Month In Content Marketing: October 2017

November 6th, 2017

size? wins photography award, the rise of voice search and JD Williams’ debuts new campaign.

Footwear brand size? project wins photography award –  TCO’s Dirt Track commission for the foot and leisure wear brand size? has won ‘Best Project’ in this year’s prestigious Association of Photographers Awards.

The winner was Benedict Redgrove’s series on the UK’s Dirt Track Racing community, which was commissioned as the lead cover story for SPACES IN BETWEEN, TCO’s content series for size?, situates the sport as a place where cultures collide. The look and feel of the scene settles “somewhere between B-boy and old school greaser.”


In Ben’s photography using meticulous techniques in post-production, the detailed backdrop of the racing is knocked back. What comes to the fore is the detail of rider and motorcycle, and a scene that is as inclusive and open-minded as it is dynamic. “Dirt Track Racing is unique because of the people that run it and the people that ride in it,” says Gary Inman, editor of the scene’s key channel, Sideburn, and author of the story that accompanies Ben’s piece.

“The riders competing could be anything from Vegan Art Directors, tubby tilers or freckly schoolgirls. It really isn’t like any other motorcycle scene out there.”

More here.

Canadian tourist board debuts new campaign – Destination Canada, the Canadian Tourist Board’s latest campaign, launched in October.

Created for the brand by CMA member TCO’ the campaign comprises a series of films in which Channel 4′ ‘First Dates’ host Fred Sirieix explores Canada’s cosmopolitan cities and stunning nature first hand.

Canada was recently named destination of the year by Lonely Planet, USA Today and the New York Times. Will Fred fall in love with Canada too? The two films were launched on the Daily Mail’s digital platforms, racking up more than one million views each.

Fred’s films will be followed by a series of influencer films featuring the likes of John Quilter, AKA the Food Busker, which will also appear on The Guardian, Huck magazine, Die Zeit and YouTube. The German-language films on Die Zeit feature a set of German influencers — chef Fabio Haebel, designer Leander Angerer and champion boulderer Monika Retschy — exploring their passions across Canada. This is the third year of TCO London’s production of travel content for Destination Canada.

Last year’s campaign has been shortlisted for an International Content Marketing award, in the best travel category.

More here.

Nat West’s Moneysense campaign up for a PPA award John Brown‘s work on Content created for MoneySense, NatWest’s flagship financial education programme, has been recognised by the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) in their annual digital awards.

Developed for the brand by CMA member John Brown, the aim of the campaign was to transform MoneySense for a digital age, providing engaging and interactive digital content that supports teachers and parents. The John Brown and Nat West teams have created innovative resources to equip young people with the financial skills they need to manage money now and in adulthood.

The content marketing agency won the ‘Digital Information Product of the Year’ award for their work, beating a number of strong entries.

The judges described MoneySense as the standout entry in a very tight category. They commented that the content has been perfectly tailored to its target audience and delivered in a compelling and engaging fashion throughout. With a hugely impressive user response and an average seven-minute dwell time, MoneySense is really delivering on all accounts.

Caroline Edwards, NatWest Sustainable Banking Lead, said: “We’re delighted that MoneySense has been recognised in this way. Thanks to everyone at John Brown involved in helping young people learn about money.”

More here.

John Brown Media shortlisted for ten 2017 BSME Awards –  The CMA member has notched up an impressive list of nominations at this year’s BSME awards.

Rosie Mellor who edits Harveys, Vanessa Thompson, editor of John Lewis Edition, and Tessa Pearson, editor of John Lewis Home, are all up for Editor of the Year Branded Content. While William Sitwell is up for Editor of the Year In the Food and Drink category, for his work on Waitrose Food.

Four of the company’s art directors have been recognised in the shortlist this year. Clare Watters for John Lewis Edition; Laura Eyres for John Lewis Home; James Wood, for The Roger Collective for Virgin, and Kerry Wakefield, for Waitrose Food, are all up for Art Director of the Year – Branded Content.

Art director Anisha Panchasara, has been nominated for Cover of the Year B2B, for her work on Paragraph, while Kerry Wakefield, notches up another nomination, this time for Cover of the Year Consumer for Waitrose Food.

