Welcome #TAIC Rocket Surgeons!

NOTE: You will be able to see session notes during each workshop.


There is A LOT of information below. It’s broken down so you can follow along with each presentation, and then get access to additional resources below.

BONUS Resources: How To Build a Content Studio | Book Recommendations

TAIC Exclusive: Private Consultations


Session 01: It’s Not Rocket Surgery

JTBD Framework

Understanding your customer is essential to good marketing. Travel Alberta already provided you with two great profiles: Free Spirit and Cultural Explorer. That solves WHO they are. Using the JTBD methodology will show you WHY they buy.

For this workshop, we will focus on the core basics of the JTBD interview process. Here is the basic information we want to gather when interviewing a customer:

  • Their role in the decision-making process.
  • The context for the decision.
  • What was important during research.
  • What would make them hesitate before buying.

Content Strategy Framework

Most customers follow a similar path when making decisions. Your role as a marketer is to create and align content to each stage of that decision-making process.

The Customer Decision Journey (developed by McKinsey) has four key areas that should guide all your content marketing efforts.

  • Interest Trigger – how will you make a potential customer think they need/want your product or service?
  • Initial Consideration Set – what will make them think of your organization first as a solution?
  • Active Evaluation – what will make them choose you during their research?
  • Post-Purchase Experience – what will make them believe they made the right decision?

Rapid Fire 10

  • Organize an Instameet (consider partnering with DMOs or tour operators in the area).
  • Document a Trip on Instagram Stories (and save it as video).
  • Shoot a panorama shot on your phone, and share it using the Facebook app.
  • Ask a great customer to leave a review.
  • Run a Brand Awareness ad on Facebook.
  • Create a Christmas Gift Guide.
  • Find and delight one customer with a personalized gift.
  • Tell us about you, your staff, and your WHY on Instagram Stories or Snap.
  • Farm #ExploreAlberta on Twitter and Instagram for content ideas.
  • Create a “Talk Trigger”… essentially a selfie station :)


Resource Links:


Session 02: Stack, Structure & Flow

Content Stacking

This is a methodology of creating a trail of breadcrumbs for your customers to follow. Every new interaction should deliver more value or entertainment. Things to think about:

  • Involve multiple senses (photo, video, audio, tactile, smell?).
  • Create seamless movement across platforms and media types.
  • Focus on valuable information or entertainment.

Structured Content

Properly structured content can increase your organic traffic from 20% to 150% and more. While most of it depends on using schema.org and HTML5 tags and syntax, you can get started with a couple of simple practices:

  • Create your content in “chunks”.
  • Create one or two post formats you can repeat.
  • Use plugins like Yoast and WP SEO

Content Workflow

Streamlining your content production can save time, increase the quality and quantity of your content, and bring more inbound traffic. Here is a simple 7-step formula you can start with:

  1. Research
  2. Write & Edit
  3. Optimize
  4. Publish
  5. Crosslink
  6. Share
  7. Review

Content Audit

A good content audit can deliver some pretty incredible results. Some companies have seen an increase in organic traffic of 300%, which is INSANE. To get started with a very simple audit, follow these steps:

  • Export data from Google Analytics (unique pageviews and time spent on page)
  • Open in Excel, and trimp to top 20 – 25 articles.
  • Import those URLs into ShareCount and collect social shares.
  • Analyze

Look for:

  • Titles that perform really well
  • Subjects that bring the most traffic
  • Post structure and format
  • Correlation between shares and days posted
  • Any gaps in the decision making journey that are not covered

Once you have some insights, plan the following actions:

  • Update titles and META tags
  • Update links and crosslink to other articles
  • Delete poor performing articles and redirect or remove them
  • Combine similar posts into one updated post
  • Add multimedia
  • Add CTAs


Resource Links:



How To Build a Content Studio

Here is a list of specific gear recommendations, that will help you make professional looking videos, photos, webinars, and podcasts.

Each piece of equipment was chosen specifically to work with each other, be easy to use, and offer the best value to quality ratio.


Online Video Production

Canon 80D – This camera shoots in 1080p, more than enough for online video, and has incredible autofocus and face tracking so you never have to worry about if you’re in focus.

Canon 18-135 STM lens – This lens often comes in a higher priced kit with the camera. The STM lenses are quiet (so you won’t hear it focus while filming) and this one specifically offers a great value with a wide zoom range.

