The Online Marketing Summit in San Diego kicked off Tuesday with OMS founder Aaron Kahlow interviewing social-media heavyweights Federated Media founder John Battelle and Marketing Sherpa founder Anne Holland. Anne was a surprise guest, making her first public appearance since 2006. The conversation was so interesting that I’ve paraphrased (you could even say “SmartBriefed”) the key points from their discussion.
What are the foundations of success in the businesses you’ve started and how can they apply to all businesses?
AH: You can do so much with online surveys to learn about people’s pain points. Then, position products to alleviate people’s pain. The key is to look at where your customers are.
JB: A brand is what one of you says to another one of you about a company. Find, hire and encourage employees who are passionate about joining that conversation.
How do you address the somewhat-loaded conversation about advertising and social media?
JB: First, it’s important to remember that advertisers are people, too. The general rule to follow is to go where human passion is, always with the same approach: Listen, understand the social morays of the conversation and figure out how to add value. Do advertising in a way that respects the community. Bring in marketers that the audience might actually get something from.
AH: Not only is it understood that advertising is part of the deal online, but for a lot of publications, events and products, advertising is part of the value that the product brings.
When you think about your business space in 2011, what are the things you’re keeping an eye on – that can translate to everyone here?
AH: Mobile, even if your company is B2B. It is not just the focus of hip, cool, young consumer brands. People don’t look at computers any more.
JB: Interface and platform are the two things I’m most obsessed with now. I’m focused on platforms that are open that allow anyone to be on and to benefit from them. I continue to be fascinated with the anthropological nature of how we interact with machines. Apps and augmented reality will change how we interact with each other. It’s important to keep that in mind when you’re developing new products, services and businesses.
Marketers’ Takeaway from Anne Holland
Getting people to opt in to receive e-mail from your company is a great way to cultivate strong relationships. If you’re doing any kind of e-mail opt-in on a Web site, make sure the welcome message you send them is solid. This message gets the highest open rate out of any email you’ll ever send to them. To double and triple the value of your newly established relationship, consider including:
- Top 5 articles
- Simple personalization that references the publisher in the first sentence (e.g. Thank you for signing up @boing boing for e-mail offers).
Image credit, jgroup, via iStock