The Best of Content & Commerce Summit 2017: 104 Insights, Actionable Ecommerce Strategies, & Digital Media Content

It’s going on right now. The question to ask yourself is: Are you ready for it?

It’s a changing of the guard and it will play a major role in digital advertising…

This was the main focus of Ryan Deiss‘ opening keynote of Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

Read on to learn…

  • How to prepare for this changing of the guard and other words of wisdom from Ryan’s opening keynote
  • What’s working now in digital commerce and publishing
  • The highlights, insights, and strategies from three days of Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Click here to go to:

You’re about to get the best of Content & Commerce Summit (besides being there, of course 😉 )!

Content & Commerce Summit Day 1:

Putting It All Together (Behind the Scenes of Content & Commerce Summit 2017)

It takes a lot of time.

We no sooner wrapped up last year’s Content & Commerce Summit then we started planning for 2017!

In the weeks leading up to the Summit, we packed up an 18-wheeler with everything we’d need, from couches to AV equipment.

Loading up the truck to send all the Content & Commerce Summit equipment to L.A.

And when it arrived in L.A. from Austin, Texas, we got to work putting tables together and prepping event bags for attendees and speakers…

Setting up tables for Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Prepping Content & Commerce Summit event bags

…getting sponsor booths set up…

Setting up sponsor booths at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Setting up sponsor booths at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…ensuring everything was in its proper place and that the ballrooms were ready for our attendees and speakers…

Riding the escalators and getting the DigtialMarketer gears to their homes as we set up Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Setting up the ballrooms at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…so it ultimately looks like this on opening day…

The stage in the DigitalMarketer ballroom at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

During setup, with the Emmy Awards going on next door, we kept our eyes peeled for our favorite TV stars (we’re big Game of Thrones fans at the office). Here’s our Justin Rondeau posing with the Emmy statue…

Justin Rondeau posing with the Emmy Statue at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

With the day before the Summit wrapping up, we threw a Welcome Reception for Content & Commerce Summit attendees. The mixer, presented by Quality Score, was complete with a taco bar and Connect Four!

Connect 4 at the Welcome Reception for Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Taco bar at the Content & Commerce 2017 Welcome Reception

I’m So Excited!

Attendees just can’t hide it. There’s an undeniable energy in the air, and that anticipation and excitement is contagious.

Tweet from C&C attendee

Instagram update from C&C attendee

C&C app update from C&C attendee

You can see it as people run into old friends and connect with new ones. As they go through registration and are handed their name badge and Content & Commerce Summit event bag. People are pumped!

Before the event officially kicked off, we checked in with Content & Commerce Summit attendees. Here’s what they were looking forward to most…

Exclusive Interview with Ryan Deiss

Before DigtialMarketer’s Co-Founder and CEO, Ryan Deiss, delivered his opening keynote presentation, Christine Haas, DigitalMarketer’s Director of Communications, exclusively interviewed him backstage.

Watch the video below to get a look behind the curtain and to learn Ryan’s thoughts before he kicks off Content & Commerce Summit and unpacks what’s working now in digital commerce and publishing:

The Challenge on the Horizon

When you expect changes in your business, you’re able to see challenges on the horizon.

And as the opening Content & Commerce Summit video reminded the audience, the challenge on the horizon is here. With Amazon buying Whole Foods and other big box stores, like Sears, on shaky ground, the digital landscape is changing… fast!

That’s why you’re here. So you can learn what changes and challenges are coming.

Watch the full opening video here:

Are You Ready for the Changing of the Guard?

This changing of the guard is creating a rare window of opportunity that we’re unlikely to see again in our lifetime.

That’s what Ryan told attendees during his opening keynote.

And this change is being driven by Amazon.

While this may be terrifying, it’s going to be okay, Ryan assured the audience. You have a reason to exist.

What you learn during Ryan’s keynote and Content & Commerce Summit as a whole will help you deal with this change.

It’s important to remember that Amazon is not the enemy.

"Amazon is not the enemy." Ryan Deiss during his opening keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

But they are the standard. Amazon is setting the bar that everyone must meet.

How can you compete and win in the “Age of Amazon”?

Love your customer. While that may sound like a load of fluff, stay with me here.

Make no mistake, Amazon is focusing on their customer. It’s part of their business model…

"The most important single thing is to focus obsessively on the customer. Our goal is to be earth's most customer-centric company." ~Jeff Bezos, CEO & President of Amazon

And they’re doing that by making it easy for the customer. Amazon wants to make it as easy as possible for the customer to buy and then return to buy again.

But Ryan argued that making it “easy” for the customer isn’t customer-centric.

So, how do you love your customer more than Amazon?

Talk to your customer directly using content and commerce. Content and commerce is the tactic you will use to show your customers that you care about them more than Amazon does.

We’ve identified that there are three stages to this content and commerce journey.

Three stages of content and commerce: 1. Content-Driven Commerce 2. Curated Commerce 3. Community-Driven Commerce

Each stage builds upon the next. Each stage deepens the relationship with your customer.

What are some other key takeaways from Ryan’s keynote? Well…

  • “In the future, the words ‘brand’ and ‘community’ will be interchangeable. And no one will be able to claim they have a brand unless they have a community to go with it.”

“In the future, the words 'brand' and 'community' will be interchangeable. And no one will be able to claim they have a brand unless they have a community to go with it.” ~Ryan Deiss

  • “If you can tell a person a story, you can capture their attention. If you can help them tell a new story about themselves, you’ll capture their hearts.”

"If you can tell a person a story, you can capture their attention. If you can help them tell a new story about themselves, you'll capture their hearts." ~Ryan Deiss

  • Tell your customers where you stand, even if you think they may not like you for it. Like clothing store Chubbies does here…

What clothing store Chubbies believes

There were so many great takeaways from Ryan’s keynote. We just had to share it with you! You can watch Ryan’s entire keynote here:

What else happened on Day 1 of #CCS2017? Let’s see…

(NOTE: Love Content & Commerce Summit? Then you should join us for our next event: Traffic & Conversion Summit! Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and SAVE 50% with Early Bird Pricing. But hurry! The Early Bird promotion is for a limited time. Learn more here.)
Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and save 50% with Early Bird Pricing!

Welcome to the Mobile Movement

There’s no denying the importance of email. But, when it comes to reaching your customers, email is also super crowded and competitive.

