The Midwest Digital Marketing Conference held annually in St. Louis, Missouri is the largest digital marketing conference in the Midwest. Industry experts and thought leaders from all over the country, representing Fortune 500 companies including Facebook and Pandora, enlightened attendees on the future of marketing and the latest digital strategies. As an attendee this year, I walked away with incredible insights on how to become a better marketer. If you’re interested in improving your digital marketing skills and recharging your career, here are five lessons learned at this year’s event.
1. Visual Marketing for Non-Designers
In the digital age, the importance of visual media cannot be ignored and the modern marketer needs to be equipped with the software and skills needed to create captivating content. There are plenty of programs and resources that any marketer can utilize to create aesthetically-pleasing content from social media posts to short videos. If you’re not an Adobe Illustrator whiz, then check out Canva’s Design School to begin learning the principles of design or shop on Creative Market for ready-to-use digital assets.
2. Creating Quality Content Faster
Content marketing is an important dimension of any inbound marketing strategy in a time when consumers are seeking out educational content and long-term solutions from brands, rather than a one-time purchase of a product or service. Creating long-form, written content that consumers will actually what to read can be simpler than you think. Beyond developing personas for your audience and understanding your demographic, install a heatmap over your different pieces of content to see what they are actually reading. Then brainstorm about how you can help them solve their pain points.
3. Tips and Tricks for Managing Social Media Trolls
If you or your company is active on social media, then you’ve probably encountered a troll or two. While social media has allowed brands to develop direct relationships and lines of communication with their customers, it has also opened them up to incessant critics. Determine a set of steps to take for responding to a social media troll that acknowledges them rather than simply blocking their ability to participate in the larger conversation about your company. These predetermined plan of action can deescalate a situation rather than bringing attention to it.
4. Learning from the Success of the World’s Top Brands
Millennials around the world have shifted popular culture and the economy in ways that industries can no longer ignore. They expect brands to do and be more than just a product or service. They want brands that align with their own personal brand; ones whose stories resonate with them. If you want to build brand loyalty, begin with storytelling. Be empathetic to customers and become apart of their lives.
5. Finding Your Tribe and Your Career Path
The thought of networking and attending huge conferences alone can make some people anxious, but they are excellent opportunities to connect and stay connected to like-minded creatives and digital marketers. The Midwest Digital Marketing Conference hosted almost 2,000 attendees this year looking for education and expertise. Mark your calendars to attend next year’s conference and continue learning the latest in digital marketing.