If you’re anything like us, we wait for CTA Conference all year. As always, the anticipation was worth the wait. Unbounce strives to keep the marketing community on top of trends for the coming year as well as discussing insightful ways to improve SEO, PPC, and content marketing. The theme of this conference was Marketing IQ.
CTA Conference 2019 discussed what the organizers and speakers felt were the six core elements of Marketing IQ:
Most years, conferences like these focus on data and technique alone, but at the heart of this conference, there was a clear takeaway. It was that people are important to everything we do, so we should see more than a persona. We should be focused on real human beings with feelings, emotions, experiences, and a myriad of qualities that make them unique.
What I Learned from CTA Conference 2019
As speakers repeatedly challenged attendees to be a high IQ marketer, a picture formed about what that really was. It was someone who seeks and uses data regularly to develop campaigns, experiences, and assets that attract, touch, and excite people.
With 20 speakers plus sponsors and Unbounce staff presenting a wealth of information, there was plenty to learn over just two days. If I gave you the highlights of every speaker, we’d probably be here a while, so let’s go with the big picture.
Will the Real People Please Stand Up?
If you’re creating advertising that you personally find appealing, then you’re probably doing it wrong, unless you are also a part of the target audience. You should look at your campaigns through the lens of your best customer, not your creative team.
Use surveys, heatmaps, Google Analytics, and even Amazon reviews to collect data about real people. Gathering real-world data will help you move past what you think to what you can confidently know.
The “See Me” Approach
Have you ever walked away from a brand or product because you just didn’t see yourself in their ads or their product images? Maybe it was a little more subtle than that. As you researched brands, have you ever felt like, “hey, they really know me?”
We all like to fit in, and we gravitate towards products and brands that appeal to our sense of belonging. Diversity and inclusion will help you succeed because, in the real world, people don’t fit into neat little boxes. When we, as marketers, can help people see themselves, we win more customers.
Artificial Intelligence Isn’t the Enemy
After movies like I, Robot, and TV shows like Westworld, it’s hard not to be at least a little bit suspicious of AI. It’s not really like that, though. It’s not coming to take your job or your world. It can, however, help you gather and crunch data. It can enhance what you do and might even be able to help generate the perfect images (someday).
Think of artificial intelligence as something that will aid your creativity rather than supplement it. Plus, it can assist you with difficult tasks like creating “photography” where you’d normally need to use stock photos.
Emotion, Design, and Empathy
Your design, your copy, and your imagery should invoke feelings and cause people to react. They should feel things when they interact with our campaigns. When we understand and properly use emotional triggers, people are more likely to convert.
We should focus on empathetic design, meaning we take care to find the places and pages where people get stuck. We need to get outside of our box and look at more than just heatmaps. We need to investigate what people are inputting in our site search because they can’t find it through our navigation or webpages. We need to find where people leave the site. Using our tools in more intelligent ways will help us discover where people struggle and fix it.
Process is Everything
You are only as good as your process. Creating a framework for everything you do will speed up your production and improve your output. While it can feel limiting at first, it will be freeing and boost your work quality too.
Social Proof Isn’t Just a Stupid Testimonial
Think that testimonial on your page is great? What happened to the face that goes with it? Do you have a name? Making the testimonial look like it came from a real person rather than your imagination is essential.
Don’t have testimonials? It’s okay. Badges, reviews, ratings, and photos are compelling too. Social proof comes in many ways. It doesn’t even need to be digital. You can take paper feedback surveys and pull the appropriate content. Learn to use what you have.
Chatbot Isn’t a Curse Word
Ok, so you know what Larry Kim likes as much as unicorns? Chatbots. They are no longer annoying little robots that ineffectively communicate with request a chat. Rather, they are complex tools that can be used to personalize an experience and win the sale. Companies like MobileMonkey are revolutionizing the way you can do business on platforms like Facebook because they can help you create a personalized experience that doesn’t feel robotic.
Lesson learned? We should be upping our Facebook game with chatbots because they offer a much better ROAS than traditional marketing alone.
Call To Action Conference 2019 - Wrapping Things Up
I hope I covered all of the best and brightest ideas that came from all of the phenomenal speakers at CTA Conference 2019. I probably missed some things too. What can I say, it’s hard to summarize brilliance. I definitely can’t wait until next year!