Content strategy: planning and delivering standout content

22 February 2018
09.30 - 17.00
CharityComms organisational and individual members: £175+vat
Corporate Partners: £220+vat
Small charity (income up to £1m): £195+vat
Medium charity (income £1-5m): £245+vat
Large charity (income £5m - 10m): £280+vat
Super large charity (income £10m+): £310+vat
Corporate/Public sector: £395+vat

etc.venues (Prospero House)
241 Borough High Street

In today’s competitive and information-rich environment it’s crucial to have a strategy for delivering content that can help bring your charity to life and drive engagement.

Charities often have rich mines of content and important information to share, but they also have specific challenges. From how to support content production in non-digital teams to creating unified models for content production that suit complex organisations. Keeping up with the latest technologies, trends and innovations can also be a challenge when you have limited resources.

Join us for a packed day of workshops, peer-to-peer learning opportunities and inspiring case studies revealing how you can boost your content strategy and keep-up with the latest innovations in this area. The day will include streams on innovation and strategy as well as a special “toolbox” track that will focus on tools and skills and a “free” stream for you to tell us what you’d like to see on the agenda.

Refreshments and snacks will be provided during the breaks and there’ll be a two-course networking lunch.

This conference is now fully booked sorry. Please get in touch with Robyn to be added to the waiting list.

Have a question about the content? Please get in touch with Emma. Have a question about the event in general? Please get in touch with Harri.


On the agenda

Breakout session streams

Strategy and insight  |  Inspiration and innovation  |  Toolbox  | Your content

09.30 – 10.00 Registration and breakfast
10.00 – 10.05


Adeela Warley, CEO, CharityComms

10.05 – 10.35 Establishing your content strategy
We’re told all the time that we need to be more strategic with our content. Phrases like “take people on a journey” and “build the case from the top” get thrown around constantly. But what does this actually mean and how do we start to do it? In his talk, Chris will run through how he set up the content strategy team at Cancer Research UK. He’ll also give some practical advice to help establish a content strategy for your own charity.
Chris Flood, content strategy lead, digital and supporter experiences, Cancer Research UK
10.35 – 11.05

Keep it fresh – trends you can ride, ideas you should steal
Content marketing exists in a very fluid world. Technology is getting smarter, data is getting (even) bigger and – perhaps most importantly – our culture is shifting. Let’s look at the specifics that are going on in these three spaces, see who’s taking advantage of them and think about how we can do the same.
Rob Mosley, creative partner and Sadia Siddiqui, client services director, Nonsense London

11.05 – 11.30 Refreshment break
11.30 – 12.15

Breakout session one

(you’ll receive a link in your booking confirmation email to book your breakout sessions in advance)

Strategy and insight

1a. Developing an annual calendar – how best to prioritise your content
Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by the requests from all corners of your organisation to produce more new content? It can be difficult to push back even when you know it’s the right thing to do. A system for prioritising your content could help you balance competing internal needs with the experience your audiences want. In this session, Rachel will outline how her organisation recently implemented a new system for reviewing and prioritising content. She’ll offer her advice on how we can best work with other departments while keeping audiences at the heart of our communications.
Rachel Geron, senior marketing manager and Sam Butler, digital marketing manager, Anthony Nolan

Suitable for: anyone looking to develop a content calendar (including a social calendar) to help their organisation prioritise content. Would suit all budgets and sizes

Inspiration and innovation

1b. Launching BECCA – an app to help women readjust after breast cancer
Breast Cancer Care recently launched BECCA, an app that provides practical tips and emotional support to help people adapt to life after breast cancer. Content spans clinical information, healthy recipes, inspiration and personal stories. By working in an agile way, analysing their data and understanding what BECCA users wanted, they were able to develop content that users connected deeply with, increasing retention rates from 5%-55%. Come along to this case study session to hear the inside story plus get top tips on using agile ways of working to develop your content.
Claudia Knowles, digital content strategist, Breast Cancer Care