It doesn’t matter how good your subject line is when your message isn’t even being seen, Oli Billson told the audience. The Founder and CEO of Oliver Billson Marketing went on to say…

Most people figure out how they will generate new leads instead of worrying about how they will sell. The result? Half built bridges. ~Oliver Billson Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

So, how do we open up channels of communication we’re going to need in a sales process to complete these bridges?

In his presentation, Proven “Dynamic Response” Mobile Marketing Campaigns to Accelerate Sales, Generate More Leads, and Increase Engagement, Oli told the audience to turn to the device in their pockets and purses.

The new opportunity: Connect with the device in your prospects' pockets. ~Oliver Billson Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

Mobile devices offer marketers a huge opportunity to reach their customers and generate sales because people find text messages less intimidating.

To fully leverage the power of the mobile marketing to accelerate your sales process, there are three “recipes” you need to employ. They are…

Goal 1: Get their phone number. Goal 2: Get into their phone. Goal 3: Start the conversation. ~Oliver Billson Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

As Oli went on to say…

People don't want to wait for their information. Skip the email — just text them. ~Oli Billson

Interview with Hint Water’s Founder & CEO, Kara Goldin

A very senior exec at one of the largest soda companies in the world told her that her idea wouldn’t work. She was told that they would be roadkill within months.

But that didn’t stop Kara Goldin, Founder and CEO of Hint Water®, who went on to launch the award-winning brand in 2005.

Flavored only with natural fruit, Hint® produces a leading flavored water with no sweeteners and nothing artificial. And the company is thriving.

Before taking the Content & Commerce Summit stage, Kara tweeted…

Kara tweets her excitement before her keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

The feeling is mutual! 🙂

Kara sat down with Roland Frasier to give the insights and strategies that helped her launch Hint®.

Roland Frasier (left) and Kara Goldin (right) sit down at Content & Commerce Summit 2017 to talk about the founding of Hint.

Sweetie, Americans love sweets. Your product will never be anything,” that was one take on Hint® when Kara started pitching it. But Kara didn’t hear any of the criticism.

She told the audience:

Tweet on Kara Goldin's presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017: "Look at naysayers as gifts of information."

Because it boils down to finding if you’re doing something and seeing if you’re getting traction with your consumers and solving their problems.

Kara went on to say to figure out your fears and challenge them…

"Don't be afraid to build a plane while you're flying it." ~Kara Goldin

When building her flavored water brand and wellness company, she said the three most important relationships were with…

  • The Customer: It’s important to remember you’re not only selling stuff but also solving the problem for your consumers. Kara said it’s important to have a dialogue — really hear what customers are saying about how your brand impacts their lives. The dialogue with the customer and ability to actually hear from them gets deeper as you build the relationship.
  • Her team: Those at Hint® don’t just agree with the brand’s beliefs — they live them. At Hint®, they don’t have people running around drinking Red Bull. Their team is filled with people who really want to be healthier and not just from a weight or health perspective.
  • Her husband: He helped co-found Hint® by trusting Kara’s vision and process and has been a cheerleader since her lightbulb moment sparked.

3 Steps to Consistent Facebook Ad ROI

They know Facebook ads.

The Dominate Web Media duo, Keith Krance and Ralph Burns, took to the stage to share how to use Facebook video ads to pre-frame viewers for the sale, no matter your industry.

And it only takes a few steps.

In The 3-Step Formula to 10X Your Facebook Ad Spend with Consistent ROI, Keith and Ralph said Step 1 is to stop the scroll.

Stop the person from scrolling through their Facebook feed and pay attention to your message. To do this, at the very beginning of your Facebook video ad, do one or a combination of the following:

  • Use motion
  • Literally say, “Stop,” in your opening line
  • Include text overlay
  • Have creative content that’s unique

Step 2 is called EDIE (educate, demonstrate, inform, entertain). During your video, make sure you…

  • Educate your audience
  • Demonstrate something to your audience
  • Inform your audience
  • Entertain your audience

(RELATED: Perpetual Traffic podcast Episode 67: The Proven 3-Step Formula to Transform Your Business with Video Ads [Part 1])

Include at least one EDIE tactic, or more if that makes sense, in each of your Facebook videos ads. This is a simple way to get your product message across in your video without sounding all “weird and salesy.”

“When you make content like this,” Dominate Web Media’s Founder, Keith, said about EDIE, “you’re getting to the heart of your customer. They think they are making a logical decision, but they are really justifying an emotional one.”

Keith Krance giving his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Step 3 is the call-to-action (CTA). Many marketers may wait till the end of their video to make their CTA. But if you want to compel people to make a purchase, consider including your CTA earlier.

Without being pitchy, include your CTA where it makes sense earlier in your video AND within the copy of your Facebook ad.

Ralph, Dominate Web Media’s Agency CEO, told the audience, “Even if they’ve only watched five minutes of a ten-minute video, give them an opportunity to buy. Make sure to include the CTA link in your post copy.”

Ralph Burns giving his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

How to Get Access to Millions of Ecommerce Testing at No Charge

DigitalMarketer’s Director of Marketing, Justin Rondeau reminded his audience that successful websites and online businesses need to do one thing and one thing only: Meet the visitor’s expectations.

What’s the easiest way to meet a visitor’s expectations? Take the most used trends by the world’s largest online retailers and apply them to your business!

In his 11 Conversion Lessons the World’s Largest Online Retailers Spent Millions to Learn, Justin shared his biggest takeaways from analyzing online retail giants.

For instance, users hate being forced to create an account at checkout. Making someone create an account to place an order is a surefire way to generate cart abandonment.

Multi-million dollar ecommerce stores, in most cases, give shoppers the ability to check out as a guest or “Express Checkout.”

Here’s how REI.com is handling the account creation process:

REI letting customers create an account or checkout as a guest

Crate & Barrel knows it too…

Crate & Barrel letting new customers checkout as a guest and returning customers use Express Checkout

In the words of Justin Rondeau, Always include guest checkout. Seriously.”

Then, if you offer free shipping (or provide it after a purchase reaches a certain value), advertise that fact early and often — from your home page to the checkout page. Free shipping is still king for ecommerce stores.

And when it comes to payment options, which there are a ton of, providing every payment option out there is actually counter-productive.

If you sell internationally, you should be using geo-targeting to make sure you are showing payment options that are best for that region. To visitors who would be MOST LIKELY to use it.

For example, Dutch visitors use the payment option IDEAL more than U.S. visitors. While a U.S. visitor could use IDEAL, it is more likely that they won’t.

