5 Digital Marketing Takeaways from Digital Summit Dallas

Last week the Zilker Media Digital Marketing team attended the Digital Summit in Dallas. The intensive summit consisted of two days of sessions that featured some of our nation’s top digital marketers highlighting topics that ranged from paid advertising, Instagram Stories marketing, the power of storytelling and a look inside the Southwest Airlines social listening war room.


Here we break down our top five takeaways from the week:

1. The Stories Format

Instagram Stories and Snapchat Stories are not a new craze but instead a digital marketing phenomenon that is taking the world by storm. Laura E. Wilson, Senior Director of Social Media at Georgetown University, focused on how their university implemented a micro-storytelling strategy by utilizing Instagram Stories and Snapchat Stories. One important takeaway from Laura’s presentation is that Stories were developed specifically for mobile and with nearly 91 percent of social media traffic on mobile (Marketing Profs Oct. 30, 2017) this is a resource you want to utilize. Another great point Laura touched on during her presentation was the power of influencer marketing. The first person narrative is critical to the Stories format so don’t be scared to enlist someone to take over your story for the day.

2. Email Marketing

As you know from a recent blog post from our Digital Marketing Director Paige Velasquez, email marketing is not dead. Jamie Bradley, Content Marketing Manager for the email platform Emma, discussed the continued value of email marketing. In fact 47 percent claim that email marketing still generates the most ROI for their organizations. Targeted emails have also resulted in a huge success rate by tailoring design and messaging to a segmented part of an audience resulting in a 58 percent average email marketing revenue generated by segmented and targeted emails. Lastly, design matters! Create a thoughtful design that enhances the user experiences and is optimized for all devices.


3. Facebook Advertising

Facebook Advertising can be a difficult task to undertake but when used correctly can have some of the greatest rewards. As you most likely know by now, Facebook is a pay-to-play channel. The days of high engagement and significant reach on organic content are long behind us so now as digital marketers we must evolve to the platform. Facebook ad guru Susan Wenograd said we need to be realistic about what our money is getting us. Don’t overpay for conversion campaigns when all you are accomplishing is awareness and consideration! Susan also suggested that engagement retargeting and campaign types can help warm leads through your marketing funnel. Something to consider when developing warm audience is to use Facebook opt-in options to create warm/mid-funnel audiences.

4. Video

Video is overtaking social media. 50 percent of all mobile traffic is from streaming video and that number is expected to quickly increase says Caitlin Angeloff, who is in charge of Global Social Strategy & Operations at DocuSign. Caitlin also shared that 40 percent of total video watch time comes from Facebook shares and to keep this number in mind when developing your digital strategies. Another trend we see developing is video remartargeting. Michelle StinsonRoss shared that Facebook’s latest update allows you to retarget your content to users who spent time watching your videos on Facebook and Instagram. You even have the ability to target based on the amount of time a user may have watched the video with a breakdown that ranges from 3 seconds to 95 percent of your video. Michelle informed us that over 100 million of hours of video are watched daily on Facebook…a stat to remember when you ask yourself if video is worth adding to your digital strategy.

5. Storytelling

Storytelling was a common theme from the Digital Summit. Several sessions and keynotes highlighted the value and importance in providing a storytelling narrative to our social media because consumers want a relationship with you and your brand. They want a reason to come back to your content. Patron CMO Lee Applbaum discussed the importance of using stories to educate their audience on their product, provide engaging and interactive content where users can learnt to make their own cocktails and create opportunities to interact with the brand on a personal level. Clearly their method works since Patron has never paid for an endorsement! Don’t be afraid to humanize your brand. Your audience will thank you with engagement in the long run.

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