What We Learned At Digital Summit 2016

The Ironistic team went to Digital Summit DC, a digital marketing conference held in Washington, DC in September, for the second year in a row. Here’s what we learned.

“Biggest take away for me was a reminder to never stop thinking and creating for our clients. When it comes to marketing, we’ve always got to be bigger, braver, bolder. Right, Ann Handley? Thanks for the push to always follow the Rule of FIWTSBS (Find Interesting Ways To Say Boring Stuff). I’m in!”


“I loved that several speakers echoed our mantra: A Website is Never Finished. The day your website goes live is the day the fun part starts! You can take advantage of user data to streamline your website to get users the information they want in order to convert them to customers more efficiently. You need to reduce friction (conference buzzword).”


“One of the big takeaways for me from the conference was making sure that the metrics you are measuring and reporting on align with your campaign goals. For example, if you’re sending out an email for a new product and your goal is to get customers to buy the product, your click-through rate will be a much better indicator of how successful that email campaign was as opposed to the open rate. It’s all about keeping your goals in mind and figuring out the best way to determine your success with meeting those goals.”


“My biggest takeaway was to remember that at the end of the day, we’re marketing to people. People don’t really like to be advertised to: think of the popularity of AdBlocker and ad-free services such as Spotify Premium and Hulu Plus. So, we should start thinking of a human-centered rather than a media-centered approach to marketing. Often times, marketers forget the human factor.”

~Emilia (thanks to @LeighGeorge for the great session!)

“We can’t rely on traditional practices anymore. A big takeaway from this year’s digital summit for me was to be ‘bigger, better and bolder’ with marketing campaigns. Corporate language, although appropriate in some situations, is boring to customers and in a world with tiny attention spans, companies need to stand apart in everything they do. The question posed that hit home for me was, if you were to take off the colors, logo and other branding from content, would you be able to distinguish your website, blog posts or other content from any other company in the industry? Different is better and this inspired me to take more risks and not worry about fitting within the box.”


“My biggest takeaway was that you have to build a marketing model around your existing client and think: what opportunities are there to serve them better? A great example is loyalty programs. Loyalty programs, if done right, should make people loyal to the brand, not the transaction or offer. Loyalty is also a great brand advocate. Offer a memorable brand experience for your loyal fan base and they’ll pretty much do your marketing for you. Give people a great experience so that they create content for you.”



 “The resonating theme at this conference was that organizations are changing and adapting (everything from their business approach to their org chart) for an environment focused on the intersection of marketing technologies and the importance of the customer’s experience. Marketing is about people and using today’s technology and data wisely. It’s about understanding the needs of your audience and then delivering on what they need and want from your brand. It’s about good content that’s relevant, timely, and engaging. It’s about knowing who you are as a company, your tone, your voice and not being shy about using them. It’s about recognizing and rewarding your tribe. It’s about a memorable, consistent, reliable experience from touchpoint to touchpoint. Thanks to new technologies and seemingly endless amounts of data, creativity rules the day. If we do our job well, we can produce amazing, personalized, thoughtful customer experiences with limitless possibilities.”


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