles. Sources: YouAppi, eMarketer, Teads For more information, click here. Four family types determine household spending There are four distinct types of family in the UK whose purchase decisions and spending habits are influenced more by attitude than traditional demographic or financial models, according to new research from YouGov and creative communications agency Krow. As well as concluding that attitudes towards parenting and household management have a more important role than income, age or other factors, the study found that: The four family groups are described as “conscious nurturers” (32%), “control seekers” (28%), “practical planners” (25%) and “plate spinners” (14%). Conscious nurturers, who are typically more affluent than the other family groups, believe it’s very important for children’s development to be included in any purchase decision-making. Control seekers plan their spending in advance and believe that parents have a responsibility to make decisions on behalf of the whole household. Practical planners are more likely to keep to a strict budget compared to the other family groups, although they are open to different members of the household contributing to purchase decisions depending on their area of expertise. Finally, plate spinners are those families who are just about managing to pay their bills and, consequently, are less likely to experiment or stray from their regular purchase choices. “We thought money was going to be at the heart of people’s decision-making, but what actually came out was more their attitude towards how they want to run their lives, bring up their children and the relationships they want to have,” said Aileen Ross, Senior Planner at Krow. Sources: YouGov, Krow For more information, click here. Cause-related ads increase four-fold Purpose-driven ads are not only growing in number, but they generate more views and drive more results in the form of engagement rates, research shows. Drawing on YouTube data, video ad tech company Pixability found that: Cause-related ads among the Interbrand 2016 list of top 100 global brands had increased fourfold over the past five years. Some issues were more prominent than others, notably women’s empowerment, which accounted for 24% of purpose-driven videos. Other topics being addressed included community aid (17%), adversity (16%), sustainability (14%) and equality (10%). The average number of views for such purpose-driven videos was almost 1m more than for non-purpose ones. “When purpose-driven ads are done well, brands have the opportunity to not only stand for something they believe in, but also deeply connect with an audience,” said Bettina Hein, CEO of Pixability. “I believe this will become an increasingly important method to build brands at a time when people are increasingly choosing brands that align with their values.” Source: Pixability For more information, click here. Commissioned by The CMA Read more Month in Content Marketing: July 2017 Eurostar has a new content partner, size? unveils major multi-platform campaign and BA pilots love their magazine. Eurostar revamps content – chooses new agency after CMA-run competitive pitch – Eurostar is revamping and rationalising its approach to content after awarding a contract for maintaining its destination website and media sales activities to Cedar. The agency won the account following a competitive pitch launched through the Content Marketing Association’s CMA Advance programme. The new partnership will see a revamped a Metropolitan magazine for customers on board Eurostar trains as well ongoing video, editorial and photographic content every month across digital, print, social media and eCRM channels. In addition, Cedar-operated Eurostar Media will generate revenues by offering carefully selected brand advertisers a single media solution. The media portfolio will reach affluent and influential passengers across digital, ambient and print media, through on-board entertainment, and also through product placement opportunities in the lounges. The appointment is a major addition to Cedar’s travel content portfolio content, which has added six new international clients in the past year, while also winning three British Media Awards and nine International Content Marketing Awards. Together, the new content and media approach will bring to life Eurostar’s new ‘Travel State of Mind’ brand strategy, inspiring customers by introducing intriguing destination ideas, extraordinary connections and fresh perspectives to their journey. Guillemette Jacob, head of marketing at Eurostar, said, “Cedar really demonstrated a future-facing model for Eurostar’s content and media that will truly enhance the customer experience. It showed a great understanding of our vision to engage travellers in a consistent and meaningful way across all touchpoints, and we are extremely eager to start this journey with Cedar for the benefit of our passengers.” More here. size? debuts a campaign that looks at the influence of culture on style – size?, the global footwear and apparel retailer, has unveiled Spaces in-Between, a multi-platform campaign that focuses on the intersection between culture and style. The campaign will be delivered through premium magazines, a bold new website, and monthly podcasts, and is supported by cutting-edge videos, photography and illustrations from leading creatives such as Benedict Redgrove, Adam Cruft and Dan Emmerson. It will be helmed by TCO, the media company behind youth culture brand Huck and film brand Little White Lies. size? Marketing and Creative Manager Peter Kellett says: “Spaces In-Between is an opportunity to build brand loyalty through a stronger relationship with our consumers. It’s a place for us to not only champion and document culture, but also to influence it. TCO, through their title Huck, know how to talk credibly to an audience of millennial tastemakers. Their premium execution also aligns with our positioning.” Editorial direction for the campaign is being led by TCO’s Agency Editor, Michael Fordham, former features editor at Dazed and Confused. He adds: “Spaces In-Between is a colourful, celebratory documentation of culture – the stuff that draws us together rather than divides.” The first stories to feature include hip-hop heavyweight Talib Kweli; the youth pushing fashion from the block parties of Portland, Jamaica; the local pride of whippet racers in the North East of England; and the European football fixtures in the 1970s that led to the boom in British streetwear. Culture-clash aficionado Don Letts hosts ‘Join the Dots’, a series of podcasts uncovering people who are creating culture, on the ground. The first episode features South London rising artist ‘Cosima’. The 100-page magazines will be distributed for free in all size? stores and through Huck’s network of neighbourhood distributors, with further articles, videos and digital content available at More here. Civil service members magazine gets new publisher – Boundless, the magazine of the events and experiences club for the Civil Service and Public Sector, which has over 250,000 members and was founded in 1923 has a new publisher.  