Last weekend, I attended the WVU IMC Integrate 2014 Conference in Morgantown, West Virginia. I took three valuable insights away from the conference:
(1) The value of personal interaction with clients should not be undervalued,
(2) Whether you you succeed or fail isn’t as important as what you learn in the process, and
(3) My dress sock game is legit!
My favorite speaker was Pam Didner, a Global Integrated Marketing Strategist from Intel Corporation, who managed to make even 8:30 a.m. learning enjoyable with her beautiful personality. She offered great, data-backed illustrations of how innovative businesses are blending digital and terrestrial marketing to advance their brands. For example, check out this Korean grocery store that created a way for customers to grocery shop with their smart phones while waiting for the subway train! Tesco QR Code Subway Store. While listening to this lecture, I had an a-ha moment: in order to reach buyers on the B2C and B2B side who are on their digital devices over 5 hours a day (eMarketer), we absolutely have to develop content that is personified and shows the brand’s personality.
The conference culminated in a Keynote Dinner featuring Elliot Nix, Head of Media Solutions – Tech, Google. Before I speak on this event, let me revert back to my small town upbringing with this comment: “someone stuck their foot in the roast beef, it was amazing.” Now that I’ve got that out of the way—Mr. Nix spoke with us about venturing into unprecedented territory, and what innovative technology might mean for the future. The tactics he described were simple: “find issues your target markets experience and make a solution.” He used the example of Google Glass, which was developed to remedy the disconnect a person experiences when looking down at a mobile device.
Then came the cherry on top: Mr. Nix made sure we understood that to try and fail is no worse than to try and succeed, as long as you learn from the analytics. In fact, he let us know that consumers feel more comfortable with brands that have failed, learned, and improved from the experience.
To sum up the weekend, it was really a grand experience filled with beautiful weather, insightful speakers, and actionable thoughts about how to advance brands through strategic use of technology. Oh yeah, did I mention my socks? I charge you to assess your organization and see if you are innovating and integrating--or we can do the heavy lifting for you at Mythology LLC, via our Strategy Workshop giveaway.