How to Use Social to Sell Out Your Event Before It’s Released

How to Use Social to Sell Out Your Event Before It's Released

Chris Marr, Founder and Director of the Content Marketing Academy, joins the Social Pros Podcast to share how he uses social to sell-out events before they have even launched.

In This Episode:

Chris Marr

Content Marketing Academy

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Full Episode Details

How to Use Social to Sell Out Your Event Before It's Released(Re)Marketing to the Right Crowd

If you look at today’s social media landscape, you may think that in-person engagements are going the way of the dinosaur. As more and more people communicate and collaborate online, there appears to be a lesser desire to connect in person.

Chris has discovered that the opposite is true. It’s not so much that people don’t want to attend an in-person event, it’s that they value face-to-face even more and are very picky as to how they spend their physical time.

A well-planned in-person event can create a lifelong connection with a customer that no amount of online interaction can replicate. The tricky part is not only in planning such an event, but also in getting attendees to trust and believe the event will be worth their time.

To do so, Chris markets beyond the room. Every event is marketed to those in attendance and heavily marketed to those that are not in attendance. When the event is shared with and by those who are not there, Chris acquires the social proof he needs to prove that this an event that makes getting offline worth it.

In This Episode

  • Why creating great social means starting with great content
  • How careful marketing to people outside the room leads to a successful event the following year
  • Why generating online buzz means keeping live, in-person events on the calendar
  • Why ensuring a full room of attendees means continual remarketing to people with tickets

Quotes From This Episode

Our members are absolutely our foundation and our core. Click To Tweet

“We’re having to tier a lot of the conversations we’re having to make sure that people in there aren’t getting bored with the basic questions but are also getting value.” —@chrismarr101

“My job is to challenge our members and push them to a level of learning that they weren’t even expecting.” —@chrismarr101

Social is not a first-tier priority in content marketing.” —@chrismarr101

“I’m stunned to see the potential of LinkedIn for an increase in my own referral network readership for content.” —@chrismarr101

“Some people don’t buy into your live event for two or three years because they want to see social proof.” —@chrismarr101

Every single live event that we do is a huge marketing activity. Click To Tweet

We want to become oversubscribed all the time.” —@chrismarr101

“The live event experience is something very special, and people want to have experiences.” —@chrismarr101

The only thing that technology can't replace is our in-person experience. Click To Tweet

Email is what underpins all of our activity. It’s the number one channel for us in terms of communication.” —@chrismarr101

“We don’t take 500 pictures and just dump them into an album on Facebook. I’ll drip them out for weeks, tagging individual people and telling a little story.” —@chrismarr101

Resources

See you next week!

