Explore hit Minneapolis this week for two days. In thirty-six hours, 250 people listened to the two-day event and heard ideas, tips, trends, best practices and rants covering today’s world of marketing.
As Explore founder Jason Falls welcomed the crowd representing professionals leading digital marketing efforts for SMBs and big corporate brands he challenged the speakers to go big with ideas. He warned the audience members that the two-day exploration would be “fast and furious” with some sessions lasting only 20 minutes. And then, the first keynote, Jay Baer took the stage.
Pump up the music. Turn it up.
Jay’s flawless performance reached the fundamental heart of purposeful marketing to build true value through the social channels. Kipp Bodnar gave us the keys to unlocking lead generation. Nichole Kelly debunked the value of soft leads saying that the bottom line is really about ROI as measured in dollars, not in engagement found in clicks, likes and RTs.
The Tim Hayden shared about the trend of mobile and its impact that is bigger than any other technology. DJ Waldow wanted audience members to revalue the importance of email marketing. A passionate discussion came from the Ad Contranian himself, Bob Hoffman who urged the room full of “social media maniacs” to not go overboard assuming that social media and is the silver bullet at all.
Play that funky music. Spin that wheel.
There were stories about branding, economics, leadership, organization, management, collaboration, integration, content marketing and lead generation. Some argued that surveys and metrics mattered the most. Others freely gave the secrets to gain inbound links. Two floors in two days of multiple sessions from leading experts in digital marketing shared the best practices. It was enough to make your head spin come Monday morning, ready to implement all the tips and tools that were given.
Thankfully, Jason offered the best tip of the entire event in his closing remarks. He shared a story about sitting in a coffee shop several days ago as he observed a couple of love bird teenagers. As the girl gazed into her boyfriend’s eyes, lip syncing a love song playing on the radio, Jason came upon a revelation which was this: Singing someone else’s song doesn’t make sense for today’s marketers.
Video killed the radio star. Be your own star.
Though many may find their own success story from Facebook strategies or TV ads or email marketing, it may not fit your own market and message. Jason encouraged the audience, “Understand your audience and what they want.” Write and sing your own love song to woo them. Your approach to digital marketing must be unique to your audience.
This ain’t no marketing karaoke. Be original.
Though there were a lot of play lists and mixes of marketing and media played throughout the two day Explore event, you need to find your own voice, your own message and your own media channel to attract and persuade your own customers. Hopefully this event opened your mind, inspired you, gave you some encouragement and lessons to get on the right track, your own track to success.