Welcome to London, Contently, at least you avoided pork scratchings

A key challenge for companies entering a new market is to offer something the existing shops have missed.

Maybe that was what Contently chief revenue officer Brett Lofgren meant when he admitted eating, among other things, some ‘meat pies’ during a recent fact-finding trip to London.

That is not something most UK-based content marketers would have put in writing.

In his post, Lofgren speaks about the need for writers, video producers etc, who have worked on the likes of the Financial Times, Guardian, The Economist. Moreover, he says, Europe is ready for “the brand publishing revolution” and “specifically, it is ready for us”.

There’s nothing wrong in enthusiasm and don’t get me wrong, there are some interesting thoughts and points in the post about launching overseas. But there is a key mistake in this piece and a bowl of reheated pub chips if you spotted it. Yes, it’s dated June 2015.

If this had been written about a recce trip to the UK that was made in 2010, it might have rung true. But the ship has sailed. Yes, companies do want writers from the FT and they’re already getting them. As Lofgren says, the UK content marketing sector is as mature as the US one.

And so it should be. We at FirstWord have also been meeting US clients and guess what, they want FT-grade content that we’ve been writing for them. But then the request is unsurprising when you note the high number of ex-FT staffers running key US business publications. The last time I looked the CEO of Dow Jones was ex-FT, as was the editor of the WSJ, the editor of WSJ.com, the editor of WSJ Europe, the CEO of News Corp. I could go on. They’re all old colleagues of mine.

I have to say though that a well-known content marketing agency launching in the UK can only be a good thing for content marketing. Our real competition lies in the other marketing sectors that claim client budgets such as direct marketing and brand advertising.

So welcome to London, Contently. And a friendly word of warning for when you return: avoid these the next time you’re tempted by pub snacks.

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