Meet Katie Leask, winner of the 2022 Rising Star in Content Award

Katie, tell us who you are, what you do, and who you work for? 

I’m Katie, a content marketer with over seven years of experience in content strategy, development, and copywriting. My current role is Global Head of Content at Contentsquare, a digital experience analytics platform that helps brands build better customer experiences online.

Previously, I was Senior Content Manager at a global agency called Jellyfish (where I led content strategy for brands such as Clarins, Toyota, and Ugg). I left to join Contentsquare in March last year and, since then, have had the craziest career journey—moving from Content Manager for Northern Europe into a global role tasked with leading and defining our global content strategy. I’ve learned so much from so many people over the past 15 months, it’s been truly transformative.

What does this award win mean to you? 

Despite the fact I was unable to attend the awards this year and found out I’d won while sitting in bed with a cup of tea and my pajamas on(!)—this award win means a lot to me. More than anything, it’s a reminder that hard work pays off. I’m so grateful to have won, thank you so very much.

Why do you think awards are so important?

I think the concept of awards goes way beyond simply increasing brand (or personal) awareness. They’re a chance for leaders in the space to demonstrate the many clever and intuitive ways they’re positively impacting the world. 

For Contentsquare (who were shortlisted for the 2022 Retail Content Campaign of the Year against the likes of Specsavers, Adidas, and Buy A Gift), it allowed us to share a story of how we used customer voices to tell a compelling story. What’s more, highlighting the strategy behind our Retailers on Retail campaign can help provide a blueprint for other brands to build upon in their industry, too. I know I’ve already looked to this year’s shortlist for inspiration—so awards are a great way to showcase new ideas and strategies.

But I think most importantly, they’re an opportunity to reflect and be mindful. It’s so easy to keep plowing endlessly forward, but crafting an award entry forces you to reflect on what you’ve achieved in the last year and all the moving parts that helped you get there.

And what has been your biggest achievement in the last year?

Ah, I’d say delivering Contentsquare’s annual hero report The 2022 Digital Experience Benchmark which was a 78-page, data-driven analysis of digital performance across 14 industries and 46+ billion user sessions. The “achievement” part was completing the first draft in less than two weeks (I’m still not sure how—lots of coffee and late nights, I think!). 

Source: Contentsquare

The hardest part was turning over 100 digital data points and graphs into a compelling story about the state of online experience. It was just a hugely intense two weeks with a lot of responsibility (and KPIs!) attached to it, but I learned a lot and the results since the launch have been incredible. 

What has been your biggest learning?

That teamwork makes the dream work. Cheesy as hell, I know, but I’ve never appreciated the power of working together more than I do since joining Contentsquare. They say it takes a village to raise a child, and it definitely takes an entire team of dedicated, inspirational, and talented people to execute a global campaign (especially one that gets shortlisted for an award).

And finally, what do you hope for in the next 12 months?

Another week-long holiday somewhere hot? And that’s actually a genuine answer. I find that when you work hard five days a week, holidays aren’t just a nice-to-have anymore—they’re actually necessary. The only way to ensure you don’t burn out is to take a break, reboot, and come back refreshed. When I’m on holiday I don’t check my email or Slack at all to ensure I fully relax. I find this is the only way to come back with a bang, ready to throw myself into the next project. So that’s my biggest hope for the upcoming year! 

But as well as another week by a pool, I’d love for Contentsquare to win an award for an integrated campaign. We have some incredible ideas for next year (including a fresh new take on our annual benchmark report), and I’d love the entire marketing team—from demand gen to events to design to content to PR and everything in between—to get recognition for all the heart, soul, and planning we put into making these campaigns happen. So we’ll definitely be entering the awards again next year!

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