Matter Of Form were delighted to host an event on “Content Driven Commerce – Creating and planning a content strategy that works to sell”, on Tuesday 12th September at the Hamyard Hotel in London as part of MOF’s Retail Therapy series.
The event involved a talk by Suzie Ryan, MOF Content Strategist, followed by a lively Q&A session. It was well attended by a range of industry professionals from brands such as Yolke,
The Rug Company, Smythson, Neals Yard, Liberty London, Jenny Packham, Aquascutum and
Alex and Alexa.
Here are our ten key takeaways from the event:
- The key client concern shared by nearly all clients, not surprisingly, was making
content ‘shoppable’. A content strategy has to be commercial. After Angela
Ahrendts had allocated 60% of Burberry’s marketing budget in her digital strategy in
in 2006, the sales tripled in the following five years. One of the success factors in her
strategy was thoroughly connecting the products to high-quality pieces of content.
- The second key concern was internationalisation. Terminology and key search
terms in the UK are very often completely alien when used in the US, and vica-versa.
This can get even more complex when taken to territories such as Japan, where
colour of artwork and imagery has very different connotations compared to the UK.
- Brand book and tone of voice need to be locked down and documented. Everyone
knows they need a brand book and a tone of voice, but the brand book of the future
will be smaller and far more flexible to enable content to be produced in a fast
moving multichannel environment.
- Take risks. With a confident tone of voice and brand book there is no excuse to not
take risks and stand out from the competition, even after a little bit of testing and
learning. The Harvey Nichols 100-year- old model campaign was one of the highlights
of Suzie’s career, and involved exceptional creative risk taking rather than huge
- Do personas, keep them simple, and then do not lock them away in a cupboard
never to be referred to again. They are essential to allow us to develop a perspective
on what is important not just to the brand, but to the user too.
- Teams working in silos are one of the main reasons brands fail at content. A
centralised activity calendar is key in aligning teams.
- Another key failing is not sweating content. You have to make your content work as
hard as you can and promote it across channels. It is amazing how often a
piece of content gets produced by one department and then used only once, when it
can be used many times as part of a focussed program of activity.
- The best £500 anyone can spend from the content budget is on a day long SEO
course. Not having to rely on an SEO or Data consultant for everything is a big win in
an environment where success is 100% measurable.
- Social shares are as important a measure of success as any – there is no greater
proof of user engagement and hence successful content.
- ‘Hygiene’ content often gets overlooked – and yet this can be some of the most fun
content to work with. The ability to surprise and delight exists in countless areas. An
example was given of the luxury firm that added “Duke, Duchess, Earl, Countess” to the form fields in a ‘My Account’ section – a small but impactful endeavour.
Also published on Medium.