Content Leader Takes Team From Lonely Silo to Powerful Presence

Editor’s notice: We’re sharing insights from Content Marketer of the Year finalists on the weblog earlier than we announce the winner at Content Marketing World in September. This is the primary yr we are going to title a Content Marketer of the Year in two classes – B2B and B2C. 

For an organization that prides itself on its community-powered method to offering enterprise know-how, Red Hat discovered its content material crew remoted and siloed.

Laura Hamlyn, director of the corporate’s international content material crew inside company advertising and marketing, set out to change that and to set up a coherent voice for the model. She had to make that tiny crew matter to the enterprise. Barely seven years later, Laura is a finalist for 2019 B2B Content Marketer of the Year.

Why she caught our eye: A dynamic inventive chief with a pure expertise for uplifting these round her, Laura constructed Red Hat’s content material crew from a handful of individuals taking content material orders from product advertising and marketing and the C-suite to a 50-person (and rising) strategic crew that creates significant interactions with the enterprise Linux neighborhood. Behind the scenes, she’s additionally devoted to much less “glamorous” particulars like UX, backend content material technique, and content material governance.

.@RedHat crew went from taking #content material orders to creating significant interactions below @LauraHamlyn management. Click To Tweet

How she constructed and structured her crew (and the inventive content material they produce) stands as a mannequin for different enterprise entrepreneurs.

Hard-coding the mission

That seemingly easy course – make the content material crew matter to the enterprise – includes layers of challenges. Laura knew she wanted a centered imaginative and prescient and aims for her new crew. She discovered them within the firm’s mission.

Red Hat goals to be the defining know-how firm of the 21st century by creating programs and processes that spur innovation by democratizing entry to content material. The firm emphasizes collaborative innovation, which implies it shares concepts and innovations with the world. In return, it will get perception and entry to new concepts from builders, prospects, and leaders outdoors of its company construction.

To assist this lofty mission, Laura noticed a possibility to construct a content material crew devoted to creating significant and interesting interactions with know-how customers and consumers on the corporate’s web site. She inspired the crew to capitalize on Red Hat’s sturdy collaborative tradition, working throughout departments to develop and execute concepts.

Four years in the past, Laura charged her crew with making a dynamic editorial program for the web site. Pulling it off required concepts and work throughout the product and portfolio advertising and marketing, net expertise, advertising and marketing operations, and buyer reference groups. Working collectively, they recognized related subjects and set measurable key efficiency indicators (KPIs).

Based on present developments, massive concepts, and data-driven analysis, the crew selects key subjects associated to the “Red Hat conversations” (their manner of aligning content material themes or taxonomies throughout advertising and marketing and gross sales). The result’s an internet site full of content material that guests can filter and navigate in accordance to their enterprise challenges or questions fairly than by product solely.

.@RedHat lets guests discover sources on web site by subjects, not merchandise, says @carlajohnson. #CMWorld Click To Tweet

You can learn an in depth account of how Red Hat modified its taxonomy to assist this customer-first method on this latest article. This instance illustrates the outcomes for a customer who seeks content material on IT optimization:

To sustain with new requests and be certain that the web site content material is up to date, Laura’s crew works alongside designers and UXers in scrum and Kanban groups with session from analysts and an web optimization program proprietor. This method works effectively at a tech firm accustomed to Agile methodologies.

The crew shares a quarterly progress report and plans for the upcoming quarter that embrace a recap of the content material produced (and what was deliberate however not produced) and particulars on the efficiency of the content material on all the most important subjects coated in the course of the quarter. A map outlines the anticipated funnel circulate, and information from Red Hat’s advertising and marketing analysts present the outcomes at every stage/ingredient of the map as quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year modifications.

The web site’s content material is enriched and supported by an built-in advertising and marketing method that features social media, natural optimization, and paid promotion. The quarterly report explains the impression of every ingredient.

As a results of this openness and collaboration, the content material crew is now an integral a part of the core enterprise.


Choosing the proper operators

Laura’s rising crew handles a wide range of content material features, together with creation, curation, content material technique, model affinity, and story growth. She structured her crew into these 4 teams.

Corporate messaging and steering

A specialised, centralized crew focuses on creating cohesive messaging to assist gross sales conversations. This crew creates gross sales enablement decks, templates for all collateral, and a messaging index that clarifies merchandise, concepts and ideas, and a shared vocabulary. 

The crew consists of content material writers, editors, and a associate advertising and marketing supervisor.

Content advertising and marketing and story growth

This crew creates authentic, worthwhile, and memorable content material that tells the model’s story. They focus their efforts on video writing, a podcast, social media, and promoting.

The crew consists of a supervisor and eight copywriters.

Digital content material technique

These content material strategists give attention to making a digital technique that promotes message and model consistency throughout the Red Hat web site, differentiation, and accountability for content material advertising and marketing efficiency.

The crew’s supervisor leads greater than 10 content material strategists.

