Ben Cronin, Pinnacle: "Now more than ever, marketing strategies have to be well-rounded and data-driven"

With the inaugural Digital Marketing Forum less than a week away, we catch up with speaker Ben Cronin, Head of Content Marketing at Pinnacle, who explains how content can build brands and engage audiences.
Affiliate Industry Review: Hi Ben, can you begin by telling us a bit about your igaming expertise and your career history.
Ben Cronin: I’ve been with Pinnacle for three years now and over that time I have been implementing my skills and the experience I gained on the agency side of digital marketing.
I was serious about betting before I joined Pinnacle so I certainly class betting knowledge as one of my areas of expertise. That domain-specific knowledge is key to understanding our target audience and how our product should be marketed.
On the technical side, the early part of my career was heavily focused on SEO and that’s something that I’ve continued to develop and helped Pinnacle with over the past few years.
AI: Content marketing is complex at the best of times, a strategy and resource is required to do it right. Can you share what kinds of content are effective for Affiliates to consider?
BC: This is definitely dependent on the brand, what they are trying to achieve, and the audience they are trying to reach. Blog style article content is obviously great for SEO and ultimately acquisition, but if you’re more interested in instant engagement with your audience and helping them start a journey with your product then video may be a better route to go.
It’s also worth considering the power of audio. There are plenty of podcasts out there and if you get it right it can be great for brand awareness. Obviously, if you have the resources at your disposal then a mix of all three of those is great. If not, you’re better off focusing on getting one right and scaling up from there.
AI: Where is content marketing as a specialist marketing skill headed in 2019 and beyond, especially with the complexity of multiple events that take place in sports betting?
BC: I think now more than ever, marketing strategies (and marketers themselves) have to be well-rounded and data driven. People tend to dedicate a lot of time to the creative work behind a piece of content but you need to put as much effort in to analysing its has as you do creating it.
Data really is the key to everything we do at Pinnacle and I’d expect the same can be said for the large majority of others in the industry. Even if you’re a one man team, there’s no reason why you can’t use simple metrics like Page Views, Sessions, Bounce Rate and Time on Page in Google Analytics to help inform your decision making process when it comes to content marketing.
AI: Your panel discusses how content can build brands and engage audiences. Can you share a few highlights that delegates will be able to learn from your session?
BC: I think it’s a very well-balanced panel and there should be something there for everyone. Whether people want to get insight from an operator’s perspective, a publisher’s or learn more about the agency side of the industry, we’ve got all the bases covered.
Speaking for myself, I think anyone interested in learning why you should develop a content marketing strategy and where to begin will benefit from my experience and what I can share in terms of how things work at Pinnacle.
AI: The advancement of influencers and artificial intelligence (AI) must be having a big effect on content marketing. How do you see this changing the strategy that sits behind content marketing in a digital sense?
BC: I think people feel like you need influencers to help you cut through the noise to reach your audience and be successful with content marketing and that’s probably why we are seeing it used so much at the moment. However, as I said before, you have to be concerned with your own brand.
Using an influencer might be right for a competitor but that doesn’t make it right for you. Your content needs to be consistent and authentic and if forcing an influencer into that mix distorts those key components then it’s best avoided.
As for AI, the impact it has had in recent years is incredible, but trying to grasp just how much it can develop and how big that impact can be in the future is actually quite frightening. We’ve already seen massive changes with automation, targeting and retargeting, personalisation and even new forms of customer service, but there’s plenty more to come. It certainly feels like we’re at the start of something big.
To hear more from Ben and numerous other thought leaders, sign up for the Digital Marketing Forum HERE.

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