Episode Transcript

Jay: Welcome everybody to Social Pros, the podcast for real people doing real work in social media. I am Jay Bear, founder of Convince and Convert, joined as always, by my special Texas friend. He is the executive strategist of SalesForce Marketing Cloud from the great city of Austin, Texas. He is your friend and mine, Mr. Adam Brown.  
Adam: Jay, how's your week going?  
Jay: It's pretty good. It is all kinds of balls in the air, exciting things, as always, here in Convince and Convert land. But at least I'm in ...  
Adam: You've got your new websites.  
Jay: New websites, new videos, all kinds of stuff. New content marketing e-book just launched, which is convenient because our guest on the show today actually runs something called the CMA. What does it stand for, Adam?  
Adam: It stands for Content Marketing Academy.  
Jay: The Content Marketing Academy in the UK. It is the legendary Chris Marr joins us on the program. Chris, thanks for being on Social Pros.  
Chris: Pleased to be here, guys. Thanks for having me.  
Jay: Tell us a little bit about that CMA and how it works. I know it's a membership organization so you join up with the CMA. And smart people like you tell folks about content marketing, social media and digital excellence. How did you come up with the idea, how does it work?  
Chris: In short, it was really a transition from a client services business that we ran from about 2013. And over the course of the last four or five years I just leaned in more to the things that interested me, which were live events and really more into a teaching role. So rather than doing the work for people as an agency, I just felt like it was a better place for me to be, to be a teacher. So now I spend my time teaching business owners and marketers how to do this thing we call content marketing better.  
  And I think it's just been a transition over that time. It's been very organic. It didn't even start as the Content Marketing Academy. It started off as a company called learning everyday and we've just listened to our audience and really organically grown over that period of time, over the last four or five years. It's been an interesting journey. I think having a membership business, people subscribe annually to that. It's pretty standard. We give them content, we teach them, we answer their questions. We advise, we coach and help them to understand content marketing and how they can grow their business with it.  
Jay: If you are part of the membership organization, so you are a member of the Content Marketing Academy, does that then give you entrance to some of the events that you produce or are the event attendees a different group of people than the CMA members?  
Chris: I think there's a mix in there, to be honest, Jay. We have a lot of our members do attend our events. They always get first dibs on tickets, they get the best prices, they get the discount. So they are definitely our core audience. And I think, even if you were to look at the data and look at all the customers we do get, the ones that aren't members come through our membership. So they're kind of like our disciples. So they're our core audience.  
  So it's a whole mix but our members are absolutely our foundation and our core.  
Jay: I haven't been doing this for a while now, do you see the types of challenges and questions that members ask you changing? Or is it the same kind of content marketing questions it's always been? Or now, several years into it they've evolved or the question types have evolved?  
Chris: Yes, that's a great point. And one of the things I really focus on with the membership is trying to really want to elevate that conversation. So it's one of the biggest challenges, actually, having a membership is trying to get away, or not always dealing with the basic questions. So we're facing that challenge now. It's a transition period for us where we're going from having people who are starters to people who are already moving. So that would be a business that's already making a profit, already getting good sales, probably already doing some sort of content marketing and want to do better. So we're finding that transition, that's a challenge, I think in any membership. Is to look at people who have joined, say two or three years ago, to people who are joining now and how do we accommodate all of those different audiences. So we're finding that we're having to tier a lot of the conversations we're having, trying to make sure that people in there aren't getting bored with the basic questions but are also getting value.  
  So it's a different set of challenges but it's all good. It's just trying to make sure that those conversations are relevant for the level that people are at. And I think, you go back two or three years ago, I think people were at the novice stages of understanding what content marketing is.  
  And what we're starting to see, even if we look at our live events now, we're starting to look at speakers who are more at intermediate and advanced level in terms of the content they deliver. Because we really want to ... Like, it's what my job is to really challenge our members and push them to a level of learning that they, hopefully, weren't even expecting to go to. So yeah, it's a solid point and that's something that's a continual challenge for us.  
Jay: How do your members, in general, look at social media and its role versus content marketing? Is social media an amplification layer for good content? Is it an interaction opportunity with their customers? Is it door number three? Obviously it's going to vary a little bit from business to business but in general, how do they think about the relationship between content and social?  
Chris: Yes. What we are finding with our members, so our members are mainly in the UK. And they're mainly in the small to intermediate price space as well in all different B2B, B2C, all different categories. So what we are seeing, generally speaking, is that social is not a first tier priority in terms of when it comes to content marketing. And I think that's probably got a lot to do with how we teach it as well. We really want them to nail the content first. So that could be the blogs or videos or podcasts, wherever it might be. And create the best content they can. And then lean into social for things like amplification and promotional activities. So it's definitely, content's the priority. That's what we want them to crack.  
