Attending conferences is always a mix of dread and anticipation—what am I going to learn? Who will I meet? Will I be able to get the most out of the sessions I pick?
Last week’s MarketMix 2011 had a nice complement of interesting sessions (everything from group buying to optimizing your LinkedIn for career growth) and its social media presence was formidable—I heard from our PSAMA representative that #MarketMix was the top trending hashtag for Seattle by early afternoon! It was also fun to follow the hashtag during break-out sessions to snag a glimpse of what others were learning.
One particularly powerful point was the value of partnerships. Speakers from PEMCO, Microsoft, and Virgin America each talked about how they embrace partnerships as a way to provide benefit for all brands involved and save money. For instance, during Microsoft’s recent Dynamics CRM 2011 launch, Microsoft encouraged partners to syndicate the launch event on their websites. Porter Gale reminded us that Virgin America still works like a start-up, which means heavily leveraging partnerships with companies like HBO and Entourage. Virgin also recently assisted the City of San Francisco Animal Care and Control (SF ACC) by flying Chihuahuas from San Francisco to New York so the dogs could be adopted into loving new homes (this garnered them a huge amount of free press, as you can imagine!).
Another relevant point for businesses was that you need to give people the opportunity to share. If you make it easy for them to share, they will! This point was driven home by Rod Brooks, VP & CMO of PEMCO Insurance, when he talked about how giving people a place to do something, share something, or get something has helped PEMCO integrate the voice of the customer.
I find that listening to other voices in the business always teaches me something and MarketMix helped me find new voices to follow, including @bcahill, a principal at social media agency Banyan Branch; @BrianSolis, a prominent author on social media and business; and @NW_Mktg_Guy, the CMO of Pemco.
If you made to to MarketMix, what were your favorite insights? Who did you follow? What did you learn?