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Last week, I spent four days in Boston attending Hubspot?s annual conference-
#INBOUND16. After such an empowering experience, I can?t help but feel as though
I?ve been to a marketing buffet and it will take another four days to fully digest the
information that I?ve been given. I stayed up late each night and attended plenty of
post-conference events so I could come up with ideas that feed into my vision for
The Hive Marketing for my clients and for myself.
These ideas have taken shape and now it?s time for strategy, execution and tactics.

Part of the execution is writing about this experience so that I can deliver
actionable items to you, my dear readers, and continue to be your resource for all
things internet marketing.

Below are my takeaways from the conference with some important information that
I?ve added just for you. Remember those action items I told you about?
I?ve also included some in this post that you can do today.

If you don?t have a pen, grab one now and write down these tips:

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1.?Video and Social Go Together ? In case you missed it, video and social media got married. And Facebook Live is the product of their blessed union. In 2017, 50 percent of content should be video. See my previous posts about how to get started in video marketing, why it?s important and how to plan for video marketing in 2017.

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2.?Live in your Social Media ? To make sure your social media packs a big punch you want to use it to use your ads to your advantage. Make sure you visit your communities and groups to ensure you maintain contact with your clients. Continue to think about ways you can answer those questions that come up again and again. Would it be useful to create a forum for clients/users/customers to answer each other?s questions and connect with one another?

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3.?Accelerate Content with Upgrades and Amplification ? You always want to bring your blog current by taking your content to the next level. Take part in upgrades and makes sure to offer items that amplify your service. If you need to get your blog on the right track, check out more about rebranding your site. You?ll also want to check out beacon.com which offers amazing ways to keep your followers around for the long haul.

If you really want to increase blog traffic, I’ve got 10 fast tips to make it happen. ?Download your FREE copy of my “10 Ways to Increase Blog Traffic”.Blog_Checklist-1.jpg

4. Automate the Buying Process. By understanding your client?s needs, you?ll be able to decide the best way to setup your website software for handling the buying process. Marketing automation also allows you to take care of emails, marketing campaigns and even run your social media accounts. If you?re interested in paying per lead, one of Facebook?s new features, called FormLeads, is an inexpensive way to do just that.

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So what does all of this mean for the way we?ve done business in the past? Cold calling is now officially dead. Instead, focus on your website because it really is your virtual storefront and it really is open 24/7. Don?t worry; the internet won?t really swallow us all up whole. You?ll still need your sales team to supplement by answering questions, providing customer services, etc. And though cold calling has passed, your email is still alive and one of the best ways to communicate with your customer base. In the big arena, context is still king. When you send an email, the message inside should be carefully considered. New users should receive a special message differing from existing customers. It all goes back to knowing your audience and having the symptoms in place to provide for them.

Still wondering about those actions that I promised? Here are some tried and true ways to take your business to the next level. Start implementing these today:

  • Provide value before charging. We should always be working to give our customers value rather than extracting value. There are many ways to do this. Try providing blog posts that give information to customers by providing a trial option, a try before you buy if you will, Dropbox, Casper mattresses, and RoadRunner sports have the option to try before committing. Is this something that you can apply to your business?
  • Get the word out. Use referral marketing and word of mouth referrals from existing customers to build the loyalty of your brand. (Find out more about branding your business.) You can offer a referral program on customer success or align incentives with customers. Remember when they do better, you do better.
  • Recurring revenue model. Think of ways you can expand your website to offer revenue producing services, like software services or evergreen content, that ultimately allow you to receive steady income while making sure you don?t neglect the wants and needs of your customers. A win-win for all involved.

The insights I gained at the 2016 Conference are limitless and I am so happy to share this information with you. If you?re ready to take the Inbound Marketing world by storm, I?m here to help.

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