  Because I think we all know this that if you can get the content, if you can do really great content, whether it's blogs or videos or podcasts, then social, you've got something to talk about. You've got something to share on social media as well. So we really look at that as a priority.  
Jay: For you, when you're trying to promote the academy and/or your events, one of the things that you mentioned to us before the show is that you're starting to use LinkedIn more and I know it was something that you put in a backseat role in your own use as a social for a while. But now you're starting to elevate it more. Do you want to talk a little bit about why that is and what you're seeing now in LinkedIn that maybe you didn't see previously?  
Chris: Sure. So the transition for me with LinkedIn is actually that I was quoted recently in an article that said something like LinkedIn is where your sense of humor goes to die. And that's how I really had LinkedIn. That was my perception of LinkedIn, it was just ... That's not me. I'm not a suit and boot. It's like back here being a "professional." So when I went to LinkedIn, it just didn't feel, like it was a distant feeling. My people are there, but I think there's definitely a change in the platform in terms of what people are expecting to find there. And maybe it's getting a little bit lighter in terms of the attitudes there too. So we're starting to see a change there.  
  But also, things like a couple of big things. Video is changing on LinkedIn. I think they're doing some really interesting things there. I'm finding that organically, my content is reaching more people on LinkedIn so there's a lot of interesting things there. And also, really if you want to be proactive on LinkedIn you can really build a brilliant network there on LinkedIn as well because of the search function, going down into second and third connections who people are connected to, their professions, location in the world. Just upgrading to a premium account gives you so much access to your network. And that's honestly not something ...  
  If we were to have this conversation two weeks ago, this was not something I was doing. This has been a very, very recent change for me in how I've looked at LinkedIn. And I'm stunned to see the potential there for an increase in my own referral network. And my readership for content.  
Jay: Have you done anything with LinkedIn paid? We had AJ Wilcox on the show a few months ago and was talking a lot about the new LinkedIn advertising capabilities. And given that you're trying to reach a very specific type of person in a specific location, with a specific event pitch, per se, that it might be something interesting for you to try.  
Chris: Definitely. I think that paid, generally speaking, is kind of on our list. But up until now, we have done almost no paid advertising to build our business. So it's not something I even observe. It's on the list but it's not something we're even remotely considering.  
Jay: You mentioned to us that when you are doing the event, so when the event is taking place, you actually do some advertising to people who are in marketing, people who are not at the event. Can you describe that a little bit? I was fascinated by that premise.  
Chris: Yeah. The interesting thing about what we've done is that we've always been pulled towards doing paid ads for our events. And people say just get your paid ads out there, do some real targeting. And up until now, I've always felt like there's more organic stuff that we could do. We've never really maxed, I don't think. And so a good example of this is when we're at our live event, so our live event is a two day event based in Edenbrough, in Scotland, CMA live. And we have a dedicated team of people who work on social.  
  We have one core person who literally sits there for two whole days and their only job is social media and they're so objective as to market to people who are not there. Not in the room. That's their number one objective. So that's core images, sharing some live clips, photographs. And the photographer in the room is feeding this social media person with images from the room and the speakers and we're getting that out into social courts. All that kind of good stuff. And like I said, the number one objective that she has is to market and promote it to people that aren't there.  
  And the number one reason for that is so that they will sign up to the waiting list for when we're going to launch the tickets for the following year. So the objective there is to get people who are sitting on the fence. And you guys probably know this as well, if you've been doing live events for a while, some people don't buy into your live event for like two or three years because they want to see you actually do the thing. They want social proof. There's people that will come in first and buy your tickets, your hard core audience. There's people that just don't make a decision for a long, long time.  
  So we're aware of that. Every single year, even four, five years down the line we know there's people that have been hanging on the fence for years wanting to come along and that's the people we're marketing to during our event. And it works every time. They go to the website, they add their names to the waiting list and they're the first people to get the early bird pre-sale tickets for the following year.  
Adam: So, Chris, you're actually seeing a lot of your repeat customers, maybe, watching the visual, the streaming version of the event and then actually coming physically to visit you in person?  
