Lessons learned from the Internet Summit conference

Lessons learned from the Internet Summit conference header image

Last week I was lucky enough to attend the 2016 Internet Summit conference in Raleigh, NC. It was two full days of panels, sessions, and talks with digital marketers representing companies of all sizes, who came together to share their expertise with others in the industry.

Even if you weren’t at the conference, you can still learn from the event and apply some of these strategies to your own marketing tactics. Here’s a roundup of our top lessons learned from the event.

Use plain language

You may have become so used to the jargon you use in your industry that you forget that not everyone has the same expertise you do. Using simple, accessible language that is understood by everyone can help you appeal to customers and make your company seem more approachable.

This is a good reminder for us at Name.com since we deal with a lot of lingo that others may not be familiar with. Not everyone is going to know what we’re talking about when we go on and on about name servers and DNS records, so it’s our job to explain them in a way that makes sense to everyone. By keeping our content simple, and assuming that not everyone understands domain industry jargon, we can make our content more accessible for our audience.

Don’t be afraid to use humor, but know where to draw the line

From the Old Spice Guy to Kmart’s “Ship my pants” promotion, brands have attracted an incredible amount of attention simply by injecting humor into their advertisements—and you can do the same. But first, you and your company should decide what type of humor best suits you brand and your audience.

Understanding who your customer base is and what they find funny is important. You might think witty chemistry jokes and the bomb dot com, but if your demographic is 6-8 year olds who like unicorns, that type of humor might not be the best fit for your company.

Try experiential marketing

Remember when Red Bull broke world records with the highest recorded space jump? Or when the revamp of the movie Carrie gained attention with this elaborate coffee shop prank? That’s a tactic called experiential marketing, and you can use it yourself to promote your own business.

Admittedly, these examples involved quite the wad of cash that not every business will have access to, but there are still ways you can use an experience to promote your brand. Host an open house at your office, put together a community event, or host your own hackathon.

Know your platforms

Unfortunately, it’s not enough to have a website and call it a day. Oh no—you also need to have four social media accounts, create custom videos, and cross promote your content, all while keeping it interesting and relevant.

But if you understand these platforms, along with their strengths and weaknesses, they can be powerful tools for growing your customer base. YouTube is the second largest search engine on the internet. Medium posts have a tendency to be shared more often than in-house blog posts, and don’t count as duplicate content. Even though not all social media platforms will complement the content that your business does best, it’s worth investigating your best-performing content to figure out how it can work harder for you.