My Twitter Summary of the Inbound Marketing Conference

Inbound Marketing Summit LogoA big thank you to Justin Levy, Chris Brogan and the New Marketing Labs team for putting together a wonderful event, the Inbound Marketing Summit at the home of the New England Patriots, Gillette Stadium, in Foxboro, Massachusetts this past week.

Like any good conference, sometimes I was paying attention to the speakers. Sometimes I was networking in the back. The networking was invaluable and I was so pleased to have an opportunity to meet so many heavy-hitter bloggers, inbound marketing book authors and other highly notable marketers like Dharmesh Shah, Amber Naslund, C.C. Chapman, Ann Handley, David Meerman Scott, Scott Stratten, John Jantsch and many others. I’ve already read most of their books and encourage you to do so as well.

One quick shout-out of appreciation to Tonya Cannariato for providing an interesting conversation and generous ride back to Logan airport after the conference ended.

Instead of simply rehashing the talks, I thought it might be interesting to memorialize what I was thinking in the moment. Luckily, I live-tweeted. A lot. Over 200 times in 2 days.

So, with a major hat-tip to David Meerman Scott who has a book coming out later this year entitled “Real Time Marketing & PR“, here is a part of my real-time record of the event.

Day 1

On the first day (there were two) I completely underestimated the traffic and arrived late, so I missed the first couple of speakers. These are simply the talks that I tweeted during.

Real-Time Marketing and PRDavid Meerman Scott

Main takeaway: Scott has shifted from focusing on content marketing, which was a huge theme of the entire conference, to “real-time” marketing. I look forward to his upcoming book on the topic (link above).

Key tweets:

  • RT @cc_chapman: “Social media is the tools. Realtime is the mindset. ” – @dmscott #ims10
  • Didn’t realize #IMS10 was this big. Hundreds here. Great to see the interest in inbound marketing.

Experiential Marketing: From Live to the Web and Back AgainTim Hayden

Main takeaway: Mobile is huge and as a marketer you need to pay attention. Drive online to offline and vice versa.

Key tweets:

  • 90% of word-of-mouth takes place *offline* #ims10
  • 3 social touchpoints – live, mobile, online. – Tim Hayden #ims10
  • Forrester: 1 of 4 Americans under 44 uses a smartphone. #ims10
  • Tim Hayden – Dammit, that Flash sure was sexy a couple years ago (comment on mobile website experiences.) #ims10

What You’re Missing By Measuring Social Media OnlineTom Webster

Main takeaway: Social media ROI is still hard to figure out, but there are ways.

Key tweets:

  • 39 million check social networks more than once per day – was only 18 million in 2009 – @webby2001 #ims10
  • Nearly 30% of tweets actually *do* get a response. Compare that to cold calling or direct mail. @webby2001 #ims10
  • From @webby2001 If you only measure the effect of response on twitter/FB, you’re only measuring if you’re good at twitter/FB. #ims10
  • The funnel’s not dead, but people enter it at all different points now – not just at the top. @webby2001 #ims10
  • Ask about social media use in marketing surveys. Measure before, during and after. – @webby2001 #ims10

Social Media Marketing For the Rest of UsGail Goodman

Main takeaway: Don’t treat social media as a broadcast system. It’s for real conversations with real people. It’s intimate marketing and it takes time.

Key tweets:

  • You can engage in inbound marketing efforts at your own pace. The more you do the faster it will grow. – Gail Goodman #ims10
  • Social media marketing is not instantaneous – @gail_goodman @ims10
  • Use social media to have real, intimate conversations with your customers. Small scale promos work. @gail_goodman #ims10
  • You are far better off with a small, engaged audience than a large, casual following – @gail_goodman #ims10 (YES!)

If I Started NowChris Brogan

Main takeaway: Build your list. Treat it like gold.

Key tweets:

Why You Should be Using a CMS to Manage Your Website and Content - Panel discussion with Ron West, Brett Zucker, Byron White, Vern Imrich and Joe Henriques

Main takeaway: As always, a CMS is not an optional element. Choosing the right CMS is key.

Key tweets:

  • RT @CassieAtESM: Can your CMS handle user-generated content – comments, outside blogs, etc… #ims10
  • RT @adempsterbh: RT @CassieAtESM: Ownership of CMS shifting from IT to Marketing. #ims10
  • RT @AdamHoldenBache: When you upgrade your website and migrate content, think about how you move your house. Don’t pack the junk. #IMS10

Marketing Lessons From the Grateful Dead – Brian Halligan and David Meerman Scott

Main takeaway: Halligan and Scott recently co-authored a book with this same title. Looks like fun. I should pick it up.

Key tweets:

Email 2.0: The Social InboxGreg Cangialosi

Main takeaway: If anything, good email marketing has only become more important.

Key tweets:

Everyone Is Wrong About Influence (Except Your Customers)Valeria Maltoni

Main takeaway: Content marketing works.

Key tweets:

Un-MarketingScott Stratten

Main takeaway: Stratten is a phenomenal and extremely funny speaker. He woke everyone in the room up and this was my favorite talk of the entire conference. The second his talk was over I ordered his book. Also, he made so many great points that I had trouble reducing the following list of tweets.

