Guest Post: My Top 5 Action Items from Innotech’s eMarketing Track

As the founder of a national technology training company, I was definitely looking forward to attending Austin’s Innotech conference last week. Since relocating the company from Dallas to Austin this summer, the name ‘Innotech’ was mentioned to me at least once a week as a premier event to interact with leaders who are driving the IT industry in Central Texas. I chose to attend the eMarketing Summit because I was specifically interested in social media, which proved to be an excellent decision. After reviewing my notes, here are my personal top five, very manageable and high impact follow up items:

Action #1: Find Hoover’s D&B landing page used as the example in the “Lessons Learned from Five Internet Marketing Experts”

One of the five panelists in this session, Peter Poulin, Executive Vice President of Marketing at Hoover’s Inc. shared with the audience the various iterations of their strategy as they tested design elements, layouts and calls to action on their site. One interesting discovery was that there was a higher conversion rate when they used an image of a blonde woman versus a brunette. It was easy to tell that this stirred up some debate at the various tables because it received a lot of buzz on Twitter. It certainly gives new meaning to “blondes have more fun.”

I intend to find the example landing page he used during his presentation to see the design they ultimately settled on. If I can get a copy of the presentation, that would be a bonus!

Action #2: Download Brian Masey’s presentation “Killing Brad Pitt: Why Buyers Fail to Take Action on Your Web site”

Brian Masey with Conversion Sciences, delivered one of my favorite presentations of the day focusing on the various personas that come to your site. He categorized four different types of buyers:

  • Competitive (highly logical but quick to make decisions) – respond well to Ratings, Guarantees, Newness, Brand, Appeal to Others
  • Methodical (also highly logical but take time to make decisions) – respond to Case Studies, Process, Samples, Standards, Competing Solutions
  • Spontaneous (highly emotional and quick to make decisions) – respond to Color, Ease-of-use, Size, Price, Return Policy, Delivery, Discounts
  • Humanist (also highly emotional but take time to make decisions) – respond to Testimonials, Credibility, Company, Reviews, Trustworthiness

A copy of his presentation can be found on Slideshare and I will spend more time gleaning information from it.

Action #3: Another action for us from Brian Masey’s ‘Killing Brad Pitt’ presentation is to incorporate additional calls to action on our site. Here are some examples he gave:

  • Add to cart
  • Checkout
  • Subscribe
  • Trial signup
  • Sample request
  • Contact form
  • Download
  • Tell a friend
  • Read an article
  • View the video

I’d like to incorporate four to five of these appropriately throughout our site.

Action #4: Implement landing pages for our events and partner pages.

At the end of their presentations, a handful of the speakers provided links to a specific landing page on their sits. I actually viewed every single one of them and I think I even signed up for anything and everything on their sites, which made me instantly aware of the effectiveness of these pages. This is exactly what I want visitors to our site to do. What a valuable lesson. Check out a couple of examples:

We’ve already started in this and we’re launching personalized landing pages for key partners this week.

Action #5: Devote 15 minutes, 3 times a day to social media such as Twitter, FaceBook and LinkedIn and use the tools to streamline and automate what I can.

From his presentation “Top 10 Extreme Social Media Promotion Hacks”, Giovanni Gallucci the, ‘Social Media Ninja’ suggested not 10 but 40 social media tips including using the following tools to streamline your social media activities:

  • Twitterfeed
  • Tweetadder
  • Twitter Mutality (Google it)

Although we have Twitter and Facebook pages, I am formalizing social media activities as part of my daily schedule and marketing routine.

For EXTRA CREDIT and a chance to be inspired to build social media policies for our company, download and review Intel’s Social Media Guidelines.

Bryan G. Rhoads, Sr. Digital Strategist, Intel Social Media Center of Excellence delivered “Tying it all together: integrating your business and brand into social conversations” about his experience being part of the team that developed, and continues to develop, a social media strategy at Intel. The Social Media Center they created is remarkable but with me being a trainer, I was most excited about the educational programs they built to provide “Digital IQ” training for their employees. Very impressive.

Overall, this was a day well spent at Innotech’s eMarketing Summit. There was a great deal of valuable and actionable information presented, which made it clearer than ever that you should have your website working for you. It is absolutely critical that it not only provide information, it should be optimized to draw traffic, capture information and when possible bring customers or clients into the sales process. Then it makes sense to use social media to extend the reach and capabilities of the site.

Looking forward to next year and of course, seeing the results of what I learned from last week.

Vickie S. Evans is a former New York personal assistant turned applications instructor with twelve years of classroom training experience and six years experience working as a professional assistant. She is a Microsoft Certified Trainer and holds two additional certifications as a Microsoft Office Specialist Master Instructor (Office 2003) and Microsoft Certified Application Specialist (Office 2007). Through her company RedCape, Vickie and her staff provide superhero professionals with just-in-time, desk side technology coaching and solutions through virtual collaboration.

All opinions expressed in guest blog postings are those of the specific post’s author, and may or may not reflect those of Brian Combs or ionadas local.