Digital Marketing Interview Series with Jamil Karim, Marketing and Communications Manager at Innovate BC

1. What is the biggest content marketing challenge you see companies face?

Trying to determine who your audience is. Today, everything is so targeted and segmented. For us at Innovate BC, it’s conceivable that throughout the course of a day we’ll need to create content for clean tech entrepreneurs in Vancouver, startups in Vernon, and academic institutions in Victoria. 

You need to completely understand your audience or else you’ll never be able to deliver content they can use and act on. 

2. How do you determine which KPIs or metrics are most useful to your content marketing?

It really depends on the campaign. If we’re trying to create awareness, then we’re fishing with a net and hoping we can get as many opens and impressions as possible. If we’re looking for engagement, then we start looking at how many engagements we’re getting, who’s engaging, and why they’re engaging. 

Data and results from one campaign can directly affect the approach and strategy of your next campaign, which means the KPIs and metrics aren’t a one size fits all across all content campaigns.  

3. How do you find inspiration for your creative content?

Personally, I read a ton of content each day. I subscribe to nearly a dozen newsletters, I track everything from sports/news/tech/politics/markets, and usually by the end of the day I’ve been sent at least 10 different social media links with unique content. 

The more I consume, the more I can pull from when it’s time to put together creative content. If I see something in The Hustle, or Betakit, or The Logic that I think could work for our organization, I’ll usually share it with our team right away. 

4. How do you see AI or machine learning will influence content marketing in the next five years?

I think we’ll be able to pull data and information much more effectively. Data drives everything in every successful organization, so leveraging AI and machine learning to help you analyze data and implement better content strategies will change the way marketing departments in every organization operate. 

5. How do you see AR or VR will influence content marketing in the next five years?

I think we’re already seeing how VR/AR is changing the way we live, work, and play. Especially here in B.C., our VR/AR industry is one of the best in the world and we’re seeing it revolutionize traditional industries like mining, forestry, and agriculture just to name a few. 

When it comes to content marketing, a key factor is cost. VR/AR, as of right now, can bring with it higher costs. Will organizations be willing to commit their dollars to invest in a VR/AR content marketing strategy? If you’re a large organization like Microsoft, Amazon, or even a local company like Article, I think there’s a lot of value. If you’re a startup that’s still looking to commercialize or trying to scale, I don’t know if VR/AR is the most effective option.  

6. What are some areas in content marketing you think companies should improve on?

Less is more. Do a few things exceptionally instead of several things mediocre and your content will be more effective.


Jamil Karim is the Marketing and Communications Manager at Innovate BC. He was previously the Project Manager and Senior Copywriter at Organo. He has also worked as a writer for local media companies.

Jamil Karim holds a diploma in public relations at Kwantlen University College and has received Presidents Honour Roll for Outstanding Academic Achievement. He also holds a bachelor in professional communications at Royal Roads University.

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