So, before you list every payment option under the sun, look at the regions you do business in most. Then evaluate whether you are meeting their preferred needs with your current options.

(RELATED: 21 Lessons the World’s Largest Online Retailers Spent Millions to Learn [2nd Edition])

Are You Alienating Your Audience?

Many current consumer engagement strategies are intrusive — from ads on autoplay to ones that are impossible to close — many marketers are guilty of pushing their audience to the brink.

During his presentation, Craig Kapilow quoted a Kate Harrison article from Forbes:

“Today’s consumers don’t want brands aggressively pushing their way into social media feeds, whether on Facebook, through promoted Pins or Tweets, or paid-for Snapchat stories.”

The Senior Director of Integrated Marketing at Rue La La said it’s time to adapt. The ad industry and modern consumer engagement tactics need to evolve.

After all, on many platforms, there’s not much standing between the consumer and an ad-free experience…

From Hulu to YouTube, consumers can pay a small fee to be ad-free. ~Craig Kapilow Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

So, what do you do?

You have to engage with your consumers differently… or you risk alienating them.

In Content, Commerce, & Customer Acquisition: A New Path for Accelerating Subscription-Based Business, Craig offered these tips to improve your consumer engagement:

  • Leverage user-generated content (« especially on your website)
  • Video, video, and… more video
  • Be timely with your content
  • Have fun with your brand (« humor is a blessed thing)
  • Be relevant and personalize your content

How to Build Rapport with Your Audience

No matter your business or industry, we all have one thing in common (well, probably more than one, but definitely this one!)…

  1. We all want to connect with people and brands who are actually interested in our product/service

To connect with these people and brands, we need to build rapport. But, like most things in life, building rapport takes time. And where do you even start?

Start by following these nine steps from Joe Polish, Founder and President of Genius Network®.

Joe Polish during his Content & Commerce Summit 2017 presentation

During The 9-Step Magic Rapport Formula that Connects Your Brand with the People and Companies that Matter, Joe told the audience to follow these nine steps to connect your brand with your market:

  1. When you meet people, focus on how you can help them
  2. Be willing to invest time, money, and energy on relationships
  3. Be the person people will always answer the phone for
  4. Be grateful and valuable
  5. Treat people like you want to be treated
  6. Be fun and memorable… not boring and uptight
  7. Appreciate people… everyone wants to feel significant
  8. Give value on the spot
  9. Keep as close to “in person” as you can when dealing with people

1 = 3

Richard Lindner brought it during his presentation!

In Turning 1 Customer into 3: Strategies to Turn Happy Customers into Brand Evangelists and Promoters, the Co-Founder and President of DigitalMarketer spoke about how to leverage…

  • Email
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Social media
  • Your existing customer base

…to multiply your business.

Richard Lindner during his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

What were some of his biggest takeaways?

For starters, keep in mind that you will instantly lose ten customers if you ask a disgruntled one to review you. However, if you ask one happy customer to review you, you’ll gain three!

No matter what you sell, there are a couple of points where any customer is most excited about what they just purchased or what’s about to happen. So, make that as part of your strategy.

Encourage and enable a trigger with a series of positive rewards, slowly pushing them down the path of a customer to a promoter.

Finding Your Extra Gear

The final presentation of the night came from serial entrepreneur and endurance athlete Jesse Itzler.

Jesse Itzler during his keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

He said we all have an extra gear, yet so many of us don’t know it. During his keynote, he spoke about finding his extra gear and how to tap into a reserve tank we all have, but so few of us know how to access.

He quickly had the audience enraptured.

The attentive audience during Jesse Itzler's keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Jesse talked about finding purpose…

  • “When you can find a thing you love that brings good to the world, that’s how you know what to do.” 

He spoke about experience…

  • “Experience is over-rated. It takes too long.”
  • “For me, not having experience guaranteed that everything I did would have a different result because I was forced to do it differently!”

He told us to get over ourselves…

  • “The limitations we put on ourselves are self-imposed.”
  • “Once you get over the fear of being embarrassed, it’s the most liberating thing.” 

Jesse Itzler during his keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

He revealed how to push past our wall…

  • “When your brain says you’re done, you still have 40% left. The first time we experience pain, our body says, ‘stop.’ When we ignore the discomfort and tap into our reserve bank, that’s where the gold is.”

Finally, he closed by saying, “You didn’t come this far to only come this far.”

C&C Reception Presented by Maropost

Day 1 culminated in a networking party on the pool deck of the JW Marriot L.A. LIVE.

There was a live band…

Live band at the Maropost Reception at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

….a caricature artist…

Bryan Eisenberg's caricature from the Maropost Reception at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…tasty treats — from lobster mac n cheese to mini s’mores — and drink specials…

Drink specials at Maropost Reception at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…and people had a blast with the photo booth…

Guests posing at the photo booth at the Maropost Reception at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Guests posing at the photo booth at the Maropost Reception at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Of course, none of this would be possible without DeAnna Rogers and her amazing events team planning every detail of Content & Commerce Summit!

DeAnna Rogers posing with the Maropost ice sculpture at the Maropost Reception at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

(NOTE: Love Content & Commerce Summit? Then you should join us for our next event: Traffic & Conversion Summit! Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and SAVE 50% with Early Bird Pricing. But hurry! The Early Bird promotion is for a limited time. Learn more here.)
Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and save 50% with Early Bird Pricing!

Content & Commerce Summit Day 2:

Everyone’s Here for the Same Reason

Day 2 kicked off with an opening video that reminded the audience that we’re all here for the same reason — to grow our business.

But no matter how great our product or service is, without traffic, we won’t get a conversion. Which is why Day 2 of the Summit focused on traffic and conversion strategies that will get us more sales and grow our business.

Watch the two-minute opener here:

With four sessions devoted to Amazon, the ecommerce powerhouse was a main theme of the day. Roland Frasier kicked off the Amazon focus with Day 2’s opening keynote…

10X Your Sales by Year’s End

Roland Frasier, Principal Partner at DigitalMarketer, explained how to build winning marketing campaigns that generate leads and sales. And then how to scale those campaigns with paid traffic.

He used Amazon as an example throughout his presentation of The Bezos Blitz: How to Use Amazon, Mixed Reality, Auto-bots, & 7 Other Tools, Tactics, & Strategies to 10X Your Sales by the End of This Year.

Roland Frasier using Amazon as an example during his 2017 keynote at Content & Commerce Summit

Roland Frasier using Amazon as an example during his 2017 keynote at Content & Commerce Summit

And people couldn’t get enough of it.

