Invaluable Lessons from the Art of Marketing

Seth Godin Screengrab

 A screengrab from Seth’s popular blog.

Last month I attended the Art of Marketing conference. This was my first time attending and it certainly won’t be my last! They had a fantastic lineup of speakers, including the ever popular marketing guru Seth Godin. And while I could spend days discussing their presentations, here’s a short summary of my top 3 takeaways:

  1. Focus on customer relationships.
    • It’s clear that mass marketing is no longer effective so what’s important now is to figure out how we can be welcome in someone’s inbox every morning.
    • If we disappeared one day, would anyone miss us? Being missed is a sign that you’re doing something right.
    • Mitch Joel brought up a great point regarding this topic: “As marketers, how can you help the customer before they even realize that they need help?”
    • How do you do this? We add value.
  2. Add value to your relationships.
    • “Surprise and delight are amazing marketing techniques” – Brian Wong, the 23-year old CEO of Kiip.
    • Use digital tools to help gather data about your fans, customers, and/or followers: cookies, surveys, customer data & preferences, to name just a few!
    • “Don’t know what to get me for my birthday? Amazon knows.” – Mitch Joel
    • Amazon is a great example of how to store valuable customer information so that it adds value for the customer the next time they visit Amazon’s website.
    • Alternatively, go beyond your product and create interest elsewhere: for example, Charmin has created a genius app (because they know nobody is without their smartphone these days) called “Sit or Squat,” which uses your current location and lets you know where the nearest public washrooms are.
    • So how did Amazon and Charmin know to do this? They created connections with their customers (and that’s exactly what we should be doing).
  3. Create connections.
    • Take advantage of social media & online platforms to put yourself out there.
    • Want to know what your customers want? Ask them! The worst they can say is no.
    • Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable and human: this is how we connect with others.
    • At the end of the day, an emotional connection is what makes marketing successful.
    • “If you want someone to build a relationship with you, don’t try to build a relationship with them. Care about them.” – Keith Ferrazzi
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The Art of Marketing

(Apologies for this blurry photo – it was the only one I managed to take as I was frantically Tweeting & writing notes)

Bonus: During Q&A someone asked Seth what he thought about the upcoming anti-spam law. His answer? This law will affect the scummier marketing guys out there; for quality marketers (like ourselves), rules like these are our friends. This will be the ultimate test of “do people trust you and/or care enough about what you are marketing?”

If you want to know more, be sure to check my Tweets (I Tweeted a lot that day).


Leave a comment

  1. April 22, 2014 / 7:31 am

    Biggest thing for me was focus on the building an audience, not of the masses, but of the relative few who believe in and trust you.

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