Chris: Yeah, that's exactly it. It's about us looking to ... Basically the concept here is that every single live event that we do is a huge marketing activity. It's a huge expense and a huge marketing activity. So to get the most from that, we really want to make sure we get the reach out there, get all the content out to everyone that's there. But we always do this. We've got a specific strategy around building a waiting list. We're continually, all the time, building that waiting list. Even right now, people are adding themselves to a waiting list for our events. And we never ever stop building that list. To the point where we want to become oversubscribed all the time.  
  So if we've only got 200 places at our events, 200 seats, we're constantly building the list of people that are saying please tell me when the tickets are available for these events. So it's a continual thing for us. So it's repeat customers, it's referrals, it's people who are sharing content online. It's their friends, their friends' friends who are telling people about the amazing time that they've had at our event and that they should come next year. So it's a word of mouth referral, social selling, relationship selling. Whatever you want to call it, that's our core strategy when it comes to marketing.  
Adam: Chris, when I talk to a lot of my friends who do a lot of events and things like that, four, five, six years ago they said, Gosh, we are not very optimistic about those live physical events. Everything's going to happen online with streaming events, virtual events. But quite frankly, the opposite has happened. And I would say, as we're here on the cusp of Dream Force, our SalesForce event with lots of people coming to San Francisco, there's that networking. It's meeting other people who are like you and having those actual interactions. And not just at the conference or the event, but outside the trade show floor at restaurants, at bars and things like that.  
  Are you seeing the same thing with your events at Content Marketing Academy? That those actual physical events are so meaningful for your guests?  
Chris: Hundred percent. There's no doubt that a live event is like a triggering event for people. So say for example, SalesForce. You guys run an entirely different event than we run over here. But I think that a lot of the principles are the same. You want your best people, you could call them your customers, your clients, you want them to meet each other face to face. They end up doing business with each other, they become friends with each other. And for a live event like ours, we make it so accessible to people that they become friends with even the speakers and the key note speakers.  
  So totally, the live event experience is something very special and people want to have experiences. I mean, if you look at the way the world is going now as well, online events, all the content that's online, how do you differentiate, how do you get people to go to a live event? It's not strictly always for the content or the delivery from a speaker. It's got to be about something else. The only thing that technology can't replace, I think, is our in person experience. And i think that's truly, as we go forward, what people will actually pay for. Pay hundreds of pounds or hundreds of dollars to go to these live events because it's an experience. And that's what they want to have.  
  And it's mixed up with a lot of things, the content from the speaker, and the people they meet and the stories that they tell there and afterwards.  
Adam: That being said, with the value of that actual in person event, a lot of us as marketing, we try to bookend events like that. So we say how can we take that one day or one hour or if it's a couple of days event and make it longer and more meaningful for a longer time? So we do things on the front end and then after. What are the things that you do with your events at Content Marketing Academy that do that bookend types of things? Where you're rewarding and recognizing and helping your guests anticipate but also on the back end, keeping that positive experience going so that they'll be more likely at the next annual event to re-up.  
Chris: Do you mean in terms of delivering extra content or more pre-event and post-event activities?  
Adam: I think that's a great point, Chris. It's both of those things. And I think in many instances those are social types of things. Those are posts, those are tweets, those are maybe using a form or a community to try to keep that excitement and enthusiasm going.  
Chris: Got it. Yeah and I think it's a really important point. One of the things a lot of events do is they have advanced workshops around the core event. So that's something that we're actually just bridging into. Going back to our earlier conversation about how we're elevating our content for our audience. So we've gotten into more advanced workshops. So we'll have the core event and we're going to have a post event, more advanced workshop for people that need that sort of thing.  
  But generally speaking, what we do with our events, this is something that's a real concern of mine. When you run a live event, half of our tickets are sold one year in advance. So that's four or five hundred pounds that someone spent, six or seven hundred dollars that someone has spent on a ticket 12 months in advance of the actual event. So I have this, and it's been there forever, since we started doing live events. I get to three months out from the event and I think to myself, if I had spent 500 pounds nine months ago, does that 500 pounds still feel the same that it does now?  
  And really the point that I'm making here is they could quite easily say you know what, I'm just going to write that 500 pounds off and not go because you've still got your flight so your accommodation, your travel, and all of those expenses plus time to of the office as well because we've done a two day event. So I think that is a huge thing in my head about three months out. And we start marketing to the people that have already got tickets.  
Jay: Because it's not about the money. You still sell the seat, right? You don't want to have a half empty room.  
