In September, I was fortunate to attend the Inbound15 conference in Boston. This 4 day annual event brings together marketing and sales professionals from around the globe to be inspired, get educated, make connections and transform business. It’s a big call, but I think they pull it off!
For attendees it’s something of a marathon, requiring an intense amount of stamina, caffeine, business cards and digital device recharging stations. But once you’ve got a handle on that, it’s a brilliant opportunity to get together with passionate marketers to share ideas and learn the cutting edge techniques that inbound marketers are using to attract, convert and delight customers.
This year saw attendee numbers swell from 10,000 to more than 14,000 delegates. With more than 170 sessions and 5 keynotes, there was a lot to take in. But after some deliberation, here are my 3 key takeaways from Inbound15 for Brisbane marketers.
The inbound movement is now global
The inbound movement gets bigger each year and its reach now stretches around the global. This year there was an international desk in the trade exhibition area where you could pin your country on the map and it really did cover the globe.
I met people from as far away as Finland who run their own inbound agency. Needless to say, they were quite impressed to meet Australians sporting badges stating “I just flew 24 hours to get here”!
One thing I’ve noticed particularly about inbound, is that people are very generous. They will take the time to get to know you and your business, and share their experiences and learnings with you. The funny thing about meeting so many people from different industries and different countries is that in all those ‘differents’, you discover a lot of ‘same’. Everyone is passionate about inbound, facing challenges and keen to delight customers in the best possible way.
For marketers in Brisbane, the message is clear. Inbound marketing is taking off and there are plenty of opportunities for marketers with an interest in inbound to join the movement and start building their skills.
Inbound marketers want practical tips for implementing inbound strategies
The most popular sessions at the conference were focused on the practical tips, tricks and hacks for implementing inbound marketing. The movement is growing, but we all want to know how we can get the most out of the methodology, and how to successfully execute inbound campaigns.
Some of the most over-subscribed sessions, the ones that filled up no matter how many encore sessions were held, explored the integration of social media and inbound marketing. Sessions like ‘The intersection of content and social media’ by Sonia Simone, Chief Content Officer at Copyblogger and ‘Top 10 social media hacks of all time’.
It’s clear that with technology changing rapidly, we are all trying to keep up and learning the latest tips on implementing inbound from the experts is extremely desirable.
Digital PR is more important for inbound than ever
It seems that many businesses that are investing in inbound strategies want to shift focus from just simply producing content, to promoting content to maximise exposure and inbound leads.
With so much content being produced and shared online every day, businesses and inbound marketers realise that it’s important to maximise the value from each piece of content by promoting it in a variety of ways. Many of the conference sessions looked at the different digital channels and opportunities that exist to cross-promote content, reach journalists and influencers and have personal conversations with your audience.
Attending Inbound in Boston is something that every inbound marketer, and for that matter, every marketer with an interest in digital marketing, should aspire to do at least once.
All of the online resources and endless videos can’t make up for the truly amazing experience of being in a room with so many marketers from around the world. There is no substitute for the connections you make, the on-going friendships forged, or the inspiration you leave with to truly transform your business.
If you're keen to catch up on more of Inbound15 online, Inbound.org has a fantastic selection of resources from the conference, covering everything from presentations to people’s personal session notes.
If you want to know more about inbound marketing, and how it can transform your business, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me at b:content marketing.