Learn Inbound - July 2016

8 Aug 2016

For Together Digital, this was our second time attending a Learn Inbound Event. We came back inspired by both the passion of the speakers and full of new, great info on topics such as Search Engine Optimisation, Google’s rankings, new marketing strategies to adapt and much more.

Brian Dean, founder of Backlinko

The first speaker up was Brian Dean from Backlinko, a site packed with great, actionable tips on everything from link building to improving user experience. In his talk, Brian gave us some great tips on how to improve conversion rates regardless of what your goals are. He explained his points using his own website’s conversion rate as an example, mixing his advice with broad advice on mindset and approach as well as explicit and direct ideas and actions to take.

Brian Dean of Backlinko
Brian Dean of Backlinko - Photo credit @LearnInbound on Twitter

Although his slides provided a lot of great details and info, his broader message could be broken down quite simply - Find out what your audience wants and give it to them in the best way possible that works for both you and them. To turn views into conversions you have to create an attractive offering (bonus content, exclusive discounts etc.) and present it in a compelling way.

On the more practical end, some of Brian’s ideas included:

  1. Don’t Fear the Pop-up - It may actually be much more effective that you think.
  2. Use Content Specific Incentives as Leverage - Use bonus content related to the subject you’re talking about as leverage. For example on a top 10 list blog post, offer the top 20 list to those who sign up to the newsletter.
  3. Exit intent - Throw everything at exit intents (when a user scrolls towards the back button, url or menu bar) You have nothing to lose as this person is already leaving the site.
  4. Don’t be boring with your CTAs - Use fun, upbeat Call-To-Actions. They will seem like less of an annoyance to those that aren’t converting, and will encourage ones that do.

Joanna Lord CMO of Class Pass

Next up we were treated to a presentation from the wonderful Joanna Lord of Class Pass. Class Pass is a tool for combining access to multiple gyms, fitness studios, and classes under one membership. Joanna was discussing growth especially regarding young companies or startups - why it is the most important factor for success, why and how achieving growth has changed over time, and what we can do to grow our business.

Joanna Lord of Class Pass
Joanna Lord of Class Pass

Joanna gave practical and inspiring advice about promoting growth and building a great company which included:

  • Investing in “unscalable moments of delight” by empowering the consumer-facing team to be human and be creative, giving the example of the “Pin is ridiculous” error when users try to set ‘1234’ as a password on Simple.com
  • Creating the right conditions for growth is essential. There is a myriad of ways this is done, here are two examples: 1) Building the ‘Four Pillars of a High Growth’ in your company - Product, Team, Community and X-Factor 2) Ensuring that each team are stakeholders in all the other teams i.e. Marketing should be regularly meeting with product etc.
  • Don’t fall into the trap of focusing too much time on new customer acquisition, improve customer retention and monetisation which can be 2x to 4x more lucrative.

Larry Kim, founder and CTO Mobile Monkey

The final speaker of the night was Larry Kim of PPC and SEO giants WordStream and founder of Mobile Monkey. Larry’s talk was about the so-called ‘Judgement Day’ when Google’s machine learning Rank Brain will become the most important factor in SERPs, and traditional link and on-page SEO will become less important.

If you thought this sounds a little dull, you’re wrong. Larry started by likening himself to a T-800 Terminator sent back in time to save us, and his slides somehow managed to keep this theme going throughout his entire speech, including a few gems such as his actual quote “Come with me if you want your site to live”.

Larry Kim of Word Stream
Larry Kim of  Mobile Monkey

In between the pictures of his ‘Unicorn Detection Device’ and his Weather Forecast in Unicorn Land, there was quite a bit of in-depth data being discussed. Here is a list of the four strategies that are required to survive Google’s Rank Brain Judgement Day.

  1. Optimise Headlines and Descriptions - Your headlines have to go from okay to great in order to beat Rank Brain. Make them more clickable by leveraging emotional triggers - Anger, Affirmation, Disgust etc. all can increase CTR and Conversions
  2. High Organic CTR - There is an ‘expected CTR’ for each result shown for a given query, beating that and getting a better organic click through rate will be hugely important for improving and holding your page ranking
  3. Get Conversions - Believe it or not, Google knows what a conversion looks like on any given website and this is a surprisingly important factor. In short, a good conversion rate makes Google see you as relevant and will give you a bonus, vice versa.
  4. Increase Volume and CTR with Social Ads - Users are 2x more likely to both click on your ads and convert if they are familiar with your brand, so you should use Twitter and Facebook ads that are specifically targeted to improve brand awareness with your audience. 

All in all, it was another great event from Learn Inbound - great speakers, great set-up, great free beer. We’re already looking forward to the next one!

Jack Duff

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