Some notes on SummitUp

blue-refreshIt was great to attend this year’s SummitUp conference with fellow writers Sam Enslen and Mary Ann Chang.
I’d heard one of the presenters before, and I recently worked with another on a web copywriting project. So I was surprised at how many ideas the conference gave me to chew on.
Here are just a few.
Facts, not fanfare
I think we’re finally figuring out how to use social media. As recently as a year ago, everyone seemed to be shouting, “Don’t ignore social media,” or “Look how many millions of users are on Twitter!” But no one could tell us exactly what we should be doing—or what we might get out of it.
In contrast, this year, Kelly Malone from Fahlgren Mortine showed us a great case study involving Elmer’s. She articulated how the Facebook-based campaign worked and exactly what its results were. What she described wasn’t that different from what we used to do B.I. (before the Internet) with direct mail marketing: reaching out to a highly targeted audience with an extremely relevant offer. The goal? Drive sales and create customers-for-life—what we now refer to as “brand advocates.”
Extreme ROI
The striking thing is that with today’s technology, the audience targeting can be focused in the extreme. And it’s so much less costly than buying mailing lists.
Kendra Ramirez with Ascendum Solutions described a similar, highly targeted campaign involving LinkedIn. For one of her clients, she created a LinkedIn ad that went to six executives—and only six executives—who fit the target profile. Out of the six ads, the firm got one new customer.
In direct marketing terms, that’s a gigantic return.
What’s it gonna cost me?
Crown Partners’ Kyle Priest gave what was, to me, the most enlightening presentation. Kyle’s point? It’s not the technology you need to conquer as much as understanding what motivates—deeply motivates—your customer. Kyle refers to this as their “eDNA.”
That’s not new. What’s new is the fact that there are so many more channels through which to engage that customer. And fragmentation is daunting. With that in mind, I thought the audience member who asked Kelly, “How many people are on the Elmer’s Tweet team, and how many on the Elmer’s blog team?” started to get to the heart of the matter for many people.
They know that social media is important. They have some ideas of what it can do. The next step? They need to know what resources they’re going to have to invest to make it work. Without knowing that, social media can seem like an ocean of opportunity that can’t be plumbed.
Jill Davis is a copywriter with extensive experience in marketing, branding, and retail sales.

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