2018 Conference Recap

Business owners and marketing professionals gathered for the first, annual Digital Toolbox Conference on Aug 29, 2018. The half-day event featured six presentations by marketing professionals as well as two networking sessions contributing to a lively, interactive afternoon.

The program was divided into three distinct sections: content, conversion, and competitive advantage.

Part One: Content

How Not to Bore Your Customers

Jennifer Riley Simon opened the conference with a conversation on creating relevant content. She suggested that to do that businesses let go of the idea that their content is about their business. It might sound a little crazy, but the truth is your customers care about themselves. So if you find out what is important to them and create content which meets their objectives, they are more likely to pay attention to you.

At the same time, you have to create content which is authentic for your company. Don’t promise things you can’t deliver or pretend to be something you aren’t. Customers will see right through you.

Jennifer shared a preview of her presentation on More Than a Few Words.  Listen Now:

Earn the Click

What good is great content if no one bothers to read it? Allison Carter shared several of her favorite tricks for creating headlines which drive action.

One of the most surprising tips for me was the idea of turning questions into what she called “Jeopardy Statements.”

You see, we all have too many questions in our lives. What we need are answers. Simply changing your phrasing from “What should business owners do?” to “Here’s what business owners should do!” will dramatically improve your open rate.

Allison shared a preview of her presentation on More Than a Few Words. Listen Now:

Part Two: Conversion

Click This

Sure lots of people come to your website, but that isn’t enough to drive sales. You need to convert those random visitors into prospective customers and the first step is to get them to give you an email address. That is where landing pages come in.

In her presentation, Lorraine Ball talked about the how, not the why, of landing pages.   She discussed how the process begins with a valuable offer, something you know your customers want to know.

Conversion happens on a simple, clear landing page, offering only one solution. Don’t muddy it up with too many choices.

Lorraine shared a preview of her presentation on More Than a Few Words. Listen Now:

Reach the Right People With Google Ads

You have built it, now how do you get the people to come? A well thought out Google Ads campaign can be a great tool.

However, if you don’t pay attention to the little details you may end up spending way too much money according to Michelle McNally.

In her presentation, Michelle talked about keywords and the importance of geotargeting. If you only sell products in Indiana, don’t waste money showing your ads to people in Denver. It sounds logical, but many businesses fail to make that adjustment before starting their campaign.

Michelle shared a preview of her presentation on More Than a Few Words. Listen Now:

Part Three: Competitive Advantage

The third segment of the conference focused on opportunities for businesses to create digital marketing which help them stand out. Pinterest and podcasting aren’t mainstream marketing tactics yet, so before the playing field gets too crowded you have an opportunity to carve out your space.

Pinterest for Business

While status updates on Facebook or tweets are gone in a few hours, or even a few minutes, Pinterest posts live on and on. The average pin is repinned 11 times.

In her presentation, Dana Nelson talked about how to design pins which outperform the average. She showed examples of lighter images, colorful images, and textured backgrounds all of which will stand out on the page.

Beyond attracting attention in the timeline, businesses want pins to drive action. That’s where the structure of the text on the pin is so important with a large headline and smaller text pointing to the bottom of the pin and a call to action.

Dana shared a great tool Promo Republic. Want to give it a try?  Use discount code PROMO20 here:  

Dana shared a preview of her presentation on More Than a Few Words. Listen Now:

 

Live in the Ears, Heads, and Hearts of Your Audience

Throughout the day, the presenters talked about authenticity.  Well, there is nothing more authentic than sharing your thoughts in your own voice. Podcasting lets you do just that.

And as Jen Edds explained, it isn’t that difficult or that expensive.  Using affordable microphones and simple sound editing software, you could be a radio host in no time.

If, however, you are not ready to take the plunge, you can still leverage podcasting by being a guest on other podcasts. Buy a good microphone, find a quiet place to record, and create a pitch to send to podcast hosts looking for interesting guests.

Jen shared a preview of her presentation on More Than a Few Words. Listen Now:

Download the Presentations

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