Tweet praising Roland's presentation during Content & Commerce Summit 2017

One of his biggest takeaways?

"The product people want to buy from you the most is something they have already bought from you before." ~Roland Frasier

If they bought from you once, chances are, they’ll buy from you again! So, think about how you can sell your product again to people who have already bought from you.

He also went on to say to use FOMO (fear of missing out) or a similar tool to give visitors social proof. Do this and watch your sales soar!

The Principles and Practices of the World’s Most Dominant Companies

In the next keynote, legendary marketer, Bryan Eisenberg, revealed and demystified the principles and practices of world’s most dominant companies.

One of the dominant companies the Co-Founder of Buyer Legends focused on? You guessed it. Amazon.

Bryan Eisenberg during his keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

In The 4 Pillars of Amazon’s Success, Bryan talked about making Amazon’s four pillars work for you.

The four pillars of Amazon include:

  1. Customer Centricity
  2. Culture of Innovation
  3. Corporate Agility
  4. Continuous Optimization

One of the ways to make Amazon’s pillars work for you is to look at your actions. Afterall, your actions express your priorities.

Quoting Simon Sinek, Bryan said: “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe.”

"People don't buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe." ~Simon Sinek

Looking at your company’s actions will create customer loyalty because customers will stay loyal to a brand that they believe shares their values.

(RELATED: How to Run a Business Like Jeff Bezos)

Conversion Funnels That Work

Let’s talk funnels in a panel with Perry Belcher and Amanda Dobson of Native Commerce, Mitchell Savage of Battle Bridge Labs, and Walter Burch of Envoy Media.

The group would share three aha moments that led to a $3 million monthly lift:

  • The first aha is that multi-step forms are powerful and can help you ask the right question.
  • Next is the never-ending story (the form that never ends). It qualifies and educates your customers.
  • The final aha is that it’s a conversation! Your funnel is a conversation. So tweak your order form to make it more like a conversation between you and your customer.

Here are some other words of wisdom on funnels from the panel:

  • There is no rulebook. To understand why your funnels are working, you have to learn the rules over and over again.
  • Send unconverted leads to an authority, like Amazon, to help generate a conversion.
  • Perspective is everything. If you’re looking for just another tactic, then what you’re learning today won’t have anything to do with your success until years from now.
  • If you have something that works, high five! Get excited. But come back down and ask why it works.

(RELATED: How To Architect The Perfect Conversion Funnel For Your Business)

Using Facebook Groups to Increase Conversions, Reduce Churn, & Change People’s Lives

For businesses, how important is creating a community? In one word:

Essential.

At DigitalMarketer, through our research and our own personal experience, we’ve found that a successful community can improve the bottom line by…

  • Increasing conversions
  • Increasing ascension
  • Reducing customer churn

Not only that, a community has the chance to positively change people’s lives…
A community member of DigitalMarketer Engage posting about the value he gets from being a member of the community

But how do you get your community to this level? That was the focus of Suzi Nelson‘s How to Drive Leads, Sales, and Loyalty Using Facebook Groups presentation.

The Community Manager of DigitalMarketer offered several tips on building a successful community that impacts the bottom line and helps your customer.

For starters, know where your community fits within the Customer Value Journey.

This is the Customer Value Journey…

DigitalMarketer's Customer Value Journey

…and, more than likely, your community fits within the…

  • Awareness and Engagement stages
  • Excite and Ascend
  • Advocate and Promote stages

Next, it’s important to remember that your community isn’t a place to pitch because a community isn’t about you. It’s about your members and their relationship with each other. Your brand helps to facilitate this.

If you keep that in mind and do this right, you’ll build trust and loyalty with your community members. Not only do community members want to build trust with each other, they also want to build trust with your brand.

That’s where the magic happens because…

"Anything your community members have to say about your business is way more powerful than anything you have to say about it." ~Suzi Nelson

(RELATED: 6 Essential Strategies to Build a Thriving Customer Community)

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

The holiday season is upon us. Are you ready?

It’s time to do more than just stand out during the oversaturated holiday season a panel, with Richard Lindner of DigitalMarketer, Ezra Firestone of Smart Marketer, Tracey Wallace of BigCommerce, and moderated by Molly Pittman of DigitalMarketer, told the audience.

The panel poses for a quick picture before they take the stage. Left to right: Molly Pittman, Tracey Wallace, Ezra Firestone, and Richard Lindner.

The panel poses for a quick picture before they take the stage. Left to right: Molly Pittman, Tracey Wallace, Ezra Firestone, and Richard Lindner.

So, they shared fool-proof campaigns to crush Q4 and start 2018 on a high before your competition has even picked out their first pumpkin.

For a holiday campaign to succeed, Tracey advised that campaign content produced in October needs to be…

  1. Inspirational
  2. Seasonal
  3. Enlightening

Ezra would share a holiday campaign he calls “The Two-Step Dandy,” which is all about theming it up! Theme your ads, sales pages, and emails with the same branding.

The panel on stage at Content & Commerce Summit 2017. Left to right: Molly Pittman, Tracey Wallace, Ezra Firestone, and Richard Lindner.

The panel on stage at Content & Commerce Summit 2017. Left to right: Molly Pittman, Tracey Wallace, Ezra Firestone, and Richard Lindner.

Other highlights included…

  • “If you’re running a holiday campaign, you MUST retarget the people who come to the sales page and don’t buy.” ~Ezra Firestone
  • “Don’t consider it a done deal once someone has bought once,” said Ezra. Consider giving a bigger discount to previous buyers.
  • “If you’re not a personality brand, use this time to humanize your brand with your buyers and actually entertain them.” ~Richard Lindner

Where to Focus Your Content Marketing Efforts

Are you confused by what content is?

According to Russ Henneberry, Director of Editorial at DigitalMarketer, content is the “brick” that makes up the internet.

Content is everywhere. From a blog post to a YouTube video to a Facebook post to a sales page. That’s content.

Most content marketers would agree that good content marketing educates, entertains, or inspires.

But what if you want to make your content great and actually turn a profit?

You need to think about your content differently then.

In The 4-Point Content Marketing Audit, Russ explained that great content marketers think of these “bricks” as assets for the company.

Content marketing is the act of producing content that increases leads, sales, and loyalty.

