Content is king (so don't let it die on the toilet) | Catherine Toole's speech 2013 | Sticky Content


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Kings don't have a great history. They get overthrown. Beheaded. Or die on the toilet clutching a burger.

Planning and delivering strategic, targeted, on-brand content customers love isn't easy. You don't inherit that kingdom overnight. You have to conquer it battle by battle.

So what are the key kingmaker behaviours? Are there tricks to ruling your content, subduing stakeholders and securing prosperity for all? Using practical examples and stories, Sticky Content’s Catherine Toole shares the crown jewels of content tactics.

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Content is king (so don't let it die on the toilet) | Catherine Toole's speech 2013 | Sticky Content

  1. 1. Content is king (so don’t let it die on the toilet) @catherinetoole @stickycontent
  2. 2. In my career, I found that the best people are the ones that really understand the content. And they’re a pain in the butt to manage! But you put up with it because they’re so great at the content. Steve Jobs (1955-2011)
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  4. 4. “Biggest challenge? People just don’t get what it is…” 7
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  8. 8. 5 kingmaker tactics to take home
  9. 9. This month we’re working with…
  10. 10. “At the very least, have a statement of intent for every content item you produce...”
  11. 11. 2. Become loved by the people
  12. 12. 18 An extract from the foreword to Content Strategy for the Web (2nd Edition) by Kristina Halvorson & Melissa Rach by Sarah Cancilla, Facebook’s first content strategist.
  13. 13. Sarah Cancilla’s top tips 19 Extract from the foreword of Content Strategy for the Web (2nd Edition)
  14. 14. 3. Have the common touch
  15. 15. ‘No institution can possibly survive if it needs geniuses or supermen to manage it. It must be organised in such a way as to be able to get along under a leadership composed of average human beings.’ Peter Drucker
  16. 16. Winter walks in the UK: top 10 trails Hiking in the UK can be a rewarding, exciting activity for people of all ages and levels of experience. Mountain Warehouse has compiled a list of the top ten hikes to be found in diverse areas of the country, all for your walking pleasure. And when you’ve picked your hike, head to our Walking section and pick up all the gear you’ll need. 1. Tackle one of Yorkshire’s Three Peaks – Yorkshire Moors If you love to hike, but secretly fancy yourself as a bit of a climber, get up close and personal with the Pen-y-Ghent. Prepare yourself for an exhausting climb that offers fantastic views and an exhilarating descent. At the bottom you’ll find a gaping hole that extends two hundred feet down into an underground river. 2. Hike to a medieval tower – Glastonbury, Somerset Not just the home of loud guitars and hippies, Glastonbury is actually one of the most mystical places in England, with holy wells and crumbling towers steeping the landscape in history. Start at the Chalice Well, and take the path to the top of Glastonbury Tor and its medieval tower. 3. Take on Striding Edge – Lake District Like a little terror with your trekking? Striding Edge is a notoriously precarious walk, and only for the hardiest of hearts (and most dedicated of mountain lions). This is a winding, narrow path that leads up from Red Tarn to the summit of Helvellyn, in the Lake District. 4. Journey along the Coast to Coast – Lake District to Robin Hoods Bay England's classic "Coast-to-Coast" walk is thought of by some as one of the top ten hikes in the world. It traverses a long distance, from the Irish Sea to the North Sea, snaking through three national parks: the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the beautiful plains of the North Yorkshire Moors. 5. Challenge yourself on England’s longest hike – Somerset to Dorset The longest of the long England hikes has got to be the South-West Coast Path – at 630 miles. It will send you soaring to the heavens then plunging to sea level in the blink of an eye. You can also expect sleepy fishing towns, bleak, antiquated landscapes and sandy beaches with dramatic waves. 6. Walk along Hadrian’s Wall – Solwat Firth to the Tyne River Built in 122AD to mark the northernmost outpost of the Roman Empire, Hadrian’s Wall provides a historically rich spine from which numerous different routes begin. Both scenically stimulating and an authentically educational experience, choose your route and go accompanied by one of the most impressive examples of ancient engineering known to the modern world. 7. Climb to the top of Ben Nevis – Fort William, Scotland The hike up to the UK’s highest mountain is perhaps one for more experienced hikers, as it is not without its dangers. The summit is 1,344m up, so leave plenty of time for your ascent. The panoramic splendour of the view at the top is worth every trudging footprint.
  17. 17. 8. See prehistoric rocks on the Malvern Hills – Worcestershire and Herefordshire A miniature mountain range, these hills contain some of the oldest rocks in Britain at 650 million years old. Prehistoric, challenging and steeped in history – what’s not to love? If you want to experience the thrill of mountain climbing without the terrifying altitude, the Malvern Hills is the place for you. 9. Walk along the white cliffs of Dover – Dover, Sussex Discover the world famous white cliffs with this steep and dramatic walk. The legendary coastal path offers unparalleled views of the English Channel and France. Other sights include the crumbling remains of a military prison and an abundance of rare plants and wildlife 10. Hike to the top of Sugar Loaf – Brecon Beacons, Wales This rocky – and sometimes treacherous – walk leads to the 600m high Sugar Loaf, one of the most popular landmarks in Wales. Its highest point is a winding ridge that offers great views of the Bristol Channel and the Malvern Hills. It can be dangerous, but as long as you come prepared hiking at the Brecon Beacons should be a breeze. Found a hike that excites you? Pick up all the equipment and clothing you’ll need in our Walking section.
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  24. 24. “We have a really hard time separating content from form. We have a really hard time imagining what something says, what its words are, might be disconnected from how it looks — or more important that if you are thinking about multi-channel publishing, how it looks might need to be different for every platform.” Karen McGrane
  25. 25. • Email subject line
  26. 26. • Homepage teaser • Tweet • Related products link • Meta description
  27. 27. • Landing page snippet / A-Z entry
  28. 28. • Mobile site
  29. 29. • Tablet site
  30. 30. 4. Rule with a rod of iron
  31. 31. 56 ‘Measuring the impact of written content was voted the trickiest aspect of producing good digital copy’ Sticky Content’s Annual State of Digital Copywriting Survey 2013
  32. 32. 5. Make sure you have many heirs
  33. 33. Inspire a culture of idea generation
  34. 34. © Sticky Content Limited Blog and video • 211,000 page views • 2500 inbound links from top 8 articles • $2m sales
  35. 35. ‘My Crown is in my heart, not on my head: Not deck'd with Diamonds, and Indian stones: Nor to be seen: my Crown is call'd Content, A Crown it is, that seldom Kings enjoy.’ Shakespeare, Henry VI
  36. 36. Shake it up, go and make some great content... For your copy of the State of Digital Copywriting survey go to @catherinetoole @stickycontent