In this very sweary talk entitled ‘Bollocks: A presentation thingy on why most B2B content is absolutely shite’, Dan Kelsall shares with you how to not make your content shit.

Dan Kelsall speaking at The Marketing MeetupFor those who don’t have time to listen to the podcast above, read the transcript below, or check out his slides, here are some of Dan’s key points:

Professional is dead

In the metric that really matters when it comes to content – engagement – kids in their bedroom with terrible grammar are still driving better numbers than professional copywriters. The reason is they know their audience and speak to them in language they resonate with. Instead of looking for perfect – look for the things that matter to your audience.

Build your strategy as you go

Content sharing is still evolving, meaning there is a real opportunity to continue testing new methods and means of getting your content out there in a way that fits the people you want to speak to. Don’t just start another podcast because everyone else is doing it. Create something because you want to do it and your audience will love it.

This way of working also avoids that thing we all love to do as marketers: create long and complex strategies for our content because our CEO asked us to. A rapid production/testing approach to content means you stop doing content for content’s sake.

Repeatedly try different types of content

This one is simple. If you’re not getting traction on a particular platform, try something else. For example – if you’re not getting traction on your blog, try medium. If Wistia videos aren’t converting – try YouTube. The point here is your audience is everywhere – and it’s down to you to try and find them in the place they are comfortable and responsive.

Look for what’s next

And not just Facebook just because Gary Vee said it. On TikTok there is the next generation of customers engaging on the platform. Haven’t heard of it? Time to look it up and look out for what else is there.

Fuck short termism

Stop looking for fucking growth hacks. Work hard to build an audience. Work hard to get an engaged audience. And by doing that, that means testing content continuously until you find something that works: that’s the important part.

Be honest with yourself

The most difficult thing, but you have to become indifferent to your content to be able to see it for what it is. If it’s not working – switch it up because it doesn’t really matter what you think of your content – it matters what it is doing for your business.

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Transcript:

James:
Hi! This is James from the Birmingham Marketing Meetup. Hope you guys are all well? I’ve got a bit of a sweary podcast for you. It’s by a very entertaining chap called Dan Kelsall who I met a little while a go up in Manchester and have been following on LinkedIn for some time. And if you’re active on LinkedIn there’s a good chance you’ve seen some of this content, because he’s exceptionally good at getting messages out there. But he is a bit Marmite: some people might find his language a little bit much, so there is a parental advisory against this one. But I have to say, personally, I absolutely loved listening to his talk. I thought it was one of the most entertaining I’ve ever heard at the Marketing Meetup, and I think you guys will enjoy as well.

James:
As always, a massive thanks to Barry at Bravo Marketing. He’s been so helpful in getting these podcasts brought together for you guys. And make sure you sign up to the newsletter, the Wednesday at 2 club, follow us on Instagram, go the Facebook group: get as much value out of the Marketing Meetup as you can. It’s designed for you guys, and we want to be the best marketing meetup resource, whatever you want to call us, community, most importantly.

James:
And, yeah, so I hope you’re all well. Do enjoy this. And, yeah, we’ll speak to you soon.

Dan Kelsall:
Hello everyone?

Audience:
Hello!

Dan Kelsall:
How are you doing?

Audience:
I’m fine.

Dan Kelsall:
Get a bit more energy in the room, can everyone stand up? Yeah? And just turn to the person next to you, or someone you don’t know, and just say, “Please to fucking meet you mate!”

Audience:
Please to fucking meet you mate!

Dan Kelsall:
Good. Now sit the fuck down. Good. So this is a presentation on bollocks, okay? It’s about how most B2B content is absolutely shite. It’s by me, Dan Kelsall, a distinctly average content bloke. And yes, gentlemen, I am available for bollocks’ illustrations, and that is a self-portrait!

