CMWorld 2018: Connect with Berrak

It’s my favorite time of year–in just a few days, I’ll be getting on a plane to Cleveland for Content Marketing World. This will be my fourth year attending and honestly, it’ll be my busiest year yet. I’m proud to be speaking (and leading my own session!) this year, as well as co-hosting the Creator Breakfast with Jay Acunzo. Since last year, I’ve also joined an agency as a full-time employee, and I will be representing them as well as my own company at the conference this year.

My focus has shifted a lot as my experience has evolved over the past few years. Every year, I try to get out of my comfort zone with the sessions I attend instead of going to ones on topics that I’m familiar with. I would also love to spend more time networking as my schedule allows, so if you’re going to be at any of the following sessions or the events, let’s be sure to connect!

Of course, if you’re going to be staying through Friday, I would love to see your faces in my session Friday morning! 

Here’s my tentative schedule and the sessions I’m looking forward to the most at this year’s Content Marketing World. The best way to reach me is on Twitter or in the CMWorld Community Slack (which you should join if you haven’t already). 

Tuesday, September 4

I arrive in Cleveland around 9:30 am on Tuesday morning. After getting settled at the hotel and grabbing lunch with a friend, I’ll be around all day for coffee meetings until about 4:30 PM. So if you’re in Cleveland and want to meet up, let me know! Of course, I will also be at the Kickoff Party at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. 

Wednesday, September 5

  • 10:15 AM: Content Strategy & SEO for B2B Lead Generation
  • 11:20 AM: Building a “Media Company” inside a Marketing Department
  • 2 PM: LinkedIn Content Marketing Strategies
  • 2:50 PM: 5 Creative Ways Marketers Can Enable Their Sales Teams
  • 8:30—> House of Blues and evening shenanigans

Thursday, September 6

Start your day with me, Jay Acunzo, and fellow creators at the CMWorld Creators Breakfast! Details here. 

  • 10:15 AM – Content Promotion Framework with Actionable Tips
  • 11:05 AM – The Agency Edge 2018
  • 12:05 PM – Influencer Marketing is Only for B2C Brands
  • 2:35 PM – How to Avoid Vanilla: Using Data & Storytelling
  • 6 PM —-> Orange Night Out!

Friday, September 7

THIS IS MY BIG DAY! I’ll be leading my first solo session on Lean Content Marketing for Startups at 9 AM before hitting the road to Detroit. I will be bringing the cat GIFs and there are rumors of some strawberry jam floating around.

Are you going to Content Marketing World? What sessions are you looking forward to the most this year? Be sure to:

Lessons from My Debut as a Public Speaker

Be careful what you wish for because it just might happen.

This is something I’ve been repeating to myself ever since I started on this journey. Setting your intentions and letting the universe know about those intentions lead to results.

Before we go any further, you should know that I have intense stage fright. I’m an introverted writer, and the second you put me in front of people, I get tongue-tied. Or worse, I get overly chatty, and not always in a delightful way. (I even snort).

At the end of 2016, I told a few close friends that I wanted to add “Speaker” to my list of titles. I submitted proposals to a couple of conferences. I received a few lovely rejections, which I fully expected. Thanks to the incredible group of people who have been my support system this past year, I got my first speaking opportunity at this year’s Content Marketing World as part of a panel for a session on Leveraging Content to Elevate Community.

I was going to be a speaker at my favorite conference!


Introvert’s Guide to Surviving Content Marketing World

(I wrote this post right before heading to Content Marketing World in 2017. Lucky for us, the community and the conference are consistent in their amazingness , making these tips evergreen.)

It’s that time of year again – the orange takes over, excitement fills the air, and we all descend on to Cleveland to attend Content Marketing World.

It’s no secret that Content Marketing World has a special place in my heart, along with the entire CMI team, and the incredible people I’ve met over the past three years.

But it can also be overwhelming. I’m an ambivert and conferences where I am “on” all the time for 4 days straight can take a lot out of me. My energy gets zapped once the adrenaline wears off, especially if I’m not practicing self-care throughout the conference. Over the past few years, I’ve gotten a lot better at preserving my energy in order to survive the week as an introvert.

I want to share a few of those tricks with you. I also reached out to the #CMWorld Slack Community to get their input.

So, here are a few ways you can survive Content Marketing World as an introvert. (more…)

Slow Down to Reach Content Marketing Success (and some other CMWorld takeaways)


Disclaimer: There will be more than one post related to CMWorld

Truth be told, I’m still going through my notes from Content Marketing World. The notes I took in addition to all of the tweets I sent out during the week. I may have gone a little overboard on Twitter, but there were so many great insights! As a writer and strategist, I’m naturally planning out content themes around the sessions I attended so look out for those in the upcoming weeks. (Oh and subscribe to my email newsletter!)

For this post, I wanted to focus on the major takeaways from the conference, the ones that haven’t stopped bouncing around my brain. (more…)

7 Reasons CMWorld Is Like Coming Home


There are no shortages of conferences throughout the year. There are small ones. There are huge ones. There are super specialized ones.

Hell, I even cofounded a specialized conference with three amazing people.

Not every conference is created equal.

Good news: The industries and internet are big enough for all of us. Local conferences are great for those with small budgets who don’t have the luxury of traveling on a company/client account.

Bad news: More often than not, quantity sacrifices quality.

As a freelancer-turned-solopreneur, I haven’t had the luxury of having a large conference budget. I’ve been lucky enough to have clients who saw the value proposition in covering my expenses, and other times, I’ve volunteered in exchange for attendance.

For me, the CMWorld conference was like coming home. I was surrounded by like-minded individuals who were passionate about content marketing, making a difference, and genuinely helping their clients/customers. I fell in love with the color orange. I walked away inspired and exhilarated.

After volunteering at this conference last year, even though I had introvert fatigue, I was also exhilarated. I felt connected to every single person there because we all shared the same passion, in varying degrees. Different industries, different backgrounds, but all with a common passion: content and content marketing.

Here are the 7 ways attending CMWorld felt like coming home.