Last week, my co-worker Nikki Tofalo and I had the opportunity to attend HubSpot’s annual conference in Boston. While we both sat in on a variety of sessions about different topics, there were some ideas that stuck with me as I left the room. If you didn’t get to attend Inbound 2014, here is a peek into what I learned and hope to implement as a result of the conference (you can also check out our Facebook album with pictures from the week). If you did attend the conference, I’d love to hear what your favorite sessions were and what stuck with you in the comments below.
Great ideas exist between the obvious and the absurd.
Jason Keath from Social Fresh spoke about the brainstorming process. If you’ve ever sat in a brainstorming session, you’ll know that obvious and absurd ideas are sometimes all that come to mind. Jason mentions that these are the ideas that are the most important to share, because the best ideas are ones that come in between these. So, although you may feel embarrassed for sharing something that may seem trivial, it can in fact be the groundwork necessary for the next great idea.
Builders vs. Drivers
Paul Roetzer from PR 20/20 gave an insightful presentation about the metrics that matter. As inbound marketers, we often try to do everything, all at once. It’s important to remember there are marketing initiatives that are “Builders” and those that are “Drivers.” “Building” activities include tactics such as blogging, creating offers and SEO. Lead generation and nurturing would fall under the “drivers” category. As a start-up company, 80% of your marketing tactics should be “builders,” and 20% should be “drivers.” As your company gets more established, the percentages will reverse and you can focus on driving initiatives 80% of the time and builders only 20%.
Why I Hate the Question “What Do You Do?”
I was immediately intrigued when I saw the title of CC Chapman’s session. I thought to myself, “this is all anyone ever asks and I hate this question too.” CC went on to explain that your job shouldn’t be your whole life or your whole purpose for existing. We need to find something we’re really passionate about and devote more time to it. What charities or causes mean the most to you? Spend your time volunteering, instead of just donating to these organizations. Get up and get away from technology and go out and do more. So, next time you want to ask someone what they do, instead ask “What do you do for employment?” or “What do you want to be known for?”
A good story grabs anyone. A good story about YOU will grab you by the shirt collar.
Marketing agencies are constantly working with potential new clients. We’ve all been in presentations or given them, and also know there’s a chance they may be boring and monotonous. Brent Hodgins from Mirren Business Development talked about how to grab someone’s attention with a compelling story – and make the plot all about them. As humans, we process emotional thoughts before the rational, which is why we all love a good story and can’t wait to see what happens when it’s built up. By making your potential client the lead actor in your story, you immediately capture their attention and make your presentation even more interesting and applicable to them.
Mature vs. Infant Blogs
Many of our clients are blogging for the first time, and therefore creating brand new company blogs. During Pamela Vaughan and Shannon Johnson’s HubSpot metrics presentation, they discussed how they differentiate between their mature and infant blogs and how they define different goals for each. As a brand new or “infant” blog, an achievable goal might be to get a certain number of new subscribers. A “mature” blog is more likely to already have a large following of subscribers, and therefore capture a larger number of leads, which would make getting a certain number of leads a realistic goal for a blog at this level.
Leadership means being present in the moment and being selfless.
Simon Sinek’s keynote session was by far my favorite. To see a version of his speech about the biology behind leadership, you can watch this video. He discussed putting away your computers and smart phones and really being in the moment. If someone comes up to you, give him or her your undivided attention, instead of half listening, half looking at your phone. Also, when you’re in a meeting and you turn your phone screen-side down, it’s not more polite. Since hearing Simon’s speech, I’ve focused on stepping away from technology and really trying to be present in the moment. Nikki and I have also encouraged the SyncShow team to apply this in our workplace. We’ll keep you posted on how it goes!
Did you attend #INBOUND14? What stuck with you and what do you hope to implement as a result?
For more information about HubSpot, check out my coworker Lauren's blog post:
Key HubSpot Features You Could be Missing Out On