Suitable for: charities looking to use content to provide support. Also for charities considering developing an app or for content managers interested in agile ways of working. Would suit medium to large budgets


1c. Creativity isn’t fairy dust – tips for tapping into your creative brain
To create cut-through content you need to develop original and creative ways to tell your charity’s stories. But how can this be done with small teams, shrinking budgets and often little time? In this workshop, Claire will explore the psychology of creativity and how we can use this understanding to tap into our own creative brains. From developing campaigns to writing press releases, Claire will offer a practical methodology that can be used for any content projects to help you and your teams develop original ideas that will bring your content to life. 
Claire Biscard, creative director, Spencer du Bois

Suitable for: those who want to foster a creative mindset in their organisation and learn practical techniques regardless of budget or role

Your content

1d. Optimising video for social in 2018
Video content continues to dominate our social media channels – but how do you make the most of the medium without tying yourself up in knots? In this interactive session, we’ll explore the three key things you must consider when creating social video. We’ll look at some of the video marketing trends to look out for in 2018, and give practical advice for optimising your content across different social channels and formats.
Ed Hardy, creative lead, Raw London

Suitable for: both small and large charities, marketers and content producers who might already have a content strategy but want to make better use of video, especially on social media

12.15 – 12.25 Movement time
12.25 – 13.10

Breakout session two

(you’ll receive a link in your booking confirmation email to book your breakout sessions in advance)

Strategy and insight

2a. Digital content capabilities – 10 lessons about people, process and tools
A session looking at all the content elements that you need to embed within your organisation, across comms and non-comms teams. We’ll explore those that have done this successfully, allowing them to produce content which meets the needs of their audiences, whilst driving success for the charity. Examples will include Great Ormond Street, Ashden, Locality and Autistica amongst others.
James Gadsby-Peet, director of digital, William Joseph

Suitable for: anyone who is interested in how to successfully embed content creation within their organisation, across comms and non-comms teams. For medium to large charities

Inspiration and innovation

2b. Breaking the mould: challenging the traditional charity appeal
Taking the learning from Manpons, the Height Calculator and other successful campaigns, the digital engagement team at WaterAid wanted to approach their latest appeal from a new angle. This appeal focused on Tombohuaun – a tiny village deep in the jungle of Sierra Leone. The village’s only water source was a dirty pond, causing constant sickness and claiming lives from waterborne diseases. They produced a multi-channel campaign based entirely on Tombohuaun, transforming source content into engaging digital products including a Facebook Chatbot, name generator quiz and a beautiful 360-degree image so that people could experience life in the village for themselves. Join this session to be inspired and get new ideas for your next campaign.

Abigail MacDougall, digital content manager, WaterAid

Suitable for: campaign, digital, content and marketing managers/editors from larger charities looking for new content ideas to drive engagement


2c. Five ways to grow your email list – and then keep people interested
From microsites and quizzes to petitions and ads, in this session Sarah and Alex will be outlining some top tactics for increasing your email sign-ups. They’ll explore how we can keep people interested and engaged depending on what route they arrived by and what actions they’ve taken. They’ll also look at how we can do all of this making sure we’re GDPR compliant and following best practice to ensure our audiences have a great email experience.
Sarah Casey, head of client services and Alex Lloyd, co-founder and director, Forward Action

Suitable for: anyone interested in innovative ways to grow email lists while being GDPR compliant. For all levels of digital campaigning, fundraising and comms teams

Toolbox 2d. Sharpening your content tools
The RNLI is doing more than ever to prevent drowning, and aiming to reach more people. So the charity faces fresh challenges when it comes to content: new audiences, new channel strategies, a wider variety of messages. This session shares some of the tools being sharpened by the RNLI’s creative and content teams – including their content strategy map, tone of voice approach and creating Made to Stick content.
Rory Stamp, strategic content manager, RNLI
Suitable for: anyone interested in honing their content strategy map, tone of voice approach or methods for finding new content angles
13.10 – 14.00


Two-course networking lunch included.

