Reflections on the 2nd Annual Content Market Retreat

As the 2nd Annual Content Marketing Retreat unfolded, the Langley Center for New Media was like a petri dish for best practices, thought leadership, and revolutionary ideas for content marketing. I was honored to be a speaker (and Manticore Technology a sponsor), joining experts from across the U.S. to present on current issues surrounding content marketing and share case studies and tips on how to maximize various aspects of a successful content marketing campaign. The experience was very enlightening. Personally, I acquired enough knowledge on these two days to fill a book (now there's a content marketing idea), and I wanted to take a minute to share a few key ideas from the retreat that had the biggest impact on me as a B2B marketing entrepreneur.

  • Tell stories. Story telling not only creates engaging content, but stories help build rapport with your audience. It is important when building a content marketing campaign to define and construct the story you wish to tell. Your story should create an emotional connection with your audience that turns leads into customers.
  • Content curation is an art form.  You don't always have to create original content to be an effective content marketer.  As a curator, your goal is to precisely select the best content to support a story that is meaningful for your audience. Adding to the conversation by collecting the right content is like being a museum curator; you're helping find relevant content your audience wants to see. 
  • Content turns customers into advocates.  When your not in the room and someone says something bad about you, will your friends defend you?  If you're a company and the room is the Web, who will come to your defense?  Engaging your customers with good content that delivers on your brand promise will turn them into advocates - and your defenders when you're not in the room.
  • Speak to your audience's "wants" not just their "needs". As marketers, we're trained to tell our prospects what and why they need our product.  As Rod Brooks, CMO of Pemco Insurance stated, "People need insurance, it doesn't mean they want to talk about it."  To fully engage your audience, make sure your content talks to their wants, not just their needs.
  • Marketers must become publishers. Content marketing requires a steady flow of quality content to be effective.  As such, marketers must adopt content creation, editing and production processes that mimic publishers' processes.  Even more important, marketers must tell compelling stories and really understand what their audiences want to read in order to be effective.

The 2nd Annual Content Marketing Retreat was a huge success and an exceptional two days of idea sharing and industry best practices for content marketing.  Read more from the speakers at the Content Marketing Retreat here.

Read more about the Content Marketing Retreat here.