Each year, HubSpot sponsors 4 days of truly inspiring events to over 10,000 inspired marketers from every industry. The conference offers over 170 educational sessions along with five pretty incredible keynote speakers. To my good fortune, the conference is held right here in Boston. I packed up my computer and a notebook, hopped on the MBTA and spent the second week of September at the Boston Convention and Event Center in beautiful Seaport.

Before I post my notes, you actually might be wondering what, exactly IS inbound marketing?

HubSpot describes Inbound Marketing: Sharing is caring and inbound is about creating and sharing content with the world. By creating content specifically designed to appeal to your dream customers, inbound attracts qualified prospects to your business and keeps them coming back for more. By publishing the right content in the right place at the right time, your marketing becomes relevant and helpful to your customers, not interruptive. Now that’s marketing people can love.

what is inbound marketing

HubSpot illustrates Inbound Marketing

I ended up with pages and pages of great takeaways – Seriously – I could talk about this for days – so if you have some time, and want to hear more, give me a call – We can set up a time to chat.  But since less is more…. I have carved my list down to

My 9 Best Takeaways from Inbound15

 

1: Without Content, You DO NOT Exist

Jason Falls, SVP of Elasticity presented “There is No Fresh Broccoli: A no-nonsense blueprint for digital marketing success.

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4, @jasonfalls” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]In order to rank on Google, you really have to deserve it.[/tweetthis]

  • How many people link to it recently
  • How many verified sites are linking to that piece of content
  • How people rate the company on the online ranking sites

2: Viral is NOT a campaign. Viral is a result.

Scott Stratten of UnMarketing‘s presentation was passionate, entertaining and spot on!  

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4, @unmarketing” hidden_hashtags=”#viral #socialmediamarketing” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]Viral is evoking emotion: funny, angry, sad, inspirational[/tweetthis]

Viral means it’s just so good that you just gotta tell the world. (or the cyber world)
We share emotion.

3: Keep Your Integrity – Keep It Real

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4 @unmarketing” hidden_hashtags=”#marketing” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ hidden_urls=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″] Integrity is NOT a renewable resource.[/tweetthis]

Once you compromise it, you DO NOT get it back.

This was another takeaway from Scott Stratten.  I thought it was so very true that it was worth its own bullet point.

Watch Scott’s presentation from Content Marketing World 2014, What You Know About Content Marketing May Be Wrong 

4: Social Media Ads Can Amplify Your Message:

Larry Kim of WordStream‘s presentation was fast-paced and packed full of brilliant tips on use of content, posting strategies and targeted, measurable methods of increasing a brand’s digital marketing success.

  • Higher Post Engagement = Higher Relevance Score
  • Higher Relevance Score = More Impression Shares and Lower Cost per Engagement

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4 @larrykim” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]Improve your Relevance Score – Determine what works best. Only promote your best stuff.[/tweetthis]

Read the full article on Wordstream , a summarization of his live presentation on Inturact or view Larry’s Slideshare presentation from Inbound15.

5: We all need to know more about our customers.

Jill Rowley, Social Selling Evangelist presented Social Selling – Connecting with the Modern Buyer. View one of her slidedecks: What Is Social Selling & Why Should Sales Do It?

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4, @jill_rowley” hidden_hashtags=”#socialselling” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]”Your network is your net worth.” – Jill Rowley[/tweetthis]

ABCing doesn’t stand for Always Be Closing — it’s Always Be Connecting.

6: My addiction to media is actually an addiction to dopamine

Each ‘to-do’ check off, each deleted email, each quick answer to a question gives us a tiny dose of dopamine, makes us feel good – but that may be challenging our ability to get real work done.

Jill Konrath, author of “Agile Selling” presented:  “When You’re Crazy Busy”  and had scores of great points to help us optimize our time.

My Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4, @jillkonrath” hidden_hashtags=”#email #dopamine” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]Break your email addiction. It’s all about the dopamine.[/tweetthis]

7: Brand Storytelling Will Win Every Time.

Mari Smith presented “Proven Ways to Generate More Traffic, Leads and Sales” (View the Slides

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4, @marismith” hidden_hashtags=”#socialmedia #content” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]Content must: Inform ~ Entertain ~ Have a Call to Action ~ [/tweetthis]

My other takeaway – Mari Smith, Peg Fitzpatrick, and Rebekah Radice could not have been any nicer.  My friend, Tricia (Friends, Food, Family), and I were thrilled to take a selfie with these queens of social media!  

social media divas at Inbound

8: Visual Marketing is how you connect and get noticed online

Peg Fitzpatrick presented some of her favorite DIY Design Hacks. View her slide deck.

Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4, @pegfitzpatrick” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_hashtags=”true” remove_hidden_urls=”true”]Images are easy to remember and quick to consume. [/tweetthis]

My favorite tool for creating images – hands down: Canva: if you haven’t tried it yet, give it a go…it’s a blast.

9: There’s just so much to do – It’s best to focus

Well, this was not anybody’s presentation during Inbound15. As I was reflecting on my 3+ days of non-stop information, it was easy to feel like I had to do it all.

But, here’s what it comes down to for me: My own focus is to partner with my clients and use my own knowledge base and skill set to bring value to a client, to help them build, maintain and grow their online presence in the best way possible for their own business. I meet the client where they are, guide them along their path toward online presence, map out new roads as they become comfortable and familiar with the process. 

My Takeaway:

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@susanfinn4″ hidden_hashtags=”#onlinepresence” url=”http://goo.gl/saFv74″ remove_hidden_urls=”true”]Meet the client where they are, guide them along their path toward online presence.[/tweetthis]

Focus – Build – Grow

It was an amazing week spent with like-minded, fun, energetic, creative people. I would love to spend some time with you to talk about any – or all – of the great presentations I saw.  We can brainstorm ways to use these ideas for your personal or professional brand.

I would love to hear from you on any of these topics.  I hope you will contact me with your thoughts and comments.

making online connections

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