Content Marketing – The Human Face of Your Business

The Content Marketing Academy 2016

Content Marketing - The Human Face of Business

Last week, 2 – 3 June 2016, I went to Edinburgh to my first Content Marketing Academy Conference.  If you look at the website it says:

“The Day My Business Changed Forever”.  

Quite a bold statement!  But mine will!  I know it will – and that’s because there are so many parallels with what I do.  If you read my blogs, Linked In Pulse Articles, or attend my programmes you’ll know I work a lot with Trust and Authenticity.  My top takeaways from the 2 day conference all relate to establishing trust and relating to our audience. 

For me content marketing and leadership / teamwork are inextricably linked.  So when I take the Content Marketing Academys “The day my business changed forever” I mean not only how I do business, relate to clients, grow my business etcetera, but it’s given me a whole new range of programmes to develop – watch this space!  There may even be a book in it!

Keynote speakers were:

Consistently their message was all about building relationships, developing trust and sharing knowledge.  Mark Schaefer said:

Be more human – being human brings trust and trust is your best App.

My “Being Human” Takeaways

Amy Schmittaur is “Savvy Sexy Social”.  She makes videos.  Check out her YouTube channel.  She talked to conference delegates Content Marketing - Your Human Faceabout making the personal connection with your audience or potential clients.  She talked about making people feel that they are in the room with you and making an emotional connection.  For me it’s all about being ourselves – showcasing our true selves.  That way our clients can self select.  By being authentic we are able to be honest with ourselves and those around us and that’s what builds trust.  We establish rapport because people trust there is no hidden agenda or political game playing.  This is true of leadership and teamwork – see the connection between content marketing and people development?

Pete Matthew is the “Meaningful Money” money podcast expert. He told us:

Make a difference in someone elses’ world and it will come back to you in spades

How can we make a difference? By providing:

  • direction
  • humour
  • a sense of community
  • clarity in confusion
  • a sense of safety
  • instruction
  • motivation
  • education.

Sound like a leader to you?  It does to me! 

Pete is an IFA – Independent Financial Advisor.  He started doing podcasts and videos to make life simpler for people wanting to invest their money.  His motivation and purpose was to help people and to add value in a difficult marketplace.

His closing message to the the audience was:

Don’t be vanilla, change peoples lives

For me Pete works in a technical area.  He could have operated in the same way as all other IFAs, but he chose to educate, and through his podcasts and website, he empowered people to make their own informed choices and decisions.  Something we should all be doing as leaders, executive directors, and board members – investing in our people, giving them the confidence to grow.

Ann Handley, ‎Author of “Everybody Writes” and “Content Rules,” Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs.  Her presentation focused on establishing your “tone of voice” whether that’s your website, blogs, videos, or social media, as a differentiator.  Your tone of voice reflects your culture and values.

Culture x Story x Empathy = Tone of Voice

Sound like organisation development to you?  It does to me!

Being explicit about your culture and values in an organisation is your differentiator for customers, services, and business strategy.  This in turn helps prospective employees, customers, or clients to self select.  For me developing a tone of voice, in leadership is about being self aware and establishing trust through authenticity.  Be authentic – be human – a key message in content marketing and in developing organisations.

Content Marketing - The Human Face of your Business

Mark W Schaeffer, Social Media Marketing Strategy Consultant, and Serial Author, told the Content Marketing Academy audience:

the act of sharing creates advocacy. 

He talked about building an audience who is emotionally connected to your business.  He also told us you can’t trick people into sharing your content.  People buy into you, your brand, your tone of voice and that has to be consistent and congruent with what you’re selling and stand for in your business.  

People are savvy.  It doesn’t take long to realise that they are being fooled by a leader or colleague.  We all leak – whether it’s under pressure, with certain types of people, in the presence of influential decision-makers, if you’ve not been yourself with the team or the people you spend longest with, they’re sure as hell going to detect the real you when you leak through your body language, behaviour, or tone.  It is so important to be self aware, continuously seek personal development and mentoring so you can be yourself.  That way those around you buy into you, have an emotional investment in you and a sense of collective success.  Like Mark says:

being human brings trust.

Making the link between Content Marketing and Authentic Leadership? – I am!

This article has been my reflections on what I gained from TCMA 2016 and the links I made to my work.  If you’re reading this as an attendee of the conference I hope it’s jogged your memory.  If you’re interested in growing your business I hope it’s stimulated your interest in content marketing, and if I’ve made a connection with you regarding engaging with colleagues, teams or developing the business through your people, then give me a call.  Keep checking twitter, linked in and the website as I’m developing the links with content marketing further.


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