What I Learned From This Year’s Digital Summit

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I got to attend the 2018 Digital Summit conference right here in Atlanta for the first time and it was a pretty cool experience (shout out to my job for sending me).

I can’t lie to you and say that I wasn’t overwhelmed, there was a lot of people and information to digest and with the various list presentations, I was constantly wondering if I chose the “right” one. Don’t get me wrong, all the speakers were great and have a ton of experience, so I don’t doubt their knowledge. However, I constantly found myself conflicted on which presentation to watch. The conference is split into time slots and there can be up to four or five presentations available and you have to choose one (no pressure, lol).

I had a few topics that I wanted to focus on: email marketing, SEO, and social media, so that made narrowing the presentation a bit easier. I know this isn’t technically about beauty or inspiration like my normal content, but I think this would be helpful to most of you reading this. A lot of my viewers are entrepreneurs and run some type of business/brand and I felt compelled to share the advice and trends from each speaker with you. Keep reading to see what I learned from this year’s Digital Summit.

Email Marketing

People are more likely to read emails now more than ever before. Throughout the conference, many spoke of the importance of sending out emails and how to make things easier for your audience.

  • Make sure your emails read well on a mobile device. Large amounts of emails are read from phones, which was no surprise, we use our phones for everything!
  • Experiment with different email times and days, the only day that’s least effective is Saturdays. FYI, most people ready emails when they’re in bed or watching tv.
  • Include more engagement activities in your emails like polls, videos, etc.
  • Always add your voice and a humanistic approach, those robotic messages are not effective.
  • Make sure your emails are one column, people only want to zoom in on pictures
  • Everyone on your mailing list won’t care about your email, use a segmented list and separate based off of gender, age, location, etc.
  • A few gifs won’t hurt. Gifs were a trend, a lot of people at the conference either used them or talked about them.
  • Always use a call to action, but don’t make them too generic like “Click Here.”
  • Include buttons instead of links, it clearly shows what action you want readers to take. By the way, the average size for buttons is 44×44.

Social Listening

Another trend at the conference was where to get your content. A lot of the marketing professionals are nixing the idea of content being king and moving towards data and concept. Many encourage to listen to the data, which ultimately tell you what your audience wants. So this means, check your analytics, it helps you figure out what works and what doesn’t, or even what you can do better. Here’s what industry leaders had to say about social listening:

  • The new formula for creating content should be: collecting data —> creating strategy —> planning —> monitoring!
  • Revisit and revise social strategy every six months or sooner. See what is working for your brand and what’s not.
  • Use each social media platform for a different purpose. Figure out what’s important to your audience updates, lifestyle, product education, etc. 
  • Questions to ask yourself when creating content:
      • What do you want to talk about?
      • What do you want to know?
      • What does your audience want to know?
      • What does your audience want?
      • What channels are they on?
      • What content is doing well?
      • What days get the most engagement?
  • Explore different content on different platforms. I was told that everyone on Facebook isn’t going to be like your audience on Twitter, so you can’t treat them the same way. Many recommended keeping this as a reminder: Facebook = conversions, Instagram = inspiration, and Twitter = awareness.

Omni-Channel Marketing

Speaking of using different channels for different messages, there was a lot of talk on using various social media platforms to connect with different people. The thing that makes all of these networks great is that it’s not the same. Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram all offer tools that the other cannot. Here are a few things to keep in mind when marketing on multiple social networks:

  • Multi-channels offers different channels,  different journey’s, and one brand experience.
  • Consumers already embrace engaging with your brand across channels, just provide great and refreshing content.
  • The goal: creating seamless, personalized, and consistent content. (Consistency isn’t just about the amount of time you most, but also what you actually post)
  • Connect the way the customer initiates the connection. In other words, let there likes and inquiries dictate the content on that particular platform. 
  • Brand voice is relatable
    Brand image is recognizable

SEO

Lastly, I want to mention a few tips I received about search engine optimization. I personally can get a little better at this:

  • Use the periodic table of SEO success factors as a guide, you can find it here.
  • Google ranks higher based off of user-experience, interactions, emotions, and attitudes.
  • Make sure you make your content and business easy to find and think in the mind of your audience. People talk to search engines how they speak to people.
  • Be consistent and clear.
  • Include links and testimonials if applicable, it will help you rand higher.
  • Use keywords that your audience is likely to use.
  • Long load times and industry jargon will affect your ranking.

Now I’m not saying this is a one shoe fits all rule, but a few of these tips did inspire me to not only implement new strategies for my clients but for my brand as well. I thought it would be worth sharing a few with you in case you were considering changing or starting a new marketing strategy.

Let me know in the comments what you struggle with the most when it comes to content marketing. Also, let me know if you’ve ever attended the Digital Summit before, I’m interested in hearing what you think: helpful or no? Let me know in the comments below!

 

If you like post like this, check out my recap of Influence 101: Connecting Bloggers to Brands.