To create great content that drives a return on investment (ROI), start by making content that generates awareness and gets your audience to engage with you…

Content types that drive awareness and create engagement: blog posts, YouTube videos, podcasts, images

Then, you need to make content that generates leads…

Content types that generate leads: webinars, newsletters, templates, cheat sheets, swipe files, free reports, white papers, guides

Next, move on to content that creates excitement and sells regularly…

Content types that create excitement and sell more and more: onboarding resources, support documents, webinars, customer stories, product demos

Finally, produce content that gets your brand advocates to share your content…

Content types that produce advocates and promoters that drive referrals: blog posts, YouTube videos, podcasts, images, social media updates

(RELATED: Perfect Content Marketing: How Content Generates Leads and Sales at Every Step of the Funnel)

The Full Funnel Dream Team

Anyone a ’95-’96 Chicago Bulls fan?

Wait! — you may be wondering — I thought this was about funnels. Why are you asking about basketball?

Well, as Brett Curry pointed out during his presentation, treating your ad campaigns like a basketball team can revolutionize your results.

You see, the old way of thinking is that every campaign is a silo or an island. But a better way is to think of your individual campaigns as teammates.

The CEO of OMG Commerce told the audience, “This is about building a full funnel dream team. It’s beyond building a few campaigns that work and about how to make them all work together as a team to create rapid funnel expansion.”

Slide from Brett Curry's 2017 Content & Commerce Summit presentation featuring the Dream Team

Brett went on to explain how to combine…

  • Google Shopping
  • Search
  • Display
  • YouTube

…to feed and expand the funnel.

To do that, start by going beyond the search query with audience targeting.

Then, just like in basketball, pay attention to those assists. Track assisted conversion for top of funnel (TOFU) campaigns

"Most conversions have an assist...71% of conversions come from multiple visits." ~Brett Curry

Then, keep this in mind:

Being there at the right moment — Brett Curry slide from his 2017 Content & Commerce Summit presentation

Elements of a High Converting Traffic Campaign

No matter where your customers enter, traffic is the road that moves people through your customer journey.

During her presentation, Molly Pittman, DigitalMarketer’s Vice President of Marketing, said there are currently three big traffic stores to choose from:

  1. Google, which is like Yellow Pages
  2. YouTube, which is like television
  3. Facebook, which is like billboard ads

And because of it’s over 1.94 billion active users and easy interface, Molly said Facebook is the clear traffic store to use.

Now, keep in mind, all the traffic in the world won’t fix a bad offer. So, if your campaign is struggling, you may need to take a look at your offer.

(RELATED: Perpetual Traffic podcast Episode 43: Ryan Deiss Shares 4 Steps to Crafting and Optimizing the Perfect Offer)

Once you know your offer is solid, then you can move on to traffic.

One element of high converting traffic campaign is the ad copy.

Molly told the audience that your ad copy should explain why your offer is something that the market actually wants. Not that your offer simply exists.

Just because your offer exists, it doesn’t mean they want to click!

So, what should you do?

Explain why you’re interrupting them by explaining how your offer solves a SPECIFIC problem they’re facing. Your ad copy should focus on the Before and the After.

Use your ad copy to communicate how your offer transforms the customer from the Before state to the After state.

How your offer will transform them from the undesirable Before state to the desireable After state.

Why You Should Get a Little Crazy with Your Marketing

The final speaker of Day 2 came from a major player in the sleep industry: Casper.

Russ Henneberry sat down with Michael McCutcheon, Casper’s Director of Content, to learn the insights and views that are driving Casper’s success… and how we can apply these strategies in our own business.

Michael pointed out that a driving force is how they view themselves at Casper. He told Russ and the audience that they don’t look at themselves as a mattress company. They view themselves as a company that helps people sleep better.

That viewpoint as made all the difference.

Russ asked Michael about taking chances. He asked why the company decided to develop the “napmobile,” a bus outfitted with Casper mattresses, pillows, and sheets that tours the country so people can experience Casper firsthand.

Michael said the “napmobile” is one of his favorite things they’ve done and explained it’s helped create user-generated content.

Marketing is about building extraordinary experiences. Michael advised to, “Always default to doing what’s awesome.”

To enhance your marketing, take some of your budget and put it towards crazy stuff because…

"You can optimize until your head is blue, but if it doesn't surprise them or amaze them it isn't going anywhere anyway." ~Michael McCutcheon

VIP Dinner Presented by Maropost

The final networking party of Content & Commerce Summit was the exclusive VIP-only reception.

Complete with an ice sculpture, speakers, VIP ticket holders, and DigitalMarketer staff sat down to a dinner of Latin-inspired food (including paella and churros) before the last day of the summit.

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 ice sculpture at the VIP party

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 VIP party sit down dinner

(NOTE: Love Content & Commerce Summit? Then you should join us for our next event: Traffic & Conversion Summit! Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and SAVE 50% with Early Bird Pricing. But hurry! The Early Bird promotion is for a limited time. Learn more here.)
Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and save 50% with Early Bird Pricing!

Content & Commerce Summit Day 3:

Doubling 10,000 Businesses

At DigitalMarketer, we’re on a mission to double the size of 10,000 businesses by 2020. So, when we heard that a 14-year-old entrepreneur was in our midst, we took notice.

Meet Ella Pader. She manages Pinterest business accounts and came to Content & Commerce Summit with her dad, James.

Before the opening keynote, Ryan Deiss invited Ella and James to join him on stage…

Ryan Deiss interviewing Ella and James Pader at Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

…for a quick interview.

Ella’s favorite part about running her own business? Being able to wake up and work from bed! 🙂

So she can continue to grow her business, at the end of the interview, Ryan gave Ella and James two tickets to Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 in San Diego, California!

Ryan Deiss with Ella Pader at Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

Our Events Director, DeAnna Rogers, recorded the whole exchange, which you can watch here:

Looking forward to seeing you in San Diego, Ella and James!

Let’s dive into the rest of the final day…

Welcome to Day 3

The opening video for Day 3 highlighted some of the biggest strategies and takeaways from the previous day that marketers can use to strengthen their business…

What else happened on the last day? Well…

How Mobile is Shaping the Future of Selling

Did you know, that more than half the world uses a smartphone?

Are you using this fact to your business’ advantage?

The social web is changing how we discover, research, and, ultimately, buy products, Ezra Firestone said during his opening keynote.

"Websites at some point will become semi-obsolete and people will be making purchases integrated within whatever platform they're using." ~Ezra Firestone

Which is why it’s time to be aggressive about mobile optimization and strategy.