Chris: Exactly. Exactly. So we need to make sure that they're going to come for definite. And we have to market them. So we have sequences of email. Email marketing is big. And we talk about social media and this is what this is about. But email is what underpins all of our activity. It's the number one channel for us in terms of communication. So we are remarketing to all of the people that bought tickets in the past because we know, unconscious as well, I've done it. I've done it where I paid for a ticket for something and I look out the window and I'm like you know what? I'm not going. You know? Especially in Scotland. It takes a lot of effort for people to leave their home or their office.  
  So we are remarketing to the people in advance. So that's sort of our pre-event activities. We do a lot of countdown stuff. That's typical of events. Counting down the days to the event all across social, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, email.  
  And there are post event activities that are interesting as well. And it's something that we try to do a lot of, especially with my own philosophy of social is that I try to make all of our social activity and our marketing not about me or us, the CMA, and make it about other people. And so a big part of what we do is to elevate others. So for example, our photographer will blast them to take pictures of people interacting. Hugging, shaking hands, talking with each other.  
  And we share those pictures. We don't, for example take 500 pictures and just dump them into an album on Facebook. I'll drip them out for weeks, tagging individual people and telling a little story. And I'll be like remember that time when you first met Eva for the first time, Carole? And show a picture of them hugging in the room for the first time and trying, really, just to get as much leverage out of the stories that can be told through the photography and sometimes the video as well. But we're really trying to get as much from it as we can. As much as all of the content that we create.  
  And I know there's even more than we can do. So there's a lot that goes into the pre-event stuff and the post event content that we create to really just get people excited about it. Because the campaign for next year's even starts on the day that the current event ends. In fact, we launch the tickets at lunch time on the final day of our event. So I've still got 30 days of marketing to do that month before the tickets close. So I'm constantly just dripping out the images.  
  And it's not onerous, it's not a laborous task. I just have to do one or two images a day, tag people in it, tell a story. And it's not huge amount of work. And it works amazing. It works really, really well. If you build it then you can do a session on that.  
Jay: I'm doing a session in January called the 365 day event, exactly how to do what you're talking about for event planners. There will be thousands and thousands of people there. I've got to talk to you, Chris, when I get ready to start working on my slides. And I think we're going to go do an online course for meeting planners about how to do those things too. So maybe we should partner on that. I'll talk to you about it.  
Chris: That's cool. Yeah. Sounds awesome.  
Adam: I love that whole concept, Chris and Jay. And I think we can apply that to almost any type of industry. The idea that the day you're closing a sale cycle is actually the first day of beginning that next sale cycle. There's I think a lot to be learned and gleaned from that. Chris, one last question before I hand it back over to Jay, one of the things that we've done at SalesForce, is our state of marketing reports. It's our fourth annual research project where we talk to about 3,500 chief marketing officers, chief communications officers around the world in small, medium and large industries. And one of the things they told us this year is that CMO's are moving their organizations from focusing on channels, like having a social team and a digital team and a web team and a traditional team and a communications team, to really talking more about journeys. This idea of remarketing, or new customer acquisition and things like that.  
  I'm curious, Chris, for where you sit with talking to content marketers. Are you seeing the same thing? Is today's content marketer more likely to be what we would traditionally call a social person or somebody more in traditional? And do you see those kind of roles and hierarchies and maybe the fact that the word social appears on someone's business card not being as much the case in two or three years?  
Chris: I think it's a really good question. We work with a certain number of in house marketers when we're teaching content marketing. And I do believe that content is the core of what they're working on. Social media seems to be less, not less important, but just not on their radar so much. So I think when it comes to social media or social media marketers, especially the ones we work with, they call themselves social media marketing people, they are leaning way more towards, actually I would say our content marketers. So the whole social aspect of their job title or their business that they actually run, I find that they are leaning far more towards advising their clients on content and social. So I think part of that, what you're saying there is that we will find social, that word might get dropped from…  
Jay: I think eventually it no longer requires the centralization that titles and departments dictate.  
Chris: Yeah. Exactly. I mean, we've got a few people that we work with that would call themselves social media managers or social media marketers. I honestly think it's a non-title. It doesn't mean anything.  
Jay: For this very podcast is SalesForce Marketing cloud who has a new e-book called More than Marketing, exploring the five roles of the new marketer. It's all about the five new essential marketing skills that all of us need to possess. There's interviews in there, there's stories, there's interactive features, even in this e-book. Immediately actionable steps to master these five new talents. You can pick it up for free right now at c&c.ly/newmarketer. That's c&c.ly/newmarketer.  
