Key Takeaways from Internet Summit 2016
Last week, five members of the Command Partners team had the opportunity for learning and growth at Internet Summit 2016, a two-day digital marketing conference in Raleigh, NC. We were able to hear from some of the top leaders in digital marketing on topics ranging from social media to advertising to SEO and much more.
Here are our key takeaways:
As a five-time alum of Internet Summit, I have always found a ton of value in this local conference for the connections, networking and content available. This year was no different. Overall, the tone was “content is everything, but the medium is the message.” Your message needs to co-evolve with the medium/channel it's being sent through, as Patrick Vlaskovits pointed out. Facebook is not everything and should not be treated as your only marketing channel. It’s getting more expensive and harder to reach your audience on that channel. During Ann Hadley’s keynote, she told us to start with your story. Make it bigger (a movement) and be brave and bold with the tone and content while telling the brand’s story. We have to stop playing it safe in content marketing. Morgan Spurlock challenged us to embrace the opportunity we have as storytellers, as there is no better time to create content and make a living off that passion.
Some stats shared during the conference:
Globally, only <5% of web traffic referrals is from Facebook - Rand Fishkin
1.6 billion people are using messaging apps, next year will be over 2 billion
We only need 13 milliseconds to identify an image
Over 80 Million photos are shared everyday on instagram
~50% of global video views are now on mobile devices
80% of video gets played without sound on Facebook feeds
Snapchat users are racking up 10 Billion video views per day with more active users than Twitter - Laura Wilson
Content was a key focus again this year at Internet Summit, and many of the sessions served as excellent reminders for the team at Command Partners to look for content everywhere. We produce a huge amount of content in crowdfunding campaign pages, sales emails, emails with clients, and reports; and much of this content can easily be repurposed for blog posts to help inform the startup community.
As an Internet Summit first-timer, I was thrilled when I learned that the meat of the conference revolved around content marketing. Many keynote speaks’s messages revolved around the importance of creating engaging content that told a story, rather than simply selling a product, which I felt we could relate to in the crowdfunding department. In addition to focusing on the goal of shareability vs virality, Internet Summit wasn’t just content marketing-based. Between learning more about social media strategies and marketing to millennials, I learned new concepts and programs that I was able to bring back to my department to implement during our day-to-day.
Once again, Internet Summit proved to be two jam-packed days of great information and reminders for those in the digital marketing space. Two of the most engaging sessions I attended were Rand Fishkin and Ann Handley’s keynotes. Unsurprisingly, both speeches focused largely on content creation, but there was a surprising common thread of advice: Instead of focusing on creating content that immediately yields conversions, focus on creating content that engages consumers and makes them come back for more. Consumers who engage with your content multiple times before converting are ultimately the better, longer-term customers that you want.
It was great to see a lot of the focus not only on content, but also on UX. It’s so easy to get caught up in the technical aspects of optimizing your website that you sometimes forget that a website has to look and function beautifully as well. Antonio Casanova’s session on UX + SEO was a great refresher on how you can marry technical optimization while not compromising the user experience.
Internet Summit 2016 was a great time of learning and growing for the Command Partners team. We came back to the office ready to strategize and find ways to implement what we learned for our clients, from content marketing tips to UI/UX tricks and much more. We’re excited to head into 2017 with a fresh perspective on digital marketing
Interested in learning more about how we can use the strategies we picked up at Internet Summit for your company? Get in touch with us today - we look forward to hearing from you!