For instance, 67% of consumers start shopping on their mobile device and continue on another. People are moving to bigger devices, like laptops and desktops, to make purchases.

Therefore, the CEO of Smart Marketer said, marketers should mimic user behavior!

Use mobile for your awareness ads…

Use mobile for your awareness ads — a slide from Ezra Firestone's keynote presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…and retarget consumers with tablet and desktop…

Retarget consumers with tablet and desktop — a slide from Ezra Firestone's keynote presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Another mobile strategy is to optimize the top navigation of your mobile site…

Mobile top navigation: more functional header; labeled buttons; search option; important pages bookmarked; sale notice option — a slide from Ezra Firestone's keynote presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Ezra also went on to advise…

  • Add a quick way for users to get back to the top when scrolling through your mobile site
  • Display the entire menu with an option to hide the menu
  • Make your fonts big, and easy to read on a clear, white background

This will help improve user experience, which will ultimately help improve conversions.

This Isn’t Your Diary

If used correctly, the blog is one of the most powerful digital marketing tools at your disposal, Lindsay Marder said from the stage.

But… one of the biggest misconceptions about blogging is that it’s for your diary entries.

This misconception will cause some to miss out on the power of the blog.

The role of the blog lies in its capability to generate awareness for your…

  • Company
  • Brands
  • Employees
  • Partners
  • Products
  • Services

Done wrong and the blog can become a never-ending hamster wheel of content creation that gives zero return on your efforts.

“Let’s avoid that, shall we?” DigitalMarketer’s Manager Editor asked. 🙂

To create a blog that will give you a return, you need to determine the user’s intent. Ask yourself, what does your audience want to do? 

There are three blogs posts types you can use to generate that return. At DigitalMarketer, we affectionately refer to them as…

Blog Post Type #1: The Hungarian Honey How-To — a slide from Lindsay Marder's presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Blog Post Type #2: The Frisky Roundup Retriever — a slide from Lindsay Marder's presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Blog Post Type #3: The French Canadian Comparison Can-Can — a slide from Lindsay Marder's presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Deploy these posts to inform your audience, prospects, and customers about what you have to offer.

But, these posts are nothing without a great headline! If the headline isn’t compelling, you’re just another piece of content doomed to never be consumed.

Use these headline formulas to get your reader’s attention:

Headline formulas from Lindsay Marder's presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

(RELATED: How To Write Blog Posts That Sell)

Too Good Not to Share Quotes

Ryan Moran of Capitalism.com had some amazing takeaways in his Zero to Eight Figures with Physical Products on Amazon.

Ryan Moran during his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

We found these quotes from his presentation thought-provoking and valuable and thought you would, too:

  • “You now control the media because you are the media. You drive the media.”
  • “The turning point from seven to eight figures is — can you take an order, and turn it into a customer?”
  • Ryan Moran on the math behind a seven-figure business: “If your price point on a product averages $25-35, and you can consistently and predictably take 20-40 sales a day on that product, then we need three to five products to make a seven-figure business. This is the four-minute mile for entrepreneurs.”
  • “The brain perceives difference as the rustle in the bush. The way that you carve out a niche in your space is by being or saying something DIFFERENT. Not better, or cheaper, but DIFFERENT.”

Our Favorites of #CCS2017

Throughout the course of Content & Commerce Summit 2017, people took to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, the Content & Commerce app, and more to share their experiences and what their big takeaways were.

These are some of our favorites:

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 attendee sharing about her experience and big takeaway from the event

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 attendee sharing about her experience and big takeaway from the event

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 attendee sharing about her experience and big takeaway from the event

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 attendee sharing about his experience and big takeaway from the event

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 attendee sharing about their experience and big takeaway from the event

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 attendee sharing about her experience and big takeaway from the event

And, here are some of our favorite takeaways from the three-day event…

"If you don't know who your customer is, you can't be customer centric." ~John Fillmore

"What's the one thing successful websites have in common? They meet the user's expectations." ~Justin Rondeau

"URLs get more powerful the longer they exist and the more they get updated." ~Tiffany Yannetta

"Find out WHY your customer is buying. If you don't, you can't market to them." ~Justin Ligeri

"Customers talk to you through your data. Learn how to listen and translate it into action, then you have the edge." ~Scott Desgrosseilliers

"The lack of relevance is the number one failure of almost all Amazon sellers." ~Michael Devlin

Content & Commerce is a lot of work. There’s so much to learn and do! But at DigitalMarketer, we believe you should have at least one good belly laugh a day

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 social share

Maropost Monkey

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 social share

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 social share

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 social share

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 social share

Holy smokes, this audio speaker looks a lot like Batman!

Audio speaker that has an uncanny resemblance to Batman

Audio speaker that has an uncanny resemblance to Batman

And not to alarm anyone, but there were two book thieves at the event.

An Content & Commerce Summit attendee trying to "steal" books by DigitalMarketer

Don’t worry, we took care of them. 😉

How to Leave Content & Commerce Summit with Results

Content & Commerce Summit 2017 has come to an end. Want to know the difference between leaving with great memories and leaving with results?

Write it down.

Before you leave the conference, write down what you’re going to do:

  • What’s the main thing you want to accomplish?
  • What are you going to start on first?

Because when you leave the breakout sessions, the outside world is waiting for you.

So, to keep the same focus you may have found or experienced here at Content & Commerce Summit 2017, write down what you want to get done.

To everyone who attended Content & Commerce Summit, thank you all! Thank you for spending time with us.

We hope what you learned here will help you double the size of your business and help others do the same!

See you at the next event!

(NOTE: Love Content & Commerce Summit? Then you should join us for our next event: Traffic & Conversion Summit! Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and SAVE 50% with Early Bird Pricing. But hurry! The Early Bird promotion is for a limited time. Learn more here.)
Reserve your seat today for Traffic & Conversion Summit 2018 and save 50% with Early Bird Pricing!

The post The Best of Content & Commerce Summit 2017: 104 Insights, Actionable Ecommerce Strategies, & Digital Media Content appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

Facebook’s Targeting Expansion Box: Should You Check It?

It’s crazy what a difference checking one box can make on the success of your Facebook ad campaign.

In November of 2016, Facebook rolled out targeting expansion:

“Targeting expansion gives us the option to expand your target audience if we think doing so will get you better results. It allows us to adjust your interest-based targeting (the kind you choose in the ‘Detailed Targeting’ section of ad set creation) to reach more people who may get you more and/or cheaper results, but wouldn't otherwise have been in your target audience. It's available to ad sets that are part of campaigns using the conversions, app installs, lead generation, engagement or traffic marketing objectives.”