Dan Kelsall:
So, going to start with some controversy. First off, I know sales people, recruiters, cybersecurity consultants, I know kids smoking weed in the bedroom, who are better content producers than most of the market as I know. Think about it, okay? Think about the way things are nowadays, okay. There are teenagers in their bedrooms getting bigger numbers on social than social media experts. Yeah? There are bloggers with poor grammar with more engaged readers than Oxford educated copywriters. There are amateur video creators who bring more customers to the table than professional videographers. And this may or not be true, and apologies to the homeless charity with the addicts and stuff, but there are spice addicts shitting in their hands and producing better illustrations than most designers.

Dan Kelsall:
And what really pisses me off is when B2B content people say, “B2B content is changing.” Is it fuck? B2B content has already changed. It’s already changed, okay, and most B2B content creators missed the boat. And what that’s done is create a massive divide between the people that are doing it right, and the people sat in corporate marketing teams doing it wrong. And that divide gets bigger and bigger and bigger. Okay? Professional is dead. The line between the real us and the professional us is becoming more and more blurred, and the people that are realizing that are not pushing out corporate dry bollocks, are the people that are doing it right.

Dan Kelsall:
So language has shifted from professional to casual, right? Professionally produced images are regularly attracting less engagement than stuff that’s self-shot on mobile. Self-published short books are beating established authors and publishing houses in the charts. We wrote a book, or I wrote a book, in 20 hours, the other week, that is still a best seller. It sold 30 to 60 copies a day, on Amazon, for the past month. I did three social media posts, wrote it in 20 hours. It’s littered with spelling mistakes, it’s full of swear words, and it’s full of shit drawings like in this. Yeah?

Dan Kelsall:
Easily consumed voice content is repeatedly booting long-form blogs in the crotch, okay? And, no, ladies and gentlemen, that doesn’t mean you should go and produce another fucking podcast, right? That’s not what audio content is. The world does not need more shit podcasts, right? So if you thinking, “Oh, I might do a podcast and chat to my mate about marketing.” Fuck off! It’s shit!

Dan Kelsall:
So, at the moment, it’s the wild west of content sharing. Okay? And, yes, I am also available for illustrations of cowboys. It’s an opportunity for every brand, every individual, it doesn’t matter who you are, to test tons of different content quickly, right? And that’s the beauty of it, that’s what works. And yet most B2B content marketers continue to feed us dry vanilla shit, and, yes, that is a pile of shit with a spoon in it, without questioning why their corporate blog has no readers, their social content gets little engagement, their podcast has no listeners, and their email newsletters don’t get fucking opened. Nobody questions it, they just keep doing it!

Dan Kelsall:
But why … And this is a little bit controversial, so it you want to complain you can email me at [email protected]’tgiveafuckingshit.com! Why, if their content is crapper than the McCann’s “We didn’t do it,” faces, don’t they do anything about it? If you don’t honestly know whether they do it, if you watch the documentary and make your own decision … who knows? Because more often than not, what B2B marketing teams do is create and stick to a massive shitty strategy full of untested ideas, long content schedules, unproven assumptions, and overcomplicated marketing methodologies.

Dan Kelsall:
Some of you … Who works in marketing? Yeah, quite a few recognize this scenario then? CEO, “Janice, we need better content.” Janice, “No problem boss.” “Janice, we need a new content strategy.” You got it Janice: Yay! Your marketing team. Whoo! What the fuck is that? It’s the new content strategy that took her three months to build. Eh? Brilliant that innit? Three months of the companies time, no content produced. Yeah? Nothing tangible brought to the business, just a massive pile of fucking paper. But if marketing spent ages writing an extensive content strategy, and then when they finally execute it, it bombs, it was a loss-making exercise. Okay? Your company lost money for every second that you worked on that marketing strategy. Yeah?

Dan Kelsall:
But that’s not the biggest problem here, and this is something else you probably recognize, and you may or may not have done it yourself, right? The biggest problem, two things: when such strategies fall on their ass, you do one of two things: you either defend them, and you say, “Yay, look! Look boss, we got two Twitter followers. Woohoo!” Or, “Look at the brand awareness!” Mate, you got 10 likes, what fucking brand awareness? Or, they literally refuse to acknowledge the fact that it was shit, and they carry on doing the same corporate stuff, no reason behind it. But it’s bollocks! A massive set of hairy bollocks! It is nonsense, people. Yeah? That’s not how good content is created.

