Marketing Week Live 2018: Bring on the Marketing Revolution…

Robots can tweet, balloon animals are cool again, and you can brand jelly beans... Tenfold asks what else is in store for marketing in 2018.

On Wednesday, the Tenfold team attended Marketing Week Live 2018 for a day of talks on the marketing industry ‘revolution’ and where it might be headed.

There were a number of interesting exhibits, including popcorn, AI-driven Twitter robots, and even a balloon animal stand. Not to mention, the abundance of goodie bags, free pens and an opportunity to break the Guinness World Record for speedy lego building. (Unfortunately, I was knocked off that leaderboard pretty quickly…)

All in all it was an amazing day and the talks provoked some interesting discussion around what we do as marketers, and how we can bring even more success to our clients. I wanted to share some of these insights, so without further ado here is Tenfold’s guide to surviving the marketing revolution of 2018…

Boycott the Buzzwords

We’re all guilty of using a buzzword every now and then. If it’s not ‘digital’ or ‘millennial’ it’s ‘agile’. We have to ask ourselves, what do we actually mean when we use these words?

One of the speakers, Mark Ritson, a professor of marketing from Melbourne Business School, explored this with the buzzword ‘digital’ as an example:

Digital marketing is just marketing. It’s like saying you work with the ‘world wide web’. In today’s industry it is an outdated word… almost everything in marketing is digital. Mark Ritson, Professor of Marketing

And he has a point – a few years ago claiming to be in ‘digital marketing’ would have sounded ahead of the curve, but as the majority of our content has moved into the digital space, it has become a redundant term. When writing copy, it’s important to communicate your message in the simplest way possible. A phrase we heard a lot from the speakers was: “cut the bullsh*t”.

By boycotting the buzzwords in your marketing, you’re demonstrating transparency and knowledge that many customers crave. They don’t want to hear something that sounds good, they want to hear something that will actually work for them. So, be concise in your communications and focus on building trust through strategic action.

The Difference between Stereotype and Insight is Data

When it comes to targeting certain demographics, there is a thin line between a stereotype and an insight. It’s a line that we walk all the time when constructing Buyer Personas for our clients. Former Marketer of the Year and architect of the This Girl Can campaign Tanya Joseph, put it this way:

If we take the demographic of women between the ages of 18-24 and say that they ALL like pink, that would be a stereotype. However, if we looked at that same group and found they were buying more pink items than blue that would be an insight… The difference is data. Tanya Joseph

It’s incredibly important that we as marketers rely on data to make insights into what entire groups of people want to buy or want to hear. Otherwise our marketing will not hit the mark. Targeted messages only work when the data that backs them up is solid.

This mistake is most commonly made when using another popular buzzword, ‘millennial’. We are constantly exposed to content aimed at ‘millennials’, but does this demographic even exist? It is such a huge number of people whose only common attribute is age. It’s time that we start targeting our content based on proven commonality through data, not stereotypes. ‘Millennial’ is a buzzword that definitely needs to stay in marketing history.

The Key to Lead Conversion is Social Media

Social media has become increasingly important in all forms of marketing. And yet, on average we only spend 10-11% of our budget investing in it. The head marketing strategist of AdRoll, Sarah Cunningham, gave a brilliant talk on this topic and explored how we can all create ‘impactful’ social media campaigns in 2018.

Here are a few of the key points:

1. Look for social media people with the right skills

These skills are: Content, Acquisition and Activation.

  • The content skill requires a natural voice online, and the ability to connect with your clients on all channels.
  • The acquisition skill is all about reaching the right people at the right time and on the right channel.
  • And finally, the activation skill means you can monetise your social media presence and prove ROI. You can turn ‘likes’ into business.

Sarah suggested that one team member should be responsible for one skill, however if you’re a smaller company, you simply have to split your time (and your budget) evenly between these three areas of social media campaigning.

2. Think mobile first

There are currently 2.1 billion smartphone users worldwide, and 61% of their time spent online is on mobile. Mobile optimisation is no longer an add-on feature for the desktop site, in fact it has overtaken the desktop site in consumer usage. Never before has it been more important to ensure that a) your website is optimised for mobile, and b) that your mobile page load time is fast.

In fact, if people have a negative experience on your mobile site due to load time, they are 62% less likely to return to your website on any device.

3. Create a smart budget

When creating a budget for social media, it’s important to  take this data into account:

  • Past campaign lead conversion performance.
  • Industry benchmarks.
  • Social media analytics i.e. click through rate and who opted in to communications, etc.

Data can predict how your future campaigns will do online and with your targeted leads. Invest more in the areas that aren’t doing so well, take a step back and strategise before you create.

Final Thoughts

We had a great time at Marketing Week Live 2018 and got some brilliant insights into where marketing is headed. We had some good food, even better popcorn, and a lot of fun. I hope you can take some of that energy and inspiration with you from this blog and will continue to question what makes a good marketer. We can always be and do better at what we love. Looking forward to next year!

If you attended #MWLive18, let us know what you thought of the event in the comments!