Content conversation with TARA MARSH - Global head of content, wunderman

Q What is the most important pre-requisite for starting content marketing?
A The most important starting point is knowing what you are trying to achieve – this is the starting point for any kind of marketing. What is your business objective, who is your audience, what do they need, what does your brand stand for? With those building blocks, you can build your content strategy. Most important is to know what you are trying to do with your content. How will your content provide value? At Wunderman we use a framework we call the ‘content currencies’ that books at all the ways a brand can provide value through content. Once you have your strategy you can determine the best approach for executing against it – both the creation and distribution of content.

Q What is stopping brands from doing good content work?
A As is so often the case, budget is always an issue. More specifically, content production is always a big challenge – how do you feed the content beast that demands ever-increasing volumes of content that is fast and cheap and high production value? Not easy! My advice for brands facing this challenge is to consider all the content sources available to them – they may have more than they realise if they do a thorough content audit, and they can leverage UGC and other existing content (e.g. licensed content). You don’t have to create everything from scratch and indeed you may not want to, even if you could.

Q How would new technologies like VR & AI impact content marketing?
A These new technologies impact the delivery content, but not the strategy behind what value you are providing with your content. If you were seeking to educate your audience, VR or AR would be a consideration for delivering that education in a very immersive way. Use of AI would give you much efficiency and allow you to learn from the way in which your audience interacts with your content. For most brands, the easiest first step into AI is to explore the use of chat bots. recommend all brands look at how AI can best be applied to their business – far beyond content marketing.

Q One advice you would like to give to anyone starting content marketing?
A Know what it is you are trying to do. Don’t create content for the sake of creating content. And don’t recreate the wheel – there is a lot of content out there. Be thoughtful about what content you are best placed to provide because of your unique brand positioning.

Q How do you see brands using Content Marketing in the next 1 year?
A The use of content marketing is only going to increase. As people increasingly skip, block, avoid and simply ignore advertising, brands need to find a different way to engage. The best way to do that is by actually providing something valuable to your audience, in exchange for their attention – which is at the heart of content marketing.

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