Andrew Davis is a best-selling author and busy marketing speaker, and "The Agency Edge," his workshop at CMWorld this year, was nothing short of dynamic, educational and inspirational.
What's "the big idea "and why is it important for companies to have one in order to effectively reach their audience?
The Big Idea is making a commitment to owning an audience instead of creating campaigns with short lives and rented audiences. When you (and your company) make a commitment to enhancing the lives of a specific audience you serve you end up increasing demand for the products and services you sell.
For example: If I wanted to sell more potatoes and Zucchinis, I'd actually focus on getting more people committed to making vegetables fun. And I'd help sell, promote, and create content about this thing: the Spiralizer... Make sense?
How can companies produce good content without contributing to the content overload that's currently happening online?
The key here is to focus on building relationships with a valuable audience. You want to create content that fits into the information your audience WANTS to consume on a regular basis. You need to create valuable content. Content so good they would pay for it (but don't have to). That means you need to do three things:
1) You need to treat your content like a product. Brand it. Promote it. Make it unique.
2) You need to set an expectation with your audience and then deliver on it. How often will you distribute the content? What medium will you use to distribute that content? What time of the day will they consume the content.
And 3) You need to invite them to subscribe. You want to build an ever-growing audience with a low opt-out rate.
If you do these three things you'll build trust with your audience. Trust builds relationships and relationships drive revenue.
What does 'brand' mean to you, and why is it important for even small businesses to think of themselves as brands?
To me, a brand is an indelible mark in my mind when I think of a specific need. I think in today's content-saturated world it's more important than ever to think of yourself as owning a piece of your consumer's mind for three reasons:
1) As soon as a need is triggered in the mind of the consumer, you want your brand to be the answer. That means you need to have a relationship with your audience BEFORE they need you, or even SO they need you.
2) In today's online universe your brand is the sum of the employees, partners, vendors, clients, and customers your serve - because everyone has an audience. Which means, the more consistent you are in communicating how you add value to their lives the more business you'll win.
And 3) Creating content brands (or treating your content like a product) enables you to turn your marketing expenses into assets. They open up new business opportunities and partnerships never-before-possible. What indelible imprint are you making on the minds of the customers you serve?
Who are your biggest Content Marketing influencers?
Whoa... I'd say Jay Baer, Robert Rose, Joe Pulizzi, Ann Handley and Julie Fleischer (Kraft).
In five words or less, what is Content Marketing?
Leveraging stories that inspire action.
Andrew Davis is a marketing speaker and the best-selling author of Brandscaping: Unleashing the Power of Partnerships. A co-founder of Tippingpoint Labs (a digital marketing and advertising agency), he also acted as Chief Strategy Office for 10 years before selling the company and forging ahead as a full-time author and speaker. His marketing work has been tapped by Fortune 500 brands for its creative and innovative style.