You’ll find this button underneath the detailed targeting section at the ad set level of your campaigns:

Where to check Facebook Targeting Expansion

Long story short, when you check this box, Facebook will show your ad to people outside of who you have already selected… if they believe those people are likely to convert.

But… does it work?

We decided to put this box to the test!

Facebook Targeting Expansion: The Test

We created two campaigns. They were identical OTHER than one had the box checked and the other didn’t.

This was a website conversion campaign optimizing for people to opt-in for our “Perfect Blog Post Template” Lead Magnet.

We created 14 ad sets…

  • One to warm traffic (people who are familiar with your brand)
  • Five to various lookalike audiences
  • Eight to varying clusters of interests

Here’s a screenshot for those of you that are visual learners:

DigitalMarketer's 14 Ad Sets

And here’s the ad on Facebook:

We ran the test for ten days, with a $5,000 budget for each ad set…

…and the results were VERY surprising and unanimous across each ad set!

Facebook Targeting Expansion: The Test Results

When we checked Facebook’s targeting EXPANSION box our cost per lead was 25% higher…

A graph depicting DigitalMarketer's test results for Facebook Targeting Expansion

…and it also produced less volume. When we checked the expand box, we generated 322 fewer leads than when didn’t check the box.

The cost per unique click was 17 cents higher when we checked the expand box. 

The conversion rate on the page dropped from 66% to 58% when we checked the expand box. This makes me think that the traffic hitting the page was less qualified for the ad sets where the expand box was checked.

Every one of the above metrics from this test goes to show that checking the expand interest box produced WORST results for our campaign.

So, here are my thoughts….

1. This Isn’t the End All Be All… You Should Test Facebook Targeting Expansion

Remember, this is just one test.

Although we saw a significant difference in our metrics when we checked the expand interest box, this doesn’t mean that this will be the case 100% of the time. 

There are a few factors here at play, like the objective. We were running a website conversion campaign for this test. The expand interest button could behave differently under different objectives (I wouldn’t expect to see anything drastically different from what we saw, though).

Moral of the story… if you’re curious, run this test on your own.

If you’re not, take our advice and DO NOT check the expand interest box when launching campaigns, especially if they’re to cold traffic (people who have never heard of you before).

(RELATED: Perpetual Traffic Episode 113: Facebook Interest Targeting Expansion: Should You Use It in Your Campaigns? [Case Study])

2. Facebook Targeting Expansion Could Be Used for Scaling

I wouldn’t recommend checking the expand interest box when launching campaigns to cold traffic, BUT I do believe there could be a use for this box when scaling your ads.

Once a campaign has run to the point of fatigue (your frequency is high) clicking this button could allow you to scale and show your ads to more people that are most like the ones who have already taken your desired action. 

This box could allow you to broaden your targeting and to quit showing your ad to the same users over and over.

We are in the process of testing this strategy and will report back.

(RELATED: The Ultimate Guide to Scaling Paid Traffic Campaigns)

3. This Feature Will Get Better

While the results aren’t very promising for Facebook’s expanded interest box, I do believe we will see improvements over time.

Facebook’s algorithm is getting smarter every day. As the platform gathers more data and feedback on this feature, they will continue to improve it. My guess is that we will test this again in six months and see very different results.

But for now, leave the box unchecked… our tests show that you’ll see better results for your Facebook ad campaigns.

(NOTE: Want The Ultimate Facebook Ad Template Library? Copy and paste these seven proven Facebook ad campaigns to create low-cost, high-converting ads on demand. Get them here.)

Facebook Ad Templates

The post Facebook’s Targeting Expansion Box: Should You Check It? appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

How to Create a Facebook Public Figure Page and Why You Should

Want to create a Facebook presence that’s separate from your personal profile? Have you considered creating a public figure Facebook page? In this article, you’ll discover why you should consider a Facebook public figure page and how to set one up. Why a Public Figure Facebook Page? Your personal brand is your most valuable asset. […]

This post How to Create a Facebook Public Figure Page and Why You Should first appeared on .
– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

Facebook Ads Dynamic Creative, Instagram Visual Backdrops, and YouTube Fan Sponsors

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Social Media Marketing Talk Show, a news show for marketers who want to stay on the leading edge of social media. On this week’s Social Media Marketing Talk Show with Michael Stelzner, we explore Facebook ad updates with Amanda Bond, Instagram updates with Jeff Sieh, YouTube fan sponsors […]

This post Facebook Ads Dynamic Creative, Instagram Visual Backdrops, and YouTube Fan Sponsors first appeared on .
– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

How to Use Facebook Audience Optimization for Better Organic Exposure

Want to increase your Facebook news feed exposure? Looking for a solution that doesn’t involve ads? In this article, you’ll discover how to improve your organic visibility via Facebook’s Audience Optimization feature. Why Use Organic Post Targeting? Facebook gives businesses access to a large global audience, but the platform is becoming increasingly saturated with branded […]

This post How to Use Facebook Audience Optimization for Better Organic Exposure first appeared on .
– Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

Episode 115: 3 Facebook Tests to Double Conversions and Decrease Cost Per Lead by 40%

You gotta test this stuff!

Learn the exciting results from three Facebook ads tests and put these strategies to work in your campaigns. The experts share how running these tests resulted in a 40% decrease in cost per lead in one case and doubled conversions in another.

And be sure to tune in next week for more data on these ongoing tests!

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL LEARN:

  • How to get your Facebook pixel on the Thank You Page of a perpetual webinar (« It’s harder than it sounds).
  • Why you should “tell” Facebook exactly what you want (« Doing this doubled our conversions and cut our cost per lead in half).
  • The button you shouldn’t click in Facebook if you need results right out of the gate.

LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Episode 113: Facebook Interest Targeting Expansion: Should You Use It in Your Campaigns? [Case Study]
Episode 108: How Facebook’s Ad Algorithm Works
Facebook Standard Event
Screenshot from Molly on Targeting Conversions, Test 2:

Thanks so much for joining us this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave us a review on iTunes!

The post Episode 115: 3 Facebook Tests to Double Conversions and Decrease Cost Per Lead by 40% appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

Content & Commerce Summit 2017: 39 Best Ecommerce & Digital Media Highlights From Day 1

It’s going on right now. The question to ask yourself is: Are you ready for it?