Key tweets:

Day 2

Lead Conversion: 6 Steps to Plug a Leaky Inefficient Marketing & Sales FunnelColin Daymude

Main takeaway: The traditional sales process has changed. Stop with the hard sell. Nurture.

Key tweets:

  • The funnel is upside down. You don’t ask somebody to marry you on the first date. @infusionsoft #ims10
  • Most people are visual. This is why video works so well online. #ims10
  • Technology has made us all into commodities. @infusionsoft #ims10
  • In marketing, initiate a relationship. Goal is to get to second date. Educate. @infusionsoft #ims10
  • Need to overcome buyer’s remorse. @infusionsoft #ims10

Battlefield PR- How the U.S. Air Force Empowers Communicators – Captain Nathan Broshear

Main takeaway: The US armed forces are doing a better job with social media and PR than I had previously thought. If you allow your people to speak to customers on the phone, why do you not let them participate in social media?

Key tweets:

  • The people doing the best communicating are not the PR flaks. Cpt. Broshear – US Air Force #ims10
  • “If you can’t tell your message in 140 characters, you don’t know what you’re talking about.” – Cpt. Nathan Broshear, US Air Force #ims10
  • RT @dmscott: #IMS10 @usairforce “If you trust an 18 year old airman with a $250 million plane, you can trust them on Facebook.”

The Science of Search Engine RankingsRand Fishkin

Main takeaway: I was pretty surprised that Fishkin has found almost no change in search behavior due to Google Instant. Diverse link building is absolutely critical to strong SEO.

Key tweets:

  • If your domain name exactly matches a keyword phrase, that has a very high correlation to showing up at the top of search @randfish #ims10
  • From @randfish – on-page SEO efforts have only minor impact overall @randfish #ims10
  • Better to get 100 links from 100 websites than 1000 links from 1 website. #seo @randfish #ims10
  • No dramatic change in searching due to Google Instant according to @randfish #ims10
  • RT @randfish: Want social traffic? Digg is done. Stumbleupon is better. Twitter’s even better. (via @dharmesh) #ims10

Driving More Qualified Leads into Your Funnel – Panel Discussion with Chris Brogan, Patti Fousek, Benjamin Diggles, Bernie Borges and Mike Damphousse

Main takeaway: More validation of the power of inbound marketing to produce great results.

Key tweets:

  • RT @JennBub: Mike Damphouse: engage people who engage others, referrals may come from people who never buy from you #ims10
  • Good inbound marketing converts “cold” calling into “warm” calling. Inbound *enables* good outbound. #ims10
  • “Customer service is the new black” – @chrisbrogan in early 2008. Has CS gotten better generally since then? #ims10

Late Night Comedy meets Corporate Social MediaTim Washer

Main takeaway: I need to be funnier. We all do.

Key tweets:

  • The corporate world can definitely use more humor. #ims10
  • Humor humanizes the brand, evokes positive emotion, breaks through. @timwasher #ims10
  • Story trumps messaging. Beware the committee. @timwasher #ims10

Social Media Metrics You Probably Aren’t Measuring But Should BeNichole Kelly

Main takeaway: You can measure the fact that your best customers correlate with the ones engaging with you through social media.

Key tweets:

Competitive Intelligence: Tips To Gain Insights From OthersDharmesh Shah

Main takeaway: Digg is dead? Wow, they *really* screwed up. Also, it’s important to get everybody in the company involved in blogging and social media. Don’t keep it in a silo.

Key tweets:

Social Media’s Second ActC.C. Chapman

Main takeaway: C.C. suggested that agencies should educate clients on inbound marketing because nobody can write about a company as well as the people inside the company. But what do you do when a client doesn’t have the time or resources to do it internally? What if that’s exactly the reason they want to work with an agency?

Key tweets:

  • #smt #ims10 @cc_chapman Social media is about conversations, cliche or not
  • #smt #ims10 @cc_chapman The agency’s job is to educate clients to do this stuff themselves. [but they often don't want to do it themselves]

The Real Business of CommunityAmber Naslund

Main takeaway: Every company of significance will have a “community manager” soon enough, though they might not be called that. After all, didn’t a “community organizer” just become the President of the United States?

Key tweets:

  • #ims10 @AmberCadabra If you are a marketer it’s actually important to know how to write.
  • RT @vimrich: @AmberCadabra spend 75% of time cultivating the people already IN your community – they will help you expand out #IMS10

As mentioned earlier, I actually tweeted more than 200 times during the conference. The tweets listed above are merely the highlights. To see more from the conference, and to discuss inbound marketing in real time, follow me on Twitter.

About Us

Abstract Edge is a creative boutique online marketing agency that has launched new brands for Clairol and Vera Wang, inspired a million moms to march on Washington, assisted American Idol’s fight against malaria, and helped increase web traffic so successfully for Discover Magazine that it was recently acquired.

Our primary offices are in New York and Baltimore and we have clients throughout the US. You can read more about us here.

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