Immediate Media Co, the special interest, content and platform company, has won a three-year contract to produce the members’ magazine. Boundless is published six times a year and the 124-page magazine is mailed to all members, and covers UK and overseas holidays, cars and motorsport, family days out and stories from club members up and down the country. The win followed a competitive pitch process, and includes a programme of digital content for the Boundless website. The magazine will be created by Immediate Bristol-based Branded Content team, who already publish member communications for English Heritage, RSPB, WWF and the Scout Association. “We’re delighted to be working with Immediate on the next phase of our magazine and content programme,” said Boundless Marketing Director Shane Larkin. “Their experience of working with major membership organisations, as well as engaging special-interest audiences across print and digital, made them a great fit for Boundless. We look forward to working with Immediate to deliver great content to both existing and new members.” More here. The Environmentalist shifts to Redactive –  The IEMA’s monthly membership magazine, The Environmentalist, will now be published by CMA member Redactive. The move follows a competitive tender earlier in the year. IEMA (formerly the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment) is the worldwide alliance of environment and sustainability professionals. It has a global membership of 14,000 individuals who are responsible for the environmental, economic and social sustainability of their organisations. IEMA members are active in 65% of FTSE 100 companies. Redactive assumes responsibility for the multi-platform The Environmentalist magazine with immediate effect. In addition to publishing The Environmentalist in print 10 times a year, Redactive will also manage the magazine’s website and official jobs board – Of this new partnership Tim Balcon, IEMA’s CEO, says “our magazine is an important and highly valued element of IEMA membership, read by an alliance of thousands of environment and sustainability professionals worldwide. That is why we have been incredibly careful to select the right long-term publishing partner and we know that Redactive is the perfect choice to deliver and develop the title.” More here. BA pilots love their magazine – Good news for The British Airline Pilots’ Association (BALPA) and its publishing partner CPL. A members survey conducted by the organisation has resulted in some very positive feedback about its magazine, The Log. CPL won a competitive pitch last June to revamp the design of the quarterly title, which is written and edited by an in-house BALPA team. BALPA is the professional association and registered trade union established to represent the interests of 100,000 UK pilots. The Log reaches more than 85% of commercial pilots, as well as industry officials, international aviation bodies, other unions and MPs. Some of the objectives of the redesign and launch included to make navigation throughout the magazine easier and rework the way in which content is presented to make it a more engaging read. The members survey, completed last month, showed that 76% rated the new design as good or excellent and that over 20% of members are now reading more content than previously. More here. Also this month the CMA blog looked at the key content marketing trends for the rest of 2017, the growth of voice-based interfaces and how the iPhone has impacted on content marketing. Commissioned by The CMA Read more Newhall delighted to be working with British Cycling Newhall Publishing is delighted to be working alongside British Cycling to produce their Racing Calendar books. British Cycling is a membership organisation with over 136,000 paying members growing at a rate of 1,500 new members every month. With headquarters at the velodrome in Manchester, this world-leading organisation oversees the six disciplines of the sport (BMX, mountain bike, cyclo-cross, road, track and cycle speedway), from providing the support and encouragement to get people riding their bikes for the first time, right through to being the home of the hugely successful Great Britain Cycling Team. The Racing Calendar books are produced both digitally and in print three times a year (January, June and September) and are the ultimate reference guide for the committed cyclist to source information about national and regional cycling events. Each edition is available to Gold members and contains the racing calendar of events subdivided into British Cycling’s racing disciplines, along with extensive and valuable information for the readership covering the length and breadth of the UK.  Newhall are also working with Upper Street Events on the media sales and marketing side of the books. “We are extremely excited to be producing the Racing Calendar books for British Cycling – cycling is one of the fastest growing sports in the country and British Cycling plays an integral part in this. We look forward to working alongside British Cycling to create publications which reflect their values as an organisation and provide excellent value to their ever-growing membership base.” Gerallt Davies – BDM, Newhall Publishing Read more Eurostar appoints Cedar as its content and media sales partner Eurostar has appointed Cedar to bring its destination content and media sales activities under one agency roof for the first time in the brand’s history. The account was awarded after a competitive pitch launched through the Content Marketing Association’s CMA Advance programme. The brief will see Eurostar and Cedar engaging customers with hundreds of pieces of inspiring video, editorial and photographic content every month across digital, print, social media and eCRM channels. They will also introduce customers to a new-look Metropolitan magazine on board next year, reaching 833k passengers every month across 14 European destinations. In addition, Cedar-operated Eurostar Media will generate revenues by offering carefully selected brand advertisers a single media solution. The media portfolio will reach affluent and influential passengers across digital, ambient and print media, through on-board entertainment, and also through product placement opportunities in the lounges. The appointment is a major addition to Cedar’s travel content portfolio content, which has added six new international clients in the past year, while also winning three British Media Awards and nine International Content Marketing Awards. Together, the new content and media approach will bring to life Eurostar’s new ‘Travel State of Mind’ brand strategy, inspiring customers by introducing intriguing destination ideas, extraordinary connections and fresh perspectives to their journey. Guillemette Jacob, head of marketing at Eurostar, said, “Cedar really demonstrated a future-facing model for Eurostar’s content and media that will truly enhance the customer experience. It showed a great understanding of our vision to engage travellers in a consistent and meaningful way across all touchpoints, and we are extremely eager to start this journey with Cedar for the benefit of our passengers.” Clare Broadbent, CEO of Cedar, said, “Eurostar is ready for a next-generation content and media sales approach, and we are absolutely delighted it chose us to partner with it on this journey. Together we will create a content and media portfolio that truly inspires a ‘Travel State of Mind’.” Cedar won the business after a competitive pitch which originally went out to Content Marketing Association members through CMA Advance, the body’s pitch brief service. Read more Read More News Articles »
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