Digital DNA Live Blog on The Art of Persuasion

Whatever industry you operate in, striking the balance between keeping your existing audience happy yet innovating for growth and attracting new customers is key. This panel discussion looks at that ‘Art of Persuasion’.

Hosted by Yvette Shapiro from Belfast Telegraph joined by Ryan Owens from tech giant Google focusing on customer solutions and innovation; Mark Wright BBC Apprentice winner (2014) who runs digital marketing agency Climb Online; Nicola McCarthy Senior Broadcast Journalist from Manchester City Football Club; Youtube creator Zach Nelson known for his popular phone repair channel JerryRigEverything and Mandy Gilbert from Creative Niche digital focused recruitment agency and partner in the Vancouver-based Red Academy, digital media and tech school. (Twitter links below).

Art of Persuasion Panel #DigitalDNA
Art of Persuasion Panel #DigitalDNA

Nicola kicked off on engaging with football fans at Man City. Local passionate supporters a core audience but as one of the fastest growing football teams in the world also on reaching out to new supporters. They engage directly with local supporter groups and get their input on what they want to see.

Given the global reach of google, Ryan is asked about how you still give a personal experience. For google and youtube, Ryan explained the tailoring of content based on location and interests. Linking to youtube, Zach asked about how he developed a career from Youtube. Firstly he hit it at the right time but also with the increase use of smartphones, they break and need fixed so it is a useful tool. Getting subscribers is more difficult but having a direct call to action in the video allows viewers to engage and link in more.

As a digital agency, Yvette asks Mark how they get companies message in front of people through digital marketing. Starting by addressing the competitive market even for digital agencies, Mark recalls hearing at an event recently that “It is not good enough to satisfy your customers you need to amaze them.”

Linking to what Mark said on competition, Mandy explains how Creative Niche started off with $8000 growing to $10 million, 14 years later. The creative, digital focused recruitment agency, ‘focus on making matches that last, rather than focus on filling positions, fast.’

You need to get in front of people as experts in the industry, which is what Mark did on the apprentice. Over 14 weeks, he was seen by 9 million people as the digital marketing expert. Similarly with events like #DigitalDNA, speaking and taking part helps make connections with the right people.

Being embedded in the club gives Nicola at Man City a unique platform to report from. Inside City, which goes out every Friday night gives fans the insider story of what is happening in the club. Continually innovating with use of facebook live etc and balancing that with more traditional documentary style coverage.

Question on ad blocking and how that is affecting business. Ryan responds that the ad messaging needs to be right and considered across platform so that when customers do engage.

Developing relationship is key for Mandy at Creative Niche with some of their top clients having been with them from the early days. Knowing about people, what they need and finding the right place or position for them. 60% of their business comes from word of mouth.

Personal service is the USP (Unique Selling Point) for Climb Online, Mark explains how they go into the business do a needs analysis and then customise solution to fit those needs. Key customers came from investing time with the companies.


For someone starting out on youtube what advice would you give, Zach?

  • Consistency – you need to keep posting regularly.
  • Tailor you content e.g. 3-5min vidoes on youtube .
  • Do something you are passionate about.

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  • Yvette Shapiro @yvetteshapiro @BelTel
  • Nicola McCarty @Mccarthy_mcfc @MCFC
  • Mandy Gilbert @verynichey @creativeniche @redacademy
  • Ryan Owens @google
  • Mark Wright @Mark_E_Wright @Climb_Online
  • Zack Nelson @ZacksJerryRig

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