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Reflections from the Content2Conversion Conference

by Justin Knarr

Last week, I attended the Content2Conversion conference in NYC. As far as events go, this one was pretty sweet. One day. In-your-face. They took the “If you aren’t doing this, you will lose” approach, which I love because I relate to it as well.

There were few mentions of search talk at the conference, which surprised me. Within the first 5 minutes, there was a slide up on the screen that stated in big, bold text that 81 percent of buyers perform a Google search as the first step in the buying process. During the following 8 hours and 25 minutes of the conference, search was ignored. Never mentioned again. I mean, come on. Who cares if you have killer content if no one can find it?

You need to make sure that your on- and off-page efforts create search engine results. Yes, I understand that Google doesn’t want you to over-optimize websites (and therefore content. Hi, Panda! So good to see you.) Yes, I understand that Google wants to focus on giving the user the best possible experience, but in order to give the greatest experience, or any experience for that matter, you have to be found. Traffic needs to be pushed to your site. And you can’t have traffic if you don’t rank.

One of the key takeaways revolved around the fact that organizations stumble before they get out of the gate in terms of marketing/sales campaigns because they focus their message, time and content efforts on themselves. This isn’t surprising since again, people love to talk about their achievements. We know this. Moms show us pictures of their kids. High school administrators put trophies in the case for everyone to see. I could go on and on, but you get it. So as marketers and salespeople, we need to show our prospects that we will prioritize their success. We cannot do this by showing our potential clients pictures of our kids and walking them by our trophies.

What we need to focus on in both sales and marketing is the fact that people really only care about what other people are saying about them. I can’t tell you exactly who mentioned this yesterday during their presentation, but I heard the term “Conversation Economy.” This intrigued me.

People talk. People talk about everything. Good and bad. People are a social species, and they want to interact. People buy things based on what other people are saying. So let the people talk. Thank you, Social.

Now, we need them to talk about us. But we can’t talk to them about us. We learned this 3 paragraphs ago. So, how do we get people to talk to other people about us? We’d really like to get them to say good things about us. Actually, we’d really just like them to not say bad stuff about us. But we need to get them talking.

Seems pretty simple. Just ask people to talk about us. Right? Good luck.

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