14.00 – 14.45

Breakout session three

(you’ll receive a link in your booking confirmation email to book your breakout sessions in advance)

Strategy and insight

3a. Content strategy and transformation: joining the dots
By joining the dots, content can take on a more strategic, valued role. Content strategy connects your communications with the needs of your users and with the objectives of your charity. By thinking about the strategy as much as the content, it’s a huge opportunity to transform your organisation for the better. It may also be a challenge. This interactive session will take you through a strategic framework that enables you to position content where it will have the most impact.
Laura Robertson, founder and Julius Honnor, founder, Contentious

Suitable for: anyone who wants to develop a more strategic role for content; a role that has real impact. It will be helpful for anyone who is working on a content strategy or thinking about doing one. Suitable for all budgets

Inspiration and innovation

3b. How digital content strategy can improve user experience and supporter journeys
In this talk, delegates will hear about how Unicef UK developed the content strategy for its award-winning website redesign; how they use audience personas to develop key supporter journeys across all digital channels; and lessons from how the organisation as a whole has adapted to the change in direction.

Paul Isaacs, digital content manager and Isabelle Andrews, digital content specialist, Unicef UK

Suitable for: digital, creative and content teams from small to large charities, considering how to improve their digital user experience and supporter journeys


3c. How to use social listening to create content your audiences care about
You’re under pressure to constantly find ideas that excite your audience. You spend time writing blogs, sourcing images, and promoting the heck out of your content. But sometimes all you hear are crickets, and even the most prolific writers and creatives can get writer’s block when the pressure is on. Dr Jillian Ney, the UK’s first doctor of social media and digital behavioural scientist will join Hootsuite’s Adrian Cockle to delve into how you can use social listening to create content your audiences really care about, all illustrated with case studies and practical tips.
Dr Jillian Ney, doctor of social media and digital behavioural scientist, DRJN 
Adrian Cockle, global industry principal for the charity sector, Hootsuite

Suitable for: practitioners, strategists and planners looking for simple tools to gain insight into audience behaviours and attention patterns to create content and campaigns that are focused on driving conversions – donations, signups and advocacy actions

Your content 3d. Content planning for social media marketing
It goes without saying that today we’re frequently bombarded with content in our newsfeeds. Coupled with the fact that changes to platform algorithms are continual – it can be difficult for charities to cut through and reach their audiences. In this session, Nadia will offer industry insights into the platforms and environments they operate in. From creating content with your platforms in mind to using platforms in more natural and user-driven ways, Nadia will offer some strategies for reaching audiences with your content on social media. She will share examples from across the sectors of who is doing it well and who is not.  There will also be an opportunity to bring your own problems to the group to discuss.
Nadia Saint, director, integrated media strategy, Weber Shandwick
Suitable for: anyone using social media to reach audiences with content. Would suit all budgets
14.45 – 14.55 Movement time
14.55 – 15.40

Breakout session four

(you’ll receive a link in your booking confirmation email to book your breakout sessions in advance)

Strategy and insight

4a. Developing digital content to drive supporter journeys
It’s all too easy to assume that the content we invest in, and painstakingly create and promote, is right for your supporters – however, is that really the case? Is it truly what they want, and need, to see?  Have you started with your objectives or have you first thought about your audience? Using examples from their work in the public, charity and private sectors, including with the NHS, David will explore how you can go about starting with your audience(s) before going on to produce the right content for the right people and at the right time in their journey. He will offer delegates a framework for customer experience journey mapping and share his insight on how to the apply the outputs and the moments of truth into your content strategy.   
David Somerville, strategy director, Fresh Egg Digital Marketing Agency

Suitable for: anyone struggling for inspiration on how to refresh their overall content strategy

