Interview with Matt Siltala: See Him Speak at @Pubcon NOLA

Matt-SiltalaMatt Siltala is the Owner/President of Avalaunch Media and he will be speaking at Pubcon NOLA on Tuesday March 18, 11:30a 12:45p in Salon C. You can also see him on Tuesday from 4-5pm in Salon F for Site Reviews – Focusing on Content Marketing and Development.

Matt is well known and respected for his experience and knowledge about content marketing and social media. Because he is such a brilliant guy we thought we would pick his brain a bit about content marketing and see what we could learn.

You are speaking at Pubcon NOLA about Content Marketing. Can you give us some hints on what you will be discussing?

As most people know, my company, Avalaunch Media specializes in visual content marketing. Things like infographics, interactive graphics, videos & motion graphics. I am obsessed with visual content and these are the things I will be getting into during my presentation. I will be sharing best practices, case studies and tips for staying ahead of the competition.

What content marketing mistakes are you hoping businesses will avoid making in 2014?

The thing that frustrates me the most is people putting up 300 word blog posts with no thought and calling it good in the content marketing department. They don’t use imagery, they don’t answer questions their community is answering, and they are not being helpful. Understanding the things that people are wanting to consume in your specific industry is key, and then coming up with an editorial calendar around that is crucial, and sticking to that calendar is even more critical. You will build up a better audience when people know they can turn to you for consistent information.

Which content marketing strategy do you feel people still don’t quite understand?

I think the fact that people look at things like infographics or videos as “tactics”. They are not tactics, they are part of marketing and an overall strategy when done right. You don’t just do “an infographic” hoping it gets you all the links or brand mentions you could ever want or need, because you typically will fail every time doing that. A plan needs to be in place whether your content is PPTs, white papers, memes, ebooks, infographics or video it is important to remember none of these are “tactics” and that they are all part of “marketing”.

Your company, Avalaunch, makes many beautiful and effective infographics. Can you tell us what you think has to be improved when it comes to infographics?

avalaunchA story needs to be told, and this is where I think a lot of infographics fail. They are thrown together too quickly and they are not thought out or researched out well. Big fonts and big numbers is not data visualization.

When you have a story board you can give your infographic designer that is easy to understand and follow, you will make that data so easy to consume and the public will love it and share it until the cows come home.

What are 3 general recommendations you could make to any business in regards to content marketing?

First one is make sure you do good research, second understand the social network or community that you want the content do well on and third stick to your editorial calendar. Again, consistency is the key here. I often talk about content marketing being like a game of baseball. Most of the time you are going to hit singles and doubles, but every once in a while you will hit a home run or a grand slam. Sticking to an editorial calendar will help build a community so you have more chances for home runs.

If people want to learn more about effective content marketing strategies what resources would you recommend?

In all honesty my best resources are paying attention to the major social networks that are out there. I really understand what is doing well on major social networks like Pinterest & Instagram I would pay attention how imagery is being used for example, since these are very visual networks. I recognize what kind of content is being shared the most on specific networks and do my best to create the same type of sharable content. I am not copying what they are doing, only getting ideas and figuring out how to make that work for my clients communities. So the recommendation would be to pay attention to top content that is being passed around and shared on major social networks.

Do you have any recommendations for Pubcon NOLA attendees?

My biggest recommendation to anyone attending is to make sure and say hi to the presenters. They are normal human beings just like you and most of them. I’ve learned that if you buy them a beer, they will just about tell you anything. Also, plan out the sessions you want to attend, with multiple tracks going on, deciding on the spot which session to go to could cause you difficulties. Oh and bring plenty of extra battery power. Most of all have fun and don’t spend all your time in the conference center, see where dinners are taking place and where the parties are going on at and enjoy the city!

Fun Questions – (conference fodder)

Biggest Pet Peeve – being asked what my biggest pet peeve is. 🙂
Mac or PC? – Mac all the way baby
Beach or Snow? –  I don’t know what this thing you call snow is??
Beer, Wine or Neither? – I am boring – don’t drink.
Star Wars or Star Trek? – Star Wars
Beer or Wine? – I think you were drinking when you put this together cause you already asked that above 🙂

Thanks Matt!

We really appreciate your time and awesome responses. We will see you on March 18th! If you haven’t been able to hear Matt speak yet I highly recommend you go see him at Pubcon! You can also check out his past presentations on Slideshare.

About Melissa Fach

AuthorityLabs Community Jedi - Melissa Fach is the owner of SEOAware, LLC that specializes in consulting and training businesses. She is also the Community Jedi at AuthorityLabs, the Social Community Manager for Pubcon, a past Editor of Search Engine Journal and a big cat volunteer. You can find her on Twitter @SEOAware.

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Matt Siltala

Hey thanks for having me, also I take back my comment about biggest pet peeve … my biggest pet peeve is when I am driving and some idiot cuts me off! 🙂

Janet Thaeler

Nice interview Mat, your presentations are always so interesting and useful. Plus you walk the talk (your presentations are gorgeous, esp for business presentations). I love a lot of case studies and data.

I’d add one more thing to what everyone should do who goes to this or another conference. Share what you learn by tweeting, writing a blog post about the ideas or tips that helped the most or post on Facebook. The more you share the more it reinforces what you learn. There’s always so much information and networking that it’s easy to forget most of the content and not implement it in your work.

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