Our in-house digital marketing team recently took a field trip to McCormick Place in Chicago, IL for the DigiMarCon 2019 conference. This two-day event was split into themed lectures on day one, and master classes on day two. We asked our four-person squad to share some of their favorite moments from the two-day event.
The best part of waking up is validation in your cup.
The very first session of the first day (“Digital Marketing Trends: Experts Insights On How to Gain a Competitive Edge”) may as well have been a high-level summary of our #digitalmarketing Slack thread here at the office. That’s not a slam on the presentation-- everything they shared was extremely relevant to the present and near-future of digital marketing. No, this was sweet, sweet validation of our team’s constant belief in staying on top of the digital marketing world. We not only knew much of what was shared, but actually have many of these “trends” in practice for some current clients.
(It felt extra good when they started talking about AR/VR. We are soooo ahead of the industry on that one.)
Video is still king. All hail video.
Making a great video is one thing. Putting your video to work for your sales and marketing efforts is another. Ruben Dua’s presentation “Leveraging Video for Business Growth” provided some extremely valuable insights and best practices for us to take home with us — everything from current recommended formats and run times by social platform, to some tips and tricks for circumventing those pesky algorithms.
Ain’t Nothin’ But a 5G Thing
The basic takeaway from this pleasant surprise of a session was that marketers should begin adjusting their digital content creation for the Wonder Woman-esque might of 5G internet, and that 5G will make mobile carriers the all-powerful center of user access.
(Though we think 5G maniacs might need to slow their roll a bit, as the infrastructure is still a ways off from being fully in place.)
Do You Even Lift, Bro?
Teresa Lewis, Sr. Consultant, Advanced Measurement Services at Adobe, took some time to talk about lift testing. This practice uses statistical concepts to prove that users who see your ads do indeed take desired actions (whether that’s purchases, downloads, or another conversion action) more often than users who don’t. It helps answer the question, “Would my audience be doing these things anyway, whether they see an ad or not?”
The results arm advertisers with the knowledge of how effective their ads are, and those are some powerful insights.
It wouldn’t be a digital marketing conference without someone talking about Influencers
In the right hands, and with the right strategy, influencer marketing can be a very powerful tactic in your overall marketing strategy. This presentation provided some extremely sound best practices companies should consider when pursuing an influencer or influencer marketing program, including contract line items, evaluation guidelines, and making sure that channel, influencer, and influencer’s audience all make sense together.
All your data are belong to us
As with anything data-related, this session was equal parts creepy and exciting—creepy in how easy it is to learn SO MUCH about complete strangers, and exciting because, well, in order for us to do our jobs well, we need to learn SO MUCH about complete strangers.
The moderator, Tim Hayden from Braintrust Partners, also dropped two fascinating little nuggets on us during this session:
- Between 2017-2018, there was a 78% increase in the number of people who own smart speakers (or as we like to say, “a 78% increase in the number of homes probably being listened to without their permission”)
- Two companies pretty much own all smart doorbells. JUST TWO.
Ultimately, the focus was not on the controversial aspects of data collection, but rather how to maximize legally available data through a Customer Data Platform. It was extremely insightful, and left us wanting to explore how to utilize this in our own work going forward.
On an unrelated note, we saw some big celebrities
Though the city was slowly being overtaken with people heading into Chicago for a Rolling Stones concert, it wasn’t Mick, Keith, and the rest of the gang we spotted at our hotel. It was the WNBA’s own Indiana Fever. We’ve never felt shorter.
(p.s. Hey, Indiana Fever, we should work together. Drop us a line.)
Some short takeaways from Friday’s master classes:
- “If you lost the logo, who would know your brand?” Brand is about way more than your looks. It’s what you do, who you are, how you talk, the real life experience, etc. We couldn’t agree more.
- Some beautiful genius asked (incredulously), “Why are we building emails on desktop when most people are reading them on mobile?” We put that one into practice immediately. Get excited, clients.
- Chat bots aren’t creepy. They’re actually really good, and people don’t mind using them when they’re actually helpful. But don’t waste your chat bot. Make sure you’re pulling data out of yours and using it to improve your business, User Xperience, or Customer Xperience.
- Shelly Grierson, Director of Marketing at Space Between revealed that once a month, their company has a day where employees can focus on a non-project thing in order to upskill—to get better, smarter.
- Meghan Hultquist’s (HQ Digital) master class on Inbound Marketing was a treasure trove of tips and tricks. If you’re one of our many current clients on a monthly retainer, odds are we’ve already put 90% of her advice to work for you.
Spoiler alert: We can’t wait ‘til next year.
Between the notebook’s worth of knowledge we each walked away with, and the invaluable experience that is uninterrupted learning time, we couldn’t have spent a better Thursday and Friday away from the office. Thanks for putting together a great event. We’re definitely putting next year’s event on our calendar.
Put some of these amazing insights to work for you. Send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org to get in touch with our award-winning digital marketing team.