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What Makes a Content Marketing Strategy Successful AND Fun?

Josh the clown.jpg

Do you like clowns? I do. Truth be told, I work with a guy (above) who’s worked on the side as a birthday clown.

You know what that clown says to me? He says I’m the real clown. He says it’d be “fascinating” to monitor my brainwaves, to know which areas of my wonky cerebrum spark as I’m channeling the characters of Family Guy or carrying on conversations as former President Obama.

Naturally, I’m looking for humor at Inbound 2017, my first marketing conference, Sept. 25-28 in Boston. But while satisfying my insatiable appetite for laughter, I also really want to learn.

My eyes are wide open heading into what’s sure to be one big, formative, educational party with friends and peers. (Side note: It’ll be a special treat to see my pal/boss Josh Curcio in a panel discussion on HubSpot Partner Day. Pay attention to his sales expertise.)

Here are 3 breakout sessions I’m most looking forward to as I look to build a successful AND fun content marketing strategy. 

Greg Roth1. Understanding and Using Humor in Marketing

Speaker: Greg Roth - Idea Enthusiast at GRcreative

Time: Tuesday, Sept. 26, 4:15 PM - 5:00 PM

What is humor but personality at its loosest and most creative? When it comes to building your brand (whether you’re B2B, B2C, or something I’ve never heard of) it could be your strongest bet for becoming unforgettable.

But that’s just what it is - a bet. That strategy could just as easily slip on its own banana peel - and, no, there won’t be any funny sound effects or “Funny Fails” YouTube videos.

Find that balance between inappropriately hilarious and appropriately zany. You might just craft the next great campaign that’ll forever stick in people’s minds like Old Spice, Doritos, or Dollar Shave Club.

Greg’s title says it all: Idea Enthusiast. You can’t help but have enthusiasm about a guy who peddles enthusiastic ideas. If you’re not enthusiastic about your content marketing strategy, why should your consumers be?

Session Description:

“About one-third of all ads globally use humor to convey their message. Despite bountiful research that humor increases connection and engagement, is not exclusive to huge budgets, and is used successfully in virtually any industry, many brands and organizations shy away from even considering the idea. So how do you do it? What works and what doesn't? Is the risk worth it? This session breaks down humor archetypes and offers easy-to-understand frameworks to use effectively (and wisely).”

2. Content Strategies for a Post-Truth EraLiz O'Donnell

Speaker: Liz O’Donnell - Chief Content Officer at Double Forte

Time: Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2:15 PM - 3:00 PM

As a former print and digital journalist, I’m befuddled by this damned post-truth era and “fake news.” North is south, west is Miley Cyrus. Reality, or the lack thereof, is comical in a “crazy pills” kind of way.

Becoming a thought leader in your industry has never been more challenging, with so many people freely wheeling and dealing digital content. The trick is producing content so great that people won’t dismiss it or gloss it over.

Liz, an award-winning blogger and content strategy guru, will explain how to leverage saturated social media channels to enhance your brand. A majority of our B2B clients reside in the manufacturing realm. Social publishing is key to their respective strategies as a cost-effective avenue for leads by:

  • Drawing engagement with their own content
  • Promoting consistent and relevant third-party content
  • Compelling followers to take action

Session Description:

“We know we live in a world where social media has made sharing information easier than ever before. Virality is attainable. We know the proliferation of fake stories and fake news sites are at an all time high. We also know social sharers are not terribly discerning. 59% of links shared on social media have never been clicked. There is power in creating and sharing content. How do marketers use that sharing for good?”

3. Turning a Day-to-Day Product Into an Exciting Storytelling MovementHugo Pereira

Speaker: Hugo Pereira - Marketing & Growth Director at EV-Box

Time: Tuesday, Sept. 26, 11:45 AM - 12:30 PM

Sometimes, it’s not sexy. B2B clients for whom I regularly produce content typically don’t manufacture the kinds of things that’ll turn heads.

But there’s still a way to make these companies sing.

It takes some creativity and, in some cases, some major surgery to overhaul the current content marketing strategy. Overall, your content should:

Session Description:

“Everyone is focused on hacks. Either growth hacks, leadership hacks, culture hacks. Reality is that building a successful and lasting company requires more than hacks. By joining this session you'll hear the story of EV-Box, how the organization turn a day-to-day (perhaps even boring) hardware product into an exciting storytelling and empowering movement within its team members, partners, customers and overall audience.”

Content Marketing Strategy Lessons at Inbound 2017

There are 209 more sessions on tap, and it’s not too late to register. Certainly, each will offer some value, no matter if you’re a beginner, a content marketing guru, digital salesman, or an agency leader.

Michelle Obama will also be at Inbound 2017 for inspiration. Maybe I can meet her to thrill her with my impression of her husband.
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