  Also, a reminder of our new podcast in our podcast network called the Experience This Show, hosted by Dan Ginges and Joey Coleman. It's all about fantastic customer experiences that brands deliver to their customers when they least expect it. Lots of interesting and interactive segments. You can call into the show, you can upload audio clips. It's super fun. Check it out. ExperienceThisShow.com or find it wherever you get your podcasts. Just look for Experience This Show.  
  Adam, back to you.  
Adam: Jay, thank you. And Chris Marr, so great to have you on the show. Founder of CMA, Content Marketing Academy in Europe. Chris, I was fascinated looking at your resume at some of the things that you shared with us as you got started. You've been running Content Marketing Academy. In fact you've been running your own business for well over a decade. You had been involved in social on Facebook since it's inception in the UK. You also told us that your personal career has run the gamete from gymnastics to being lead guitar in a death metal band. I've got to ask you, how did you get to this point today?  
Chris: Yeah, it's been interesting, right? So the whole death metal thing, it's always there for me. I have all my guitar equipment. And it's still a hobby now that I'm set up. I don't think I'm ever going to be in a touring metal band. I think I'm just going to have to sit that one out. But it's still a massive influence for me and everything I do.  
  I think my transition's really simple. I was in a management role from when I was 19 years old, being put in front of audiences, training development, leadership development, all that stuff. Team building. And I loved my job. And I've taken a lot of that from my career when I was 19 through when I was 29. I'm 36 now. And I've taken a lot of those skills that I've learned along the way just to build the business that I want to.  
  So the key transition for me was when social media became a thing. I was looking back just before this call. I was like when did I actually join Facebook and when did I actually start there? And it was March 2005 was when my first post was on Facebook. I as fortunate enough to be part of the University of Saint Andrews, a college in the UK and that's how Facebook rolled out, to the colleges first. And then I think from that point forward it just really grabbed me. I don't know why. It might have just been the right age at the right time. And one of my biggest influences at the very start was Gary Vinechok. And I read his book Crusher and that really got me started off on blogging and Chris Brogan and all of these people that were there from there really start really influenced me to start thinking about content, blogs, social media could be a part of my future.  
  I never, ever thought that I would be an entrepreneur or a business person 10 years ago. It wasn't really an objective. I wasn't like I'm going to go start my own business. It happened very organically from helping small businesses in my spare time to just a few events that happened. I had an opportunity to leave my role and full time employment. I went to University and studied my degree and a few different enterprises. And all of that learning and some failures along the way just helped me to understand what it was that I wanted to do. So it took me probably about ...  
  You know how you get people, there are entrepreneurs that say, you know…  
Jay: It's also stupid advice. It's just bad advice. I mean, it doesn't make a lot of sense, right? There's people who are very, very successful who have a selection bias. Oh it worked for me so it'll definitely work for you. Although, I will say that Gary Vanderchuck was here on episode 96 and episode 212 of Social Pros. So if you wanted to check it out, ladies and gentlemen, go into the archives at SocialPros.com.  
Chris: Yeah that was sort of a snippet of my journey. And like I said, it wasn't always there but there was a few events, a few life events that took place between 2005 and 2009 that really helped me figure out who I was and what I wanted to do.  
Adam: One other thing that impresses me about you, Chris, about Jay, about Sue B. Zimmerman, who we had on the show last week, and the people that us poke about, Chris Brogman, Gary Vee and the likes, are that so oftentimes, people like all of you, that are in this industry are training people like me on how to use social media, how to harness it, how to use content effectively. Sometimes the cobbler's kids go barefoot. Sometimes, professionals that are instructors are so focused on the teaching that they don't actually practice the same skills. Have you found anything, as an entrepreneur, have you found anything is running a business of your size, that you have to remind yourself that, gosh, this is what I tell people each and every day but I always seem to forget it?  
Chris: I remember I had a conversation with someone before I started this business. It's probably been six years ago. And I sat down with him and I had this, it was a general conversation. I thought to myself, I want to be the type of marketer that practices what they preach. And that's been there from the very start of my business. I never wanted to be the type of teacher or educator or advisor that doesn't do the things that ...  
  So for example, if I'm trying to convince someone that content marketing works, let me show you that it works for my business as well. And I think it's always been there for me, Adam, just to make sure that I do practice what I preach. It's a big deal for me. I think a lot of marketers do get away with it somehow. And Jay expressed ...  
Jay: How to balance the content and the social that I do for my own channels versus what I do for Convince and Convert. Do you ever sit around and ponder should I put this on Chris Marr's account or on CMA's account? Because I know I struggle with it.  
Adam: Makes me feel better, it's even marginally better.  
Jay: Thank you.  
