After a decent break since their all day event in October Learn Inbound returned to the Academy on Middle Abbey Street with a great start to the new year!
It was a return to the normal evening format this time with doors opening at 6 pm which meant we had a record breaking seven members of the marketing team attending! Plenty of finger food ready to be tucked into, as per usual, so after adequately stuffing our faces, we found our seats in time for the first speaker;
Stephen Kenwright of Branded3
Stephen was discussing the ‘State of Search in Ireland’. His talk was based on an interesting premise which he related to the Irish Football team - Just like they play better when playing their own brand of football and not trying to play the Italian style, the Irish should be marketing like Irish.
He elaborated on this point by explaining the ways in which the Irish market is different to that of the UK and other countries. For example, Ireland is an incredibly mobile country, having the highest mobile internet penetration of anywhere in Europe, North America, and South America. This is something that is often overlooked by developers, designers, and indeed marketers who often get stuck in the mindset of creating for desktop first, then making the changes to fit that into mobile.
Dana DiTomaso of Kick Point
Dana was next up with ‘Who are we writing for? Choose fact over fiction’. This talk focused mainly on the development and use of personas. Personas can seem confusing, so where do you start? Begin by identifying some of your best customers; once you have them, ask questions which give would you a tacit understanding of who they are, not just their demographic info - What browser do you use? What compels you to share something on Facebook? etc.
Once that information has been gathered, use it to form the summary of the type of person they are. Dana referred to the common template - ‘I am a (blank), who wants to (blank), so I can (blank)’. For example - ‘I am a mid-20s woman a few years out of college, who wants to get updates and news stories about celebrities so that I can keep in the loop’. This persona was chosen intentionally as it is one that Buzzfeed uses. The other used by Buzzfeed is this persona’s mother. If two personas are good enough for Buzzfeed, you don’t need eight different ones - stick to less than 5.
While important, personas should be simple enough to make sense to anyone at a glance, non-marketers included. It’s good to remember that they are real people too, not just faceless ‘users’.
After a short break we got the final speaker of the evening:
Samantha Noble of Koozai
This talk entitled ‘The Adventures of Audience Understanding’ came from an experienced and natural public speaker in Noble. She initially admitted that when she heard the topic of the previous speaker, Dana, she was afraid that they might be overlapping a lot due to their similar subject - customer personas. However, she was confident that the two talks could ultimately complement each other.
Samantha shared her view that data is a business’ UMP (Unique Marketing Point) and that not utilising this information is a big failing point for many. There are tonnes of ways to compile information about your customers - Google Analytics, Bing analytics, Facebook insights, etc. Sam believes that if you use the insights gained from these tools to form personas, you can understand your customers better and capture more of the untapped audience that visits your site, i.e., more of the 95% of visitors that don’t convert.
Samantha continued by bringing us through some of the tools she uses from understanding customers, to finding similar audiences, to persona development tool using real data and explaining how this information could benefit us.
After a brief Q&A with Sam, Barry Adams wrapped up the show. All in all, it was another great Learn Inbound event which left us enlightened about the continuously advancing digital marketing world and eager to try out some of the tips and tricks we learned!
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