Last week, I attended #FutureM15 in downtown Boston. It was a whirlwind of strategic insight, valuable advice, marketing tips and social media best practices. Throughout my time at the conference, I noticed that certain themes emerged from the many industry leaders speaking at this event. Here are my three overarching takeaways from Future M:
From the first speaker I saw to the very last, this message rang true. Many presenters spoke about the need to take risks as marketers, to not be afraid to mess up and to continue to test the norm in the industry in order to stay fresh, innovative and effective. In an age when things are constantly changing, it’s important to stay ahead of the curve. As keynote speaker Mick Ebeling said, “Commit first, then figure it out.”
There was also a lot of talk about how to reach and engage with Millennials and Generation Z in the digital world of marketing. Many took a deeper dive into what types of content these audiences like. Many presenters agreed these demographics are likely to engage with authentic, genuine, moving content from brands they feel they can trust. Transparency and authenticity were two key elements many speakers mentioned when discussing the process of creating this type of content.
This is one underlying theme I found tied into each of the above takeaways. Brands that do good will naturally receive much more attention and engagement, especially from younger demographics. If a brand does something genuine, it will create organic ripples in the digital world. And don’t be ashamed to back this kind of content up with ad spend. In the words of Jenn Eldin, “Just because it’s paid for doesn’t mean it’s not authentic.”
Overall, I believe these three takeaways frame the direction in which the digital marketing industry is heading. Don’t be afraid to take risks, create engaging, authentic content and do your best to contribute to something greater than your product or service while doing so.