Global content material technique

This crew leads Red Hat’s metadata and taxonomy efforts, automates processes, handles the construction and administration of all worldwide content material, and is vital to the worldwide narrative. They transcend merely translating content material to localizing it and making it related.

The crew features a senior supervisor of worldwide content material technique, an affiliate supervisor of content material governance and curation, a content material curator who writes Python scripts to automate course of handoffs and electronic mail notifications, a worldwide web optimization program proprietor who oversees non-English optimization, a localization program supervisor, two undertaking managers who oversee localization, and an affiliate supervisor who manages localization specialists for Brazilian Portuguese, worldwide Spanish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, and simplified Chinese.


Executing this system

Though Laura’s major position is to outline and construct the content material crew, she’s a author and content material creator at coronary heart. She studied journalism, labored at promoting and design companies, and was on in-house model groups earlier than becoming a member of Red Hat.

How may she not get excited concerning the tasks her crew produces? Here are a few her favourite (and award-winning) examples.

Command Line Heroes

When requested to assist the launch of the brand new Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), the content material crew felt impressed. RHEL is the world’s main enterprise Linux platform, an open-source working system that kinds a basis for scaling apps and rolling out new applied sciences in cloud environments.

Backed by insights that got here from Red Hat’s funding in investigating key audiences, understanding their demographics, and figuring out their most well-liked platforms, the crew settled on a podcast.

Command Line Heroes options tales about IT professionals – builders, system directors, and IT architects – who’ve formed the know-how panorama. The sequence’ objectives are to discover subjects essential to IT professionals from a historic perspective, additional Red Hat’s position as a promoter of the open-source growth mannequin, and to attain new audiences throughout podcast and audio platforms to drive visitors again to

Laura credit podcast host Saron Yitbarek as an enormous contributor to the undertaking’s success. Audiences discovered her relatable as a result of she’s one in all them. Saron is a developer, a storyteller, and the founding father of CodeNewbie, a supportive neighborhood of programmers and folks studying how to code.

When creating the podcast, the crew initially thought it could goal IT managers, system admins, and engineers, however they discovered that the tales – deep dives into how the tech business grew to become what it’s immediately – appealed to a wider viewers. One anecdote concerning the podcast’s success includes somebody’s mom listening to it to perceive the work her son does.

Despite its broad attraction, the viewers has shifted over time. The first two episodes centered on acquainted working system applied sciences and attracted an enormous viewers. Once episodes grew to become extra technical, the viewers grew to become extra area of interest. The new, extra focused viewers lets Laura’s crew give attention to content material that satisfies the wants of their supreme area of interest. In 2018, Command Line Heroes gained a Content Marketing Award for Best Content Marketing Program – Technology, and was a finalist for Best Podcast/Audio Series.

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Red Hat Shares

Though Red Hat despatched emails about product-related information, the corporate didn’t have an official company e-newsletter till Laura and crew created one. Red Hat Shares grew out of the concept to create a platform that may encourage Red Hat’s viewers members and provide a digital area the place they might share concepts.

The quarterly e-newsletter focuses on sharing, collaboration, and the open trade of concepts. Each subject features a assortment of high-level IT recommendation with an emphasis on open-source applied sciences with out overtly selling Red Hat choices. It consists of summaries and hyperlinks to authentic content material written by third events and Red Hatters. Red Hat Shares’ target market is IT leaders, however subscribers embrace a various set of titles (from CTOs to builders to architects to college students).

When measuring success, Laura seems at conventional metrics like subscriptions, opens, bounce charges, on-line engagement, and click-through charges. The common open fee for Red Hat Shares is 52.Three%, and the unsubscribe fee barely registers at .09%.

She doesn’t, nonetheless, fear concerning the complete variety of subscribers. Far extra essential is the expansion pattern (proper now a really wholesome 32% yr over yr).

The actual proof of the e-newsletter’s usefulness? This no-dedicated-budget undertaking has generated greater than $1 million in new enterprise. Sales are immediately affected by the emails, with $80,000 coming from prospects who interacted with the e-newsletter proper earlier than buying a associated product.

A no-dedicated-budget #electronic mail e-newsletter generated +$1 million in new enterprise at @RedHat. @LauraHamlyn #CMWorld Click To Tweet


Quality assurance pays off

By specializing in high quality over amount, Laura’s crew created an engaged neighborhood that spends time with Red Hat content material. Their subsequent steps embrace:

  • Securing funding to assist regional groups to promote content material globally
  • Increasing engagement with instructional content material (not simply marketing campaign content material)
  • Conducting a worldwide web optimization pilot to optimize schooling content material quarterly

Each ingredient of Laura and the crew’s success displays the time and care they’ve devoted to researching, connecting, empathizing, and galvanizing ­– each inside the corporate and out.

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Be there in individual to study who will win B2B and B2C Content Marketer of the Year. And when you’re at Content Marketing World Sept. Three-6, study expertise and instruments to broaden your individual content material advertising and marketing success. Register immediately utilizing code CMIBLOG100 to save $100. 

Cover picture by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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