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Marketers interested in learning about how technology can help with their content marketing efforts got a little help this week from the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) and ContentTECH 2015.

Hosted by CMI, ContentTECH is a one-day virtual conference, complete with live online sessions, a virtual exhibit hall, live chats, networking opportunities and even conference prizes.

Sessions and live chats covered topics such as developing unified strategies between marketing and technology, the role of content in delivering the customer experience and making sense of technology and humanity.

Rather than recap the sessions and chats, all of which may be found on the ContentTECH site, we thought we’d let you hear from the attendees and presenters yourself.

From the Networking Lounge

CMSWire spent some time during the conference hanging out in the Networking Lounge. While we were there, we asked a few experts to share with us their most interesting takeaway from the day so far. Here’s what they shared.

Data-Driven Content Marketing 

2015-27-February-Chad-Smith.jpgChad Smith
, Director of Content, Imprint Content

“In 2015 there are multiple resources and tools available to help with content marketing efforts, but you have to really understand the goal of the business to know which tools make the most sense. The output of those tools should ultimately support a continuous data-driven content marketing program.”

Unified Strategies 

2015-27-February-Jeannine-Rossignol.jpgJeannine Rossignol
, Vice President, Marketing Services for Large Enterprise Operations, Xerox Corporation

“Marketing and technology have to unify and rally around a single strategy. Great technology can’t fix bad content, nor can great content deliver results without technology.”

Personalized Content and Personas

2015-27-February-Rita-Rosenberg.jpgRita Rosenberg
, Chief Content Officer, Crimson Marketing

"The most interesting insight I’ve come across today has been in the chat session with Scott Abel. The group got on the topic of customer personas and how we as marketers use them to explain anything from website design to campaign content.

"Personas are there to help the everyday life of the marketer. But Scott brought up this fantastic point: ‘YOU need them. The people trapped in them don't care. I'm not a persona. I'm a person. Are you trying to get my loyalty or the loyalty of the persona?'

"He went on to say: ‘Personalized content is the goal. Personalized to the person, not the group of imaginary people we hope to reach.’

"To me, this seems so obvious, but at the same time, it dawned on me, that very few of us actually do this. And even less of us understand how to execute this successfully.

"A few last words from Scott on the topic: ‘If we are able to merge customer data, patterns, behaviors, and predictive analysis, I think we will rely less on the psychic-powered personas we conjure up. The future is going to be really interesting in this regard.’”

From the Live Chat Room

The conference included six live scheduled chat sessions on topics such as content marketing and customer experience, influencer marketing, interactive content, and marketing automation.

Here are the highlights from a few of these sessions.

Interactive Content

2015-27-February-Scott-Brinker.jpg Scott Brinker
, co-founder and CTO, ion interactive

"Good interactive content — through the eyes of the participant — either (a) actually helps them learn something, such as an assessment tool might, in a way that's better than just passively reading about it, or (b) provides something genuinely entertaining (like a fun little game).”

The Role of the Marketing Technologist 

2015-27-February-Jason-Stewart.jpgJason Stewart
, VP, ANNUITAS

“Sharing content via nurture or through multiple channels should NEVER be a 'set it and forget it' situation – especially when the technology tools we use provide so much data we can now leverage to improve performance.

"That's the key thing here, and why the 'marketing technologist' role is getting so much attention. We need someone to collect and interpret the vast amounts of data we are collecting from all these disparate systems, and it has to be someone who understands how marketing works in the first place."

Engaging Influencers 

2015-27-February-Amanda-Maksymiw.jpgAmanda Maksymiw
, Content Marketing Manager, Lattice Engines

“On engaging influencers, it's important to remember that you can't just dive in and make a major request. It's all about building the relationship over time. You can do this by commenting on their content, sharing or retweeting it, introducing yourself at a live event, or blogging about their content or sessions.”

Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License Title image by  ARTwear.ch.