It's hard to believe that two weeks has passed since Inbound 2013 came to a close. We are lucky enough to be local to the event and the four very full days at the Hynes Convention Center were a whirlwind of knowledge, content, networking, thought-sharing, content, insight...and you guessed it, more content.
I'm sure that everyone who attended will have different personal highlights of the event. For me, some of the key takeaways came from the wisdom and inspiring words of the keynote speakers. As with any successful conference keynotes, many of the messages that came through loud and clear can be applied to more than just marketing and business. So, what better way to add to our own content than to build off of some of my favorite quotes of the week?
If you say failure is not an option, you are also saying success is not an option. - Seth Godin
As marketers, the landscape of our business has never been more dramatically and consistently changing as it is right now. Solutions that were tried and true are no longer necessarily so, and we find ourselves at the edge of a new marketing world that lies more in the hands of our customers than ever before. While this may fill some businesses with dread and fear, the businesses that will succeed are those that will be willing to take a chance, push the envelope and explode outside of the existing marketing box. Some of the new ideas may not work as well as we hope - but without trying and being willing to fail, we will never learn which are the ideas that drive the most success.
Live your life as if the world is rigged in your favor - Arianna Huffington
This line was my favorite of the week, and I have to admit that I've used it in conversations multiple times a day since then - both in my professional and personal life. I'm pretty sure that people are going to start finishing it for me as soon as I can say "Live". But it applies to everything! Every day we will face new marketing challenges - a new client kick-off, a blog post we need to write, a media plan that needs to be created yesterday - and think of the freedom that believing that success is imminent gives us in that process. In the world of testing, testing and more testing, moving forward like we will succeed (even though we know that it's inevitable that some ideas will flop) may be just the edge that will drive us toward standing out amidst the clutter.
If you don’t know where you are in the present, it’s hard to take quality steps toward the future. - Nate Silver
Nate may have said it best, but this message came through loud and clear in a number of the sessions that I was able to attend. What are we best at? Who are our ideal customers? What do they need? What are their concerns? What would delight them? By now we understand that developing engaging content and valuable solutions are key drivers to success. But if we don't know who we are or who we are speaking to - and most importantly what people want to hear from us - how will we determine if the content is engaging or what problems our customers are trying to solve? While we all want to move ahead, taking the time to step back and figure out where we and our target audience are now is a critical first step.