As I squeezed into a sweltering room outside Old Street tube station yesterday, I wasn’t sure what to expect (particularly as I’m still relatively new to this industry).

I have to say I wasn’t disappointed. With events like this there is always going to be an element of self-promotion, but between all that there were some great tips on content marketing that I’m going to share with you in this post.

Create a mix of big and fast content

Google sent along a guy whose job it is to create content for Premier League football clubs, which, if I knew anything about football, would almost certainly make me really jealous of him.

The way Youtube handles its football content creation is split two ways: Regular content that can be planned and published in a day, and, less regularly, bigger pieces that require greater investment.

The tweet below is a great example of the former method. Using Google’s search data, YouTube can see what is trending that day and create bite-sized pieces of content for players to share on Twitter.

In this example, YouTube created an image of Wayne Rooney with a related fact around search data for him, and Rooney Tweeted it out to his followers with a chance to win a signed copy. 

The other strand of Youtube’s football content creation is the bigger moments. The stuff that gets all that lovely media attention and keeps the fans excited. 

The below example is based on the idea that the majority of Man United fans will never be able to make it to Old Trafford (what with many of them being based abroad).

Those fans were offered the chance to actually experience a live game.

They did this via Google+ Hangouts, enabling people to film themselves and be broadcast live through the LED advertising boards during the match, effectively giving them virtual ‘front row’ seats.

Don’t force your message

Any piece of content has to have a message. Otherwise, what’s the point? But it is important to get that message across without being too blatant and making people switch off. 

Smart Energy GB showed a great example of this with its content campaign around the idea that people would no longer have to estimate their monthly energy bills if they used its product. 

The first piece of the campaign was for April Fool’s Day, creating a fictional ‘Office for Estimation’ and persuading the Mirror to release a false article on 1st April claiming the votes for the General Election would be estimated.

They followed it up with this ‘interview,’ again in partnership with the Mirror, with the Office for Estimation’s Director General.

Finally, they filmed a hidden camera sketch set in  a North London supermarket, where customers were told the price of their shopping would be estimated when they got to the till. 

As you can see from the above three videos, the message is very much present in all of them (some things work better when they’re not estimated), but it’s presented in a fun, engaging way without blatantly saying 'our product is amazing and will change your life'.

Think about demographics in detail

Another great tip from the day was to always think deeply about demographics.

I’m sure most marketers already know this, but perhaps not everyone puts it into practice as effectively as they could. 

A slightly silly example (but one which I happen to quite like) given on the day was the below comparison of two well-known ‘princes.’

  • Both born in 1948
  • Both married with children
  • Both worth around £200m
  • Both enjoy skiing in the French Alps
  • Both like sports cars

On paper, these two individuals have a lot of similarities from a marketing point of view, but it is safe to say the way you would approach the Prince of Wales vs. the Prince of Darkness would differ somewhat. 

The point is this: there is an exponentially increasing amount of data on consumers these days, which means a huge number of opportunities for targeting that goes beyond simplistic stats. 

Conclusion: content needs to be both faster and better

The theme of this session was ‘faster vs. better,’ but the general view of the speakers, and the audience, seemed to be the same:

It isn’t a question of whether content needs to be delivered faster. Faster is happening already, and brands don’t really have a choice about keeping up. It is a question of how you deliver good content faster.

Jack Simpson

Published 17 June, 2015 by Jack Simpson

Jack Simpson is a Writer at Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.

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