#MPconf16: Turning Readers Into Fans: Content Lessons from the Sports World

mpconf16Iterate iterate iterate | Katie Roden, Lead Consultant at Seven League, joined the Bookseller’s Marketing and Publicity conference to discuss turning your readers into fans.

What’s the difference between sport and publishing? For one, the budget is pretty different, but it’s similar in what you want to achieve. You build up to an event or launch, hope to monetise excitement, and keep the fans with you. So here are five lessons:

1. Care as much as they do. Everyone has heard a lot about passion at the conference, but you need to tap into and share the fans’ passion. Show you believe it too. If you’re corporate, you don’t sound like people. Be excited, curious, get into the mind of your readers. Be generous, share other stuff. UFC are particularly good at this in the sports world, and Iceland, the supermarket, tapped into the Euros well when mistaken for the football team online.

2. Be relevant. Budgets are tight – don’t do blanket campaigns, or use bots for following and likes. Think of the fans who engage with you and spend time with you. Invest in them. Niall from One Direction showed up to a UFC fight and they ended up with an influx of people not usually in their circles following what they did, so they made sure to boost the fact that he was there.

3. Always be there for them. Mobile is the starting point for everything that you do. You search on your phone for authors, books, interests – you find the gaps and opportunities. Check the top three apps you use and search your brand – increasingly people only use the apps they have, not any new websites, so you need to make sure you’re visible. Most videos are played online with the sound off, so see how yours looks without it.

4. Give the right stuff in the right place. Expecting one piece of content to work across all platforms simply won’t work. The needs on Youtube are different from Facebook and from Instagram. It all comes down to a core question: what’s going to make people share your content? Serena Williams is a brilliant example of someone who knows how to do content across platforms.

5. Show your fans love and respect. Be open and generous about celebrating work that your fans do. If someone is interested enough to sign up to your email – make it worth it.

There’s a famous video of a young mascot who realises he’s next to Wayne Rooney. Put your readers in this position with what you do. Make them amazed.

More from the Bookseller’s Marketing and Publicity Conference.

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