A funny thing happened a few months back while combing through our "millions" of Twitter followers. A 'like' and 'follow' from a handle called Above The Fold popped up in our notifications. Come to find out, Brafton, a creative content marketing agency located in Boston, Chicago and San Francisco started their own podcast too. And when marketers combine forces, content creation is born.

See, it's possible for a little positivity to break through the noise of Twitter!

Above The Fold is hosted by Brafton's AVP of Marketing Jeff Baker and VP of Content Francis Ma. Jeff's the SEO/analytics side of the brain and Francis is the creative content side. Together they tackle digital marketing and media trends with their own brand of wisdom and wit. That's why it was no surprise to me that the combination of Jeff, Francis, Arty and John would lead to a mixed bag of ridiculous pop culture references, mild insanity and a censor beep.

I'm looking at you John. Next season we're implementing a swear jar.

But in between the wise cracks came loads of insight on the future of content marketing. Web analytics and SEO are proven to help content creators produce more valuable material for clients than a warm, fuzzy feeling. Those uneasy with the use of AI for marketing purposes are coming around despite their fears of SkyNet taking over the world.

Yet, my biggest takeaway from this conversation was the way Jeff and Francis could effectively communicate what's happening with content creation today and beyond.

It wasn't dry.

The hubris that can dominate a conversation about marketing analytics and tech was replaced with an engaging exchange of ideas. While none of these four podcast hosts are known to lack personality, it was refreshing to hear content marketers drive a discussion about data without being so data driven.

And a lack of personality isn't exactly a trait you want in your podcast host!

We've been caught in a neverending content marketing cycle where brevity ruled and quantity seemed to superceed quality. Creating content by the numbers using the latest trendy acronym was enough to breakthrough Silicon Valley algorithms. But 2018 seemed to reward the more creative, collaborative, story driven content that resonated with the human condition. I think that starts with the way we communicate as businesses, marketers and creatives. Injecting personality into the data may be a harder creative path to take. But it may be our best bet at keeping the machines from rising.

Above The Fold is available just about anywhere podcasts can be heard but do explore their website for all their episodes, extra content, articles and more!

Show Notes:

Arty and John welcome Jeff and Francis for our own little podcast roundtable about...

  • The content marketing strategy that fuels Brafton
  • How the hell does Jeff get internet where he lives
  • How web analytics can inform creative without lacking creativity
  • Putting yourself in a box to think outside the box and the inevitable 90's film reference
  • The rising value of producing e-books
  • Video marketing ROI and what it can mean for businesses
  • Who's an Eeyore about using AI for marketing
  • Will AI ever create content that can replace content creators
  • The part where John forces me to edit
  • Jeff's dream involving a Ron Burgundy styled library
  • What do content marketers binge watch
  • Jeff's advice for young professionals starting out in content marketing
  • The advice Francis gives that Jeff requested be edited as his idea (I didn't)

Subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts, GooglePlay or Stitcher