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Tracy LewisSeptember 16, 20112 min read

Lessons from Content Marketing World 2011

Content Marketing World 2011The inaugural Content Marketing World event was held in Cleveland last week, gathering more than 600 marketers just blocks from our downtown office.

From the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame opening reception to Kevin Smith’s (@ThatKevinSmith) closing keynote, it was an all-around rocking event. Special thanks to Joe Pulizzi (@juntajoe) for a job well done!

Key Content Marketing Takeaways

Below are key content marketing takeaways from the PR 20/20 team members in attendance:

Paul Roetzer: In his comedy show, Kevin Smith said, "You can't fail at self expression.” I think this is a great message for people to take chances with their content. Stop worrying about what other people think, or whether they approve of what you do.

Christina Capadona Schmitz: Design and presentation of your content matters. It doesn’t have to be the most crazy and expensive design work, but it does need to be professional, clean and creative. Another key message was that real-time marketing must be combined with a plan, and vice versa. You’ll achieve the most success when the two are coupled.

Laurel Miltner: Ardath Albee (@ardath421) discussed the importance of developing content that improves the buyer experience. After bringing people in, marketers need to 1) deliver on promises by making sure that content addresses the issues it is optimized around, and 2) use content to answer key questions that prospects tend to have at different points in the decision-making process. This is particularly crucial in complex industries with longer sales cycles.

Christy Barksdale: As explained by Rob Pasquinucci (@pasquinucr1), content marketing that leverages internal audiences is just as important as that which reaches external audiences. Using tactics such as sharing customer stories and interviews with company executives helps to build brand consistency and develop brand advocates.

Laura Pinter: “You are what you publish," as said by David Meerman Scott (@dmscott). If you publish intelligent, thought-provoking pieces, chances are that's how people will view you. Don’t be the person that pushes out random nonsense, just to publish something.

Me (Tracy DiMarino): I loved how Regina Brett (@ReginaBrett) advocated for using rich descriptions and details in your writing to make it more appealing to readers. When writing, tap into all the readers' senses—sight, smell, touch and hearing—to draw them into the story with words. For example, use "ragged Bible with Scotch tape to keep Corinthians from falling out" instead of "worn Bible."

Your Thoughts?

What were your favorite content marketing lessons? Post them in the comments section below.

Image Note: Paul moderating a panel at Content Marketing World 2011.

Tracy DiMarino is a consultant at PR 20/20, a Cleveland-based inbound marketing agency and PR firm. Follow Tracy on Twitter @Tracy_J_Lewis.

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Tracy Lewis

Tracy Lewis is the director of talent and a senior consultant at PR 20/20. She is also the community manager for Marketing Agency Insider. She joined the agency in March 2009 after graduating from Ohio University. Full bio.