Andrew Hirsch, CEO at John Brown Media, said: “The team spirit at John Brown Media never ceases to amaze me, and there is a great emphasis on nurturing and developing creative talent –  something we take very seriously. We may be the world’s leading content agency, but we still have the same pioneering spirit and passion for new and creative talent, just like we had 30 years ago.

The results will be announced at the 2017 BSME Awards Dinner on Tuesday, 21 November at The Sheraton Grand London Park Lane Hotel.

More here.

Big things predicted for voice search  – A new study by global performance marketing agency iProspect has highlighted the rise of voice search among UK customers. The findings deliver new insight into the factors shaping the adoption of voice activated technology and the future impact it will have on consumer commerce.

Key findings include:

  • Despite predicted trends on the rise of voice search (50% search being via voice by 2020, ComScore), only 15% of adults in the UK are using voice search today
  • Although the predominant voice behaviour is broad information seeking, 25% of voice search has purchase intent behind it (find a store location, purchase or order something, research something you want to buy)
  • 35-54 year olds are as likely to use voice search as 18-24 year olds
  • Over 10% of 65+ use voice to search in the UK
  • Men are twice as likely as women to purchase using voice

The 2017 research project, based on an online survey of 1,118 UK consumer respondents, reveals that although voice search is on the rise, it is still far from the predominant method of searching. This creates clear implications for brands today and tomorrow.

We have focused on the today; the 7M+ people in the UK using voice search in 2017. Utilising the research to identify opportunities for brand to leverage voice search to drive business performance.

Stefan Bardega, CEO iProspect UK & Ireland commented: “As technology powering voice search gets smarter, consumer adoption will increase exponentially. This will have major implications for businesses as they’ll have to re-imagine their search strategies if they want their products to be discovered and purchased across all interfaces. Like social and mobile before it, voice activation is disrupting the digital ecosystem for brands. Those that are ready will remain relevant to their customers.”

More here.

JD Williams debuts new campaign – Online retailer JD Williams unveiled its new-look brand with a multi-million pound advertising campaign.

The multi-channel campaign includes a 60 second and 30 second TV advert featuring an extensive range of autumn fashion, accessories, home ware and beauty products.

The ad campaign is part of a wider rebrand to JD Williams THE LIFESTORE, which celebrates the attitudes, interests and ambitions of its female customers and positions the brand as a modern online department store for the 45 – 60 year old woman. Dubbed ‘A Colourful Life’, the ad campaign stars five female models in a series of life moments including starting a new career, dating and reclaiming the home after children leave the nest, set to an uplifting soundtrack, Woman by the artist Ruelle.

The TV launch will be supported with significant digital investment in video, social media and immersive display formats. The autumn campaign will be followed by a Christmas variation launching in November, with media being handled by Carat Manchester.

Beth Lowry, Director of Creative at N Brown Group which owns JD Williams, said: “We’re incredibly excited for everyone to see the new campaign and the brand’s new look. We’ve evolved JD Williams to evolve with our customer and are championing and celebrating the 45 to 60 year old women in a way which taps into her unique attitude, rather than her age. We think our customers will really respond well to the positioning.”

As part of the campaign, the brand has partnered with some of the UK’s top lifestyle journalists and most influential bloggers aged 45 plus to create ‘The Colour Council’, developed by Y&R London’s new Content and Partnerships Division. The Colour Council will create regular editorial content that will be published both in JD William’s new print magalogue,, which replaces the retailer’s traditional customer catalogues, and on the JD Williams website.

This focus on establishing strong editorial partnerships also includes a collaboration with Time Inc. UK for activity across its woman&home, Woman and GoodtoKnow publications.

A first for Time Inc. UK, the campaign ‘Don’t Tell Me I Can’t’ in association with JD Williams, will have its own identity running across the magazines and website. Through regular editorial content and a new mentoring scheme, readers will be encouraged to learn a new skill, from interior design to blogging. The campaign will culminate in an event in early 2018 where the mentored women will put their new skills into practice. The partnership was brokered by Carat Manchester and The Story Lab with a brief to challenge traditional preconceptions of women in their 40’s and 50’s and support the JD Williams AW17 campaign of giving women an alternative view on their lifestage activated through multiple media touch points.

More here.

Also this month the CMA blog looked at how Artificial Intelligence could change branded content, is digital PR getting harder? and the evolution of influencer marketing.

Ashley Norris, Consultant Editor, The CMA

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