Dan Kelsall:
So what I’m going to do, I’m going to give you five pointers, take it or leave it, couldn’t really give a shit. It’s what I do:

Dan Kelsall:
Number one: build your strategy as you go, okay? So to create content, first, just start creating content, but don’t stick with stuff if it’s not working, yeah? Don’t stick with stuff if it’s not working, okay? What you do is you test content ideas, you find the stuff that resonates with your audience, and then you build your strategy and campaigns around stuff that resonates with the people that you’re trying to reach. It’s not rocket science is it? “No, Dan.”

Dan Kelsall:
Number two: Repeatedly try different types of content, so if your articles are getting no readers try a new platform, yeah? Try a different writing style, a new tone of voice. Just always get ready to scrap it. The way the world works now is people produce stuff quickly, test if it works. You wouldn’t produce a massive product, a tech product, push it out to your audience, and go, “There you go. Bam! There’s a tech product. Everyone use it!” Yeah? You’d do a feature. You’d find out if they like it, then you’d iterate, iterate, iterate, iterate: that’s how you build a product. And that is also how you build a content strategy.

Dan Kelsall:
Number three: Look out for what’s next. Stop listening to the likes of Gary V, who tells you to get on Facebook and get on Instagram. He’s invested in both platforms heavily, of course he’s going to tell you to get on there. But if this is a hill, and you’ve got shark-infested waters here, ready to gobble up all your marketing shite, Facebook’s here, on his way down, off he pops. Instagram’s at the top: you’re going to take ages to build an audience on there. LinkedIn’s just about to come up to the curve: you can probably get on there quickly if you’re quick; should have got on there two years’ ago in reality.

Dan Kelsall:
But it’s the stuff that’s down here that people are missing. Yeah? Things like Tiktok: you should all be looking at that. I don’t care if you’re B2B, B2C, it doesn’t matter. Yeah? All good social networks start with the kids. There’s probably a pedophilia joke somewhere there, but I won’t do it! All good content networks start with the kids, okay? Get in there early. It’s the people that get in their early that are on top of the hill now dominating. Yeah?

Dan Kelsall:
Number four: Fuck short-termism. This is my biggest bugbear. Stop looking for fucking growth hacks. Apologies to any growth hackers in the room. Not really, don’t care! But fuck short-termism, okay? Stop it. Stop growth hacking. Stop joining pods on LinkedIn and getting your mates to like your stuff. They’re not liking it because they like it, they’re liking it because they’re your mate. They’re shit. Yeah? Stop it. Stop short-termism. Stop trying to growth hack. Work hard to build an audience. Work hard to get an engaged audience. And by doing that, that means testing content continuously until you find something that works: that’s the important part.

Dan Kelsall:
Number five: Be honest with yourself. This is the most difficult thing for content creators to do. It’s really tough. You need to become indifferent to your own content because it doesn’t fucking matter if you like it. You don’t get to have an opinion as a marketer. The only thing that matters is whether your audience like it. Does that make sense. Yeah? So get very, very comfortable with looking at your own content, and if it’s shit, if it gets no likes, look in the mirror and say, “God that was shit,” and try something else. Does that make sense?

Audience:
Yeah.

Dan Kelsall:
Good.

Dan Kelsall:
Well that’s content, or fucking good content as I call it. That’s the end of my talk. Nice one.

Join the wednesday @two club

We're all marketers here, so know the promise of 'the latest news, straight to your inbox' isn't gonna fly around these parts. 

Our newsletter will be valuable to you because we share one mission with you: the desire to make you a better marketer. 

Sign up and we'll make it nice and easy for you to achieve that mission by sending you the newsletter every two weeks at 2PM on a Wednesday. If that isn't your desire - no worries, this newsletter probably isn't right (and at the end of the day, noone needs another newsletter they don't read in their inbox!)

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