Rode VideoMic Pro – The downside of the Canon camera is that it has hissy microphone preamplifiers. This microphone solves that by providing a +20dB boost to your audio signal. And it runs on batteries, so you can take it on the road.

Amazon Basics Tripod – For online video, you don’t need a fancy tripod. This one by Amazon is a great value, comes with a bag, and is tall enough for almost any in-studio or in-field use.

3-piece Lighting Kit – Good lighting is THE secret to quality video, and it doesn’t have to be expensive. This entry level 3 piece kit will allow you to shoot videos, product photography, and interviews. It comes with a bag as well.

White Background – For a clean, professional look you can use a simple white background or shoot with a white wall about 4′ to 6′ behind you to eliminate shadows. This one is easy to hang or clip to a divider.


Live Streaming

Movo Pr-1 Smartphone Rig. When livestreaming you will likely be using your phone. This portable rig allows you to use it handheld, or mounted to a tripod (like the one above). In addition, it also has a mount available for your external microphone.

Coldshoe Adapter – to make the Videomic Pro fit on this rig, you will need to use a mount adapter. This can also come in handy if you want to bring your microphone in closer to yourself or your interviewee on a separate tripod.

TRRS Adapter – in order to use a better quality external microphone with your phone, you will also need an input adapter so your phone can recognize the input.


Audio, Webinar & Podcast Production

Audio Technica AT2005USB – This inexpensive microphone produces amazing sound quality. Most people can’t tell it apart from a $500 microphone. It offers both USB and XLR connection (in case you go on the road with your podcast).

Foam Windshield – eliminates most pops and thumps our voice naturally makes when speaking into a microphone. The AT mic responds really well to these pop filters, and additionally it makes your voice sound even smoother.

Boom Arm – Want to feel like a fancy radio host? Then add one of these boom arms to your kit. The shockmount should work with the microphone and you will be able to position the mic where you need it.

Zoom H6 recorder – If you plan to have multiple hosts, or if you plan to record in-field interviews, this recorder is a great value. It can take up to 6 inputs (just buy more microphones and XLR cables to connect them) and also works as a USB interface in case you decide to upgrade your microphones.



Assuming you are sticking with the Canon 80D suggestion from above, all you need to add are one or two fast lenses. These two offer great quality at affordable prices.

Canon 50mm 1.8 STM – for an inexpensive and fast lens, look no further than the “plastic fantastic”. You will need a bit more distance than the Sigma above, but you can easily get creamy bokeh (blurry background) and fast autofocus.

Sigma 30mm 1.4 – To create those sharp-as-a-tack photos, with beautiful blurry backgrounds there are few lenses better than the Sigma 30mm. It will also work for video production (in fact, this is my main Canon lens).


Book Recommendations:

In case you didn’t win one of the books we gave away at the conference… here are a few of the best recent books on marketing you should have on reading pile (or queued up in your audiobook app):

Building A Storybrand by Donald Miller – Actionable book that walks you through a storytelling framework  you can use to clarify your branding, marketing and even dig into the specific details of how to build a landing page.

Influence by Robert Cialdini – This is a classic that dives into the psychology of persuasion. You will discover 6 main principles of why people say “yes”. It’s an excellent book for taking your content marketing to the next level.

Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug – Originally published in 2000, this timeless classic STILL applies today. It’s a handbook for many usability designers and marketers. Highly recommended.

Get Scrappy by Nick Westergaard – You don’t need a giant budget or a 100 person marketing team to build your business. This book goes into details of digital marketing and how to apply it in small businesses.

When Coffee and Kale Compete by Alan Klement – Written by one of the main proponents of the Jobs-To-Be-Done methodology, this FREE book will offer some incredible insights behind why people buy.


Private Consultations

If you are interested in taking action on the ideas you heard at the conference this year, the Private Consults are open ONLY to TAIC attendees, and there are 10 spots available. Each private consult is 60 – 90 minutes, and the fees are $200.

We can do a content audit together, come up with content ideas, review your online presence and find the low hanging fruit, or you can choose to use it as an ask-me-anything-digital-marketing training session.

If interested, please send an e-mail to hello@ernestbarbaric.com with “TAIC Offer” in the subject line. We can only book the first 10 folks who reach out.

For something more involved like consulting, training or speaking, check out how to Work With Me.

Thank you!

– ernest.