Speaker Spotlight: Amber Van Natten

Amber is one of the smartest content marketers out there, and we're delighted that she’s joining us onstage for Full Stack Marketing at the Turing Festival in August. The wonderful folk at Stipso quizzed her about her background, work and what she’s going to talk about on 21 August. Here's a snippet of what she told them..

What does NewsCred do?

NewsCred helps turn marketers into storytellers, and we do this in three main ways. We build a comprehensive content marketing platform where marketers can set up workflows, share content calendars, distribute content, and track their success. Within that platform we also offer custom and licensed content to help teams scale their content marketing that is hand curated for them by a team of editors. Third, we offer strategy services for brands who know content marketing is the future of their company but don't really know how to get started.

What's your role there? What does a normal day look like for you?

My role is managing editor, so I oversee all of our content production and publishing for our blog and academy (high value content) as well as our editorial calendar, budget and analytics. This includes coordinating with our social distribution person, working with our events team to make sure everything we do has proper coverage, working with our designers to create stunning visuals for our content, working with our PR teams to make sure our brand voice is cohesive throughout our efforts, working with the product team on how we share updates about our software, and taking pitches from our amazing freelancers. I also you know, write and edit and all that good stuff. 

Tell us a little about your professional background — how did you get where you are?

I have a degree in journalism and political science. I started working at a newspaper when I was still in high school and I started the first online student newspaper at my college. After that I worked at Gawker, Talking Points Memo, and as a freelance writer, then I shifted gears and worked in media consulting for brands like NBC, BBC, and Showtime. Then I went to the Paley Center for Media as a digital producer where I met NewsCred's CEO Shafqat Islam. The rest is history! 

What are you going to talk about at Full Stack Marketing?

I'm going to talk about how to grow your audience and retain customers with content marketing and some creative strategies we've employed at NewsCred to do this.

Many brands focus on new customers, which is important, but retaining customers and turning them into brand ambassadors is far more crucial and cost-effective.

For companies that are getting serious about marketing for the first time, where do you think they can get some quick wins?

Getting your employees to create content! It can feel like pulling teeth sometimes but if you can identify the people who do it really well, it saves you a ton of money and no one can talk about your brand better than its employees! Also, I find people on our sales team can write about selling to marketers more effectively than I as a marketer can because they speak from experience, so you have a chance to reach more people.

What common mistake do you see marketers making that drives you nuts?

Only talking about themselves! Or viciously going after their competitors in their content. Your audience doesn't care about that stuff — you need to provide them with real value in their careers or day-to-day lives. Marketers need to look past their own noses.

And lastly, a quick-fire round, just to help our readers get to know you a little better... 

  • Tea or coffee? Tea!

  • Wine or beer? Wine!

  • Twitter or Facebook? Twitter — always (follow me: @moxieingreen!)

  • iPhone or Android? iPhone

  • Favourite city? Toss up between Barcelona or Budapest.

  • Last book you read? Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay — I recommend it!

  • Last gig you went to? Scotland's very own Belle & Sebastian at Radio City Music Hall. It was epic.

  • What's the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow? African or European?