What Does Mercury Retrograde Have to Do With the AWS Summit?

In New York this Thursday I’ll be attending my third AWS Summit in that city. I’m not sure about you but for me, when an annual professional event approaches, I often reflect on how much I’ve matured professionally or in a particular role since the last event, and the one before that, etc. In 2017, I had just recently moved back to New Jersey from Israel, and at the same time had begun transitioning from being responsible for the company’s editorial team to cultivating new business and strategic partnerships in the U.S.

For those of you who have been in the same industry forever — especially if you are a tech professional — it may be difficult to recall what it’s like to walk into a large event where everyone seems to know each other or at least speak the same jargon, and you don’t.

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5 Key Considerations for Building an Authentic Content Plan

Back in 2017, John Collins, Director of Content at Intercom hit the nail on the head in terms of the need for dropping the “marketing” from content marketing and focusing instead on creating valuable content.

While I agree with this, I want to suggest there’s an additional important component: creating a proper long-term plan to deliver such content. Coming up with a single brilliant white paper or three engaging blog posts isn’t going to deliver the desired results (consistent and reliable growth along all your online marketing KPIs.) However, committing to a strict plan and a long-term editorial calendar with quarterly goals and an annual investment will.

Recently, PwC’s 2018 Global Consumer Insights Survey highlighted the need for brands to prioritize trust and authenticity.

“Brands have to think about what’s the way for them to engage so that they come off as being authentic and caring.” Rick Kauffield, Principal, PwC US

Of course, that speaks to the need for meaningful, high-quality content, as Collins assessed, but without consistency, how will your audience (aka your customers) be able to ongoingly rely on your brand? With the right plan in place and an internal commitment to maintaining it, your organization can project these values and connect to users who will become long-term customers.

But how do you go about creating a great long-term content plan? Here are some tips to consider. All are critical even though they are in numerical order.

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The Subject Matter Expert (SME) Content Paradox and Pulling Teeth

When it comes to creating quality content assets for high-tech companies at scale, we have noticed the following paradox in the marketplace:

  • Writers know how to write but they don’t have hands-on, intimate knowledge of the technology.
  • The SME live and breathe the technology, but they don’t know how to effectively and engagingly write about it.

Of course there are exceptional individuals who are both knowledgeable and good writers but, let’s face it, they are few and far between—and, if you find one, worth his weight in gold.

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The Secret Sauce of Tech-related Blog Content

By Tina Ornstein, IOD Editor
Blogging on technical topics for a knowledgeable audience is a little bit like tightrope walking — it requires incredible balancing skills and one false step sends you plummeting into oblivion. In other words, if you don’t find the right balance between technical expertise and audience engagement, then your blog will be ignored (which is the equivalent of oblivion in the content world.)
At IOD, we have developed and perfected our own secret sauce for helping our customers reach their target audiences. Our methodology is based on one simple mantra: “writers are not experts and experts are not writers.” Thus a successful technical blog, (i.e., a blog that gets traction with its target audience) requires the collaboration of an expert and a content person — either a writer or a proactive editor.
Although chefs tend to guard their secret sauces carefully, we at IOD believe in transparency and are happy to share with you the key ingredients of ours.

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