Three UK Tech companies who are Nailing Content Marketing
Over the past few years there has been an explosion in the number of new tech based companies in London. The area around Shoreditch now boasts so many startups its only serious rivals, in new tech companies, are the key US business engines of New York and Silicon Valley.
Many of the companies might have global ambitions, but at the same time they have a very British flavour. Given the success of The City of London it is not surprising, for example, that the capital is rich in Fintech (financial tech) starts up. There is also an explosion of media tech companies and other newer areas include insurance tech and health tech.
One thing that unites many of the companies, and indeed some of the more established tech players, is their championing of content. Far sighted marketing execs realised early on that insightful and engaging content not only ensures reach via search engines, but also enables their company to have a credible voice in their niche. This in turn can prove to be a very effective new business driver.
Here then are a trio of British startups who have created innovative and interesting content which appear to be yielding excellent results for them.
In some ways to call the excellent Backlisted Podcast ‘branded content’ seems to not really do it justice. Yet at the same time it is clearly a highly effective marketing tool for a startup called Unbound.
The company is fascinating one in that it has a platform that enables authors to crowdfund money for the books they are writing. They create the title and theme of the book, and invariably video content, and if they meet with the company’s approval the pitch gets posted on the site. It isn’t just first-timers who use Unbound to get their books funded either, established authors, high profile bloggers and comedians are using it to fund their projects.
The Backlisted Podcast is one way that company uses to connect with a book-loving community. For around an hour key company personnel discuss forgotten, but excellent cult novels with invited authors, journalists and fiction influentials. The result is one of the most interesting and intelligent podcasts to come out of the UK.
Unbound is at the heart of the podcast, but is never pushed too hard. Ultimately though I am sure the success of the podcast has pulled many people into the Unbound universe, and I bet a fair chunk have gone on to fund a book (I’m up to four and counting).
Freeagent is one of the most successful startups to emerge from Scotland in recent years. The company offers online accountancy software aimed at freelancers and SMEs. The idea is that it takes the hassle out of invoice and expense management, VAT, payroll and Self Assessment tax return filing.
What Freeagent has done so brilliantly is to bring the topic alive via a blog that is a must read for anyone in the UK starting out on their own. It is packed with useful tips and advice – from ‘how to price out your services’ through to ‘how to get paid on time.’ The authors have clearly taken a page out of the Buzzfeed content playbook too by using GIF-illustrated listicles to create content that is funny, engaging and is sure resonate with their audience. Freeagent has successfully created the feel of the club for freelancers via their content and the sales element is done subtly and politely and never too intrusively.
The company strategy has possibly been inspired by Sage who pioneered this type of content in the UK and created a similar club feel for larger businesses. Like Sage though they have executed it brilliantly and I am certain that content is a big part of Freeagent’s new business engine.
Actually calling Kurtosys a startup is stretching things a little as the company has been in existence since 2002. Over that time though it has constantly evolved and innovated and today it offers a series of online digital platforms largely aimed at financial institutions.
In order to position itself as authority on the intersection between technology and finance, while at the same time reaching out to emerging companies which could be potential customers, Kurtosys created the Fintech blog. Updated at least several times a month, the blog takes a 360 degree look at the Fintech world and aims to ensure that the reader is up to date with what is happening in a what is a very fast moving industry.
One very smart move is that the company, which has clients across the globe, has profiled the Fintech scene in individual countries like this post on Brazil. It is really good read dipping into the historical and political context of the country and highlighting why it boasts so many innovative Fintech companies. There is information on both regulation and the companies that are operating there. It is made even more engaging, well to this reader anyhow, by the inclusion of gratuitous footballing analogies and references.
It is one small part of a larger content output from Kurtosys which also includes videos, infographics and webinars. The company operates the new business funnel in a classic and highly effective way drawing readers in via top of the funeral SEO-friendly engaging content and then gently pushing them on to content like the webinars and videos which are more likely to secure a sale.
Commissioned by the CMA