Inspiration and innovation

4b. Santa Forgot: the power of story-led content in driving brand awareness and engagement
From John Lewes’ Moz the Monster to Aldi’s Kevin the Carrot – 2017’s Christmas ads focused on upbeat themes. Bucking this trend – one campaign stood out from the rest. In a bid to draw attention to Alzheimer’s and the importance of medical research, one charity bravely reimagined the festive season’s jolly figurehead and gave Santa dementia. Alzheimer’s Research UK’s campaign was hugely successful in driving brand-awareness and engagement. Tim will explore why story-led content and incongruity can be so powerful in connecting with people. He’ll offer this tips and learnings from the campaign to help your charity use storytelling to produce standout content.
Tim Parry, director of communications and brand, Alzheimer’s Research UK

Suitable for: content, digital, comms and marketing managers interested in using storytelling to drive engagement. There will be something for all budgets but there will be a focus on animation which can be expensive.


4c. How to turn specialist charity knowledge into brilliant public-facing content
Every charity needs to transform complex subjects and ideas into accessible and inspiring content. Some do it better than others. In this practical and interactive session, Paul will share his experiences of getting charity content projects on track using a number of content strategy techniques, and highlight some of the strategic language decisions you’ll need to consider. He’ll also explore pair writing – co-creating content with subject-matter experts in the organisation – to produce more powerful communications and make sign-offs less painful!
Paul Allen, director, Lark

Suitable for: anyone responsible for managing communications projects and content creators – at both small and large charities – who want to apply a more strategic approach to their content workflow and simplify sign-offs

 Your content

4d. Small charity focus: making the most of your case studies to create great content

In this case study session, Catherine will outline how Target Ovarian Cancer uses storytelling to create great content. She’ll offer tips for how small charities can make the most of beneficiaries’ stories to create highly engaging content that works for different audiences and across multiple channels. This will be an interactive session, working on practical problems such as gathering quality case studies, deciding what stories will best support your communications objectives, and using stories across different channels and for different audiences. Catherine will use a mixture of practical activities and discussions to look at interview technique, tailoring your content to suit different audiences and making content go further.

Catherine Murray, PR and communications manager, Target Ovarian Cancer

Suitable for: officers and assistants from small charities looking after case studies and producing content for multiple channels – from social media to press releases

 Your content

4e. Creating that human connection – across all your audiences
Creating those little ‘nuggets’ of content that touch the hearts and minds of those who you want to influence is no easy task. No matter what your communication is trying to achieve; whether it’s raising brand awareness, recruiting volunteers or fundraising – creating a rapport with your varied target audiences is vital. But with so many competing messages, how can you make your content stand-out in all the noise and have that all-important human connection? Lisa will share examples of how SSAFA has used Virtual Reality and other media to best effect in their recent campaigns to express the ‘human’ side of what they do and the difference they make. 

Lisa Shattock, head of marketing, SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity

Suitable for: anyone interested in creating engaging content that will ‘touch’ and drive response with your supporters, fundraisers and potential beneficiaries, across a variety of media and platforms

15.40 – 16.00 Refreshment break
16.00 – 16.30

Does your content marketing strategy need a reality check?
Marketers have been operating under a false pretence regarding their audience’s ability to concentrate for longer than 8 seconds. Jason calls this the Myth of the Goldfish. In his talk, Jason will debunk the myth and reveal how changes in society’s ability to multi-task are transforming how organisations should approach their advertising strategy and content marketing efforts.

You will leave this session with a new understanding of:

  • How to create the most efficient content to fuel your demand generation efforts
  • Why long-form content is an essential part of a successful integrated marketing strategy
  • How to use advertising on LinkedIn as a testing ground for your broader content marketing strategy
  • The importance of empowering employees as advocates to significantly expand the reach of your content

Jason Miller, global content marketing leader, LinkedIn

16.30 – 17.00

Government Digital Service: supporting content production and management across a complex organisation
With a vast content output, produced for diverse audiences by multiple teams with varying digital content skills, how does GDS ensure it meets the needs of all users? In this talk, Amanda will outline some key challenges for GDS in supporting content production across government. From developing a unified model for content production to ongoing measurement and review of content performance  – Amanda will share the inside story.
Amanda Diamond, content product lead, Government Digital Service