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The (Retail) Content-Powered Organization 
Patrick Cassidy, New Balance & Ian Fitzpatrick, Almighty 
@patrickecassidy and ...
Hello, I’m Patrick Cassidy. 
Global Digital Strategy, New Balance 
@patrickecassidy
Hello, I’m Ian Fitzpatrick. 
Chief Strategy Officer, Almighty 
@ianfitzpatrick
Together, we’ve evolved from operating in one 
(wholesale) channel to many.
Six lessons we’ve learned (together and from one another) 
about making the content we develop more effective:
we are learning 
Six lessons we’ve learned (together and from one another) 
about making the content we develop more effec...
LESSON ONE: 
Build a culture that obsesses 
over the basics.
We have to be careful about talking to ourselves. 
’Plush leather upper’ said no one, ever.
Don’t be above anything. As long as it fuels client 
business results, be open to it.
LESSON TWO: 
Treat outside communities as 
inside communities
We have to think about engagement on a business 
goal level. What kinds of interactions can we connect to 
conversion, and...
Great content lives in the margins. Sometimes, our 
best role is in helping to identify the interesting (and 
interested) ...
LESSON THREE: 
Find your organization’s 
beginner’s mind.
Iterate doesn’t mean anything if we’re not prepared 
to test. We can improve conversion if we are willing to do 
the legwo...
Don’t be a means agency. When you can be objective 
about an approach, you’ll build better partnerships.
LESSON FOUR: 
Be very valuable to a few rather 
than loosely relevant to many.
We have to fight the urge to find scale in everything. 
Determining how we’re going to measure the success of 
content upf...
From scale limitations, content value. The cost 
constraints of niche markets allow agencies to flex their 
strategic and ...
#Lil’Rambis
LESSON FIVE: 
Tap what already exists in the 
culture around you.
Resist the temptation to lead the way when there’s 
an emerging crowd to join. This isn’t a call to do more 
crowdsourcing...
Don’t be precious about where ideas come from — be 
diligent in shaping the where they end up. Embrace 
the truth that ide...
LESSON SIX: 
Build a proof of concept 
culture.
Fight the urge to build consensus. 
Grabbing a camera and chasing an opportunity is often the 
best way to sell an idea th...
Put skin in the game. 
Build a relationship that doesn’t constantly hinge on 
signed SOWs, so you can be part of the spont...
SEEK RELATIONSHIPS THAT: 
Are wide, not just deep 
Lend themselves to improvisation 
Share institutional knowledge 
Are ac...
Thank you. Questions? 
@PATRICKECASSIDY 
@IANFITZPATRICK
FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization
FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization
FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization
FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization
FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization
FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization
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FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization

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FutureM 2014

The Content-Powered Organization

Speakers:
Ian Fitzpatrick (@ianfitzpatrick) Chief Strategy Officer, Almighty
Patrick Cassidy (@patrickecassidy) Head of Global Digital Brand Marketing, New Balance

Global footwear and apparel retailer New Balance worked to rethink not only the ways in which content is created and distributed, but also the ways in which it can connect parts of the organization. From working with product development teams to tell better stories about their shoes, to collaborations with event activation teams to bring the brand to life, to content-powered partnerships with Zappos and Amazon that link marketing with channel sales, New Balance is working to embed cross-departmental content creation into its DNA.

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FutureM 2014 - The Content-Powered Organization

  1. 1. The (Retail) Content-Powered Organization Patrick Cassidy, New Balance & Ian Fitzpatrick, Almighty @patrickecassidy and @ianfitzpatrick #FUTUREM
  2. 2. Hello, I’m Patrick Cassidy. Global Digital Strategy, New Balance @patrickecassidy
  3. 3. Hello, I’m Ian Fitzpatrick. Chief Strategy Officer, Almighty @ianfitzpatrick
  4. 4. Together, we’ve evolved from operating in one (wholesale) channel to many.
  5. 5. Six lessons we’ve learned (together and from one another) about making the content we develop more effective:
  6. 6. we are learning Six lessons we’ve learned (together and from one another) about making the content we develop more effective:
  7. 7. LESSON ONE: Build a culture that obsesses over the basics.
  8. 8. We have to be careful about talking to ourselves. ’Plush leather upper’ said no one, ever.
  9. 9. Don’t be above anything. As long as it fuels client business results, be open to it.
  10. 10. LESSON TWO: Treat outside communities as inside communities
  11. 11. We have to think about engagement on a business goal level. What kinds of interactions can we connect to conversion, and what sorts of ongoing interactions will that require of us?
  12. 12. Great content lives in the margins. Sometimes, our best role is in helping to identify the interesting (and interested) inside the organization.
  13. 13. LESSON THREE: Find your organization’s beginner’s mind.
  14. 14. Iterate doesn’t mean anything if we’re not prepared to test. We can improve conversion if we are willing to do the legwork to find out why people aren’t buying a product (and then develop content to address it).
  15. 15. Don’t be a means agency. When you can be objective about an approach, you’ll build better partnerships.
  16. 16. LESSON FOUR: Be very valuable to a few rather than loosely relevant to many.
  17. 17. We have to fight the urge to find scale in everything. Determining how we’re going to measure the success of content upfront is key to having small victories.
  18. 18. From scale limitations, content value. The cost constraints of niche markets allow agencies to flex their strategic and media thinking in exciting ways.
  19. 19. #Lil’Rambis
  20. 20. LESSON FIVE: Tap what already exists in the culture around you.
  21. 21. Resist the temptation to lead the way when there’s an emerging crowd to join. This isn’t a call to do more crowdsourcing, but rather a call to stay plugged into the cultures in which your brand is immersed.
  22. 22. Don’t be precious about where ideas come from — be diligent in shaping the where they end up. Embrace the truth that ideas are fungible and value comes from connecting them to business value.
  23. 23. LESSON SIX: Build a proof of concept culture.
  24. 24. Fight the urge to build consensus. Grabbing a camera and chasing an opportunity is often the best way to sell an idea that would die in committee.
  25. 25. Put skin in the game. Build a relationship that doesn’t constantly hinge on signed SOWs, so you can be part of the spontaneity.
  26. 26. SEEK RELATIONSHIPS THAT: Are wide, not just deep Lend themselves to improvisation Share institutional knowledge Are accountable for measurement Obfuscate credit Embrace small wins
  27. 27. Thank you. Questions? @PATRICKECASSIDY @IANFITZPATRICK

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