Chris: Yeah, all the time. All the time. And I think when we're doing the CMA type of content, especially on social, it really takes a kick up when we've got live events, Jay. So we use our core branded CMA social channels for our live event stuff. And I think I'm still in the season I'm in in business, I think a lot of people buy because of me. So a lot of it is relative to my own social activity. So I'm doing the live videos, I'm on Instagram stories, I'm on Facebook. Whatever it is, I'm the one that people are buying from, listening to, and being influenced by. So I think we made a decision a while back to make sure that I double down on my personal brand, essentially. And the CMA stuff kicks in, mainly, with our pre and post and during the event.  
Adam: Chris, not to change the subject entirely, but I want to ask you one question that I think is interesting. Because, from where you sit, on the other side of the drink, at least from Jay and I, are you might have a slightly different perspective. Certainly over the past year, we've seen so many heavy stories. Whether it was the presidential elections here in the United States, whether it was Brixit, whether it was some of the weather tragedies that we've had and other accidents. I'm curious how you council companies that you're working with to handle situations like that. Because we've seen those situations really capitalize themselves in social media. And some brands have tried to tip toe around those, some have addressed it whole hog, some have said we're gonna take the high road and not be involved in those types of things. How do you council, hey what's your perspective from where you sit and secondly, how do you council organizations to stay away or to appropriately participate?  
Chris: It's a really good question. One of the best examples of this is in the equality conversations that are happening online. Even just today, Harvey Weinstein and the abused women and all of that stuff, it happens in all industries I think. So that's like a conversation that we absolutely need to be having. So you take the politics, take all of that stuff. What we do, I think this is one of the best ways to do this and it's a hot topic right now. We have a lot of those conversations with each other in private. So in our community, the people that we're advising and teaching, we have created specific threads and channels for things like these topics. So we'll create a thread on Harvey Weinstein are we'll create a thread on whatever political event is happening or whatever's bad about the world. And we have a conversation about it.  
  And this is something I've had to get to grips with as well because even things like the gender agenda, that's a big topic. I don't know anything about it and therefore I wasn't talking about it. And I said to myself, we need to be having this conversation at least in private so that when we go into the public forums, we have a good idea of what our position is and how to have an articulate conversation and debate about that subject.  
  So we are counseling people in private to help them understand even their own position on this and how they feel about it so that when they go into a public forum they're better armed and better educated about it. And so I think that's how we deal with it. And I think that's a good way to do it so we're not going out just firing guns and getting involved in discussions when we don't actually know anything about it. We're sharing information with each other, we're helping each other to understand these ...  
Jay: To the US for events, content marketing world, etc. do you see any meaningful differences that you'd want to bring up here as we close out the show between what's happening in social in content marketing in the UK versus what happens here in the US?  
Chris: Yeah it's really interesting to see the differences actually. We've just been out in the states. We were at Inbound and we're at B to B market and profits event as well. Great event. And there are some differences. I think the main one is probably the technical element of content. So data. Data driven analytics and decision making around data. I think, from what I can tell from the presentations and the discussions I've had that seems to be a little bit further ahead than the discussions that we're having over here in the UK. I'd say that was the main one.  
  But I think in different categories, sometimes we're ahead in the UK, sometimes we're behind. Sometimes America's ahead on some things and sometimes they're behind on other things. I think culturally there are differences across the pond. So it's interesting.  
Jay: Yeah it's because of companies like. Hey, look, robots are gonna take our jobs so we might as well get with the program now. Chris, I'm gonna ask you the two questions that we've asked every single guest on this show, almost 300 episodes now. The first one, I think you're gonna knock this one out of the park, what one tip would you give somebody who's looking to become a social pro?  
Chris: My number one tip for anyone that's getting into social is to remove yourself from the equation. Drop the eagle and .  
Jay: I love that. I couldn't agree more. Last question for you, Chris Marr, head of the Content Marketing Academy, CMA is if you could do a Skype video call with any living person, who would it be and why?  
Adam: Yeah, good one.  
Chris: So many people. That's just one of them, for sure. And I think ...  
Jay: Yeah, that's a great one. I think I would be right on that show...we'll make that happen. We'll get you on video with Ryan Holiday after we get him on Social Pros. You can be on the show and help interview him, how about that?  
  Chris, thanks so much for being on the program. Congratulations on all the success. Ladies and gentlemen, check out CMA, Chris' events, all the stuff that he's doing. We'll link it up in the show notes, of course at socialpros.com.  
Chris: That'd be cool if you could do it.
Jay: Thanks, as always, to all of you for your support and access to your ears. On behalf of Mr. Adam Brown from SalesForce Marketing Cloud, I'm Jay Bear from Convince and Convert and this has been Social Pros.  
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