It’s a changing of the guard and it will play a major role in digital advertising…

This was the main focus of Ryan Deiss‘ opening keynote at Day 1 of Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

Read on to learn…

  • How to prepare for this changing of the guard and other words of wisdom from Ryan’s opening keynote
  • What’s working now in digital commerce and publishing
  • The highlights, insights, and strategies from Content & Commerce Summit 2017

You’re about to get the best of Content & Commerce Summit (besides being there, of course 😉 )!

Putting It All Together (Behind the Scenes of Content & Commerce Summit 2017)

It takes a lot of time.

We no sooner wrapped up last year’s Content & Commerce Summit then we started planning for 2017!

In the weeks leading up to the Summit, we packed up an 18-wheeler with everything we’d need, from couches to AV equipment.

Loading up the truck to send all the Content & Commerce Summit equipment to L.A.

And when it arrived in L.A. from Austin, Texas, we got to work putting tables together and prepping event bags for attendees and speakers…

Setting up tables for Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Prepping Content & Commerce Summit event bags

…getting sponsor booths set up…

Setting up sponsor booths at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Setting up sponsor booths at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…ensuring everything was in its proper place and that the ballrooms were ready for our attendees and speakers…

Riding the escalators and getting the DigtialMarketer gears to their homes as we set up Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Setting up the ballrooms at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

…so it ultimately looks like this on opening day…

The stage in the DigitalMarketer ballroom at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

During setup, with the Emmy Awards going on next door, we kept our eyes peeled for our favorite TV stars (we’re big Game of Thrones fans at the office). Here’s our Justin Rondeau posing with the Emmy statue…

Justin Rondeau posing with the Emmy Statue at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

With the day before the Summit wrapping up, we threw a Welcome Reception for Content & Commerce Summit attendees. The mixer, presented by Quality Score, was complete with a taco bar and Connect Four!

Connect 4 at the Welcome Reception for Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Taco bar at the Content & Commerce 2017 Welcome Reception

I’m So Excited!

Attendees just can’t hide it. There’s an undeniable energy in the air, and that anticipation and excitement is contagious.

Tweet from C&C attendee

Instagram update from C&C attendee

C&C app update from C&C attendee

You can see it as people run into old friends and connect with new ones. As they go through registration and are handed their name badge and Content & Commerce Summit event bag. People are pumped!

We checked in with Content & Commerce Summit attendees before Ryan’s keynote. Here’s what they were looking forward to most…

Exclusive Interview with Ryan Deiss

Before DigtialMarketer’s Co-Founder and CEO, Ryan Deiss, delivered his opening keynote presentation, Christine Haas, DigitalMarketer’s Director of Communications, exclusively interviewed him backstage.

Watch the video below to get a look behind the curtain and to learn Ryan’s thoughts just before he kicks off Content & Commerce Summit and unpacks what’s working now in digital commerce and publishing:

The Challenge on the Horizon

When you expect changes in your business, you’re able to see challenges on the horizon.

And as the opening Content & Commerce Summit video reminded the audience, the challenge on the horizon is here. With Amazon buying Whole Foods and other big box stores, like Sears, on shaky ground, the digital landscape is changing… fast!

That’s why you’re here. So you can learn what changes and challenges are coming.

Watch the full opening video here:

Are You Ready for the Changing of the Guard?

This changing of the guard is creating a rare window of opportunity that we’re unlikely to see again in our lifetime.

That’s what Ryan told attendees during his opening keynote.

And this changing of the guard is being driven by Amazon.

While this change is terrifying, it’s going to be okay, Ryan assured the audience. You have a reason to exist.

What you learn during Ryan’s keynote and Content & Commerce Summit as a whole will help you deal with this change.

It’s important to remember that Amazon is not the enemy.

"Amazon is not the enemy." Ryan Deiss during his opening keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

But they are the standard. Amazon is setting the bar that everyone must meet.

How can you compete and win in the “Age of Amazon”?

Love your customer. While that may sound like a load of fluff, stay with me here.

Make no mistake, Amazon is focusing on their customer. It’s part of their business model…

"The most important single thing is to focus obsessively on the customer. Our goal is to be earth's most customer-centric company." ~Jeff Bezos, CEO & President of Amazon

And they’re doing that by making it easy for the customer. Amazon wants to make it as easy as possible for the customer to buy and then to return to buy again.

But Ryan argued that making it “easy” for the customer isn’t customer-centric.

So, how do you love your customer more than Amazon?

Talk to your customer directly using content and commerce. Content and commerce is the tactic you will use to show your customers that you care about them more than Amazon does.

We’ve identified that there are three stages to this content and commerce journey.

Three stages of content and commerce: 1. Content-Driven Commerce 2. Curated Commerce 3. Community-Driven Commerce

Each stage builds upon the rest. Each stage deepens the relationship with your customer.

What are some other key takeaways from Ryan’s keynote? Well…

  • “In the future, the words ‘brand’ and ‘community’ will be interchangeable. And no one will be able to claim they have a brand unless they have a community to go with it.”

“In the future, the words 'brand' and 'community' will be interchangeable. And no one will be able to claim they have a brand unless they have a community to go with it.” ~Ryan Deiss

  • “If you can tell a person a story, you can capture their attention. If you can help them tell a new story about themselves, you’ll capture their hearts.”

"If you can tell a person a story, you can capture their attention. If you can help them tell a new story about themselves, you'll capture their hearts." ~Ryan Deiss

  • Tell your customers where you stand, even if you think they may not like you for it. Like clothing store Chubbies does here…

What clothing store Chubbies believes

There were so many great takeaways from Ryan’s keynote. We just had to share it with you! You can watch Ryan’s entire keynote here:

What else happened on Day 1 of #CCS2017? Let’s see…

Welcome to the Mobile Movement

There’s no denying the importance of email. But, when it comes to reaching your customers, email is also super crowded and competitive.

It doesn’t matter how good your subject line is when your message isn’t even being seen, Oli Billson told the audience. The Founder and CEO of Oliver Billson Marketing went on to say…

Most people figure out how they will generate new leads instead of worrying about how they will sell. The result? Half built bridges. ~Oliver Billson Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

So, how do we open up channels of communication we’re going to need in a sales process to complete these bridges?

In his presentation, Proven “Dynamic Response” Mobile Marketing Campaigns to Accelerate Sales, Generate More Leads, and Increase Engagement, Oli told the audience to turn to the device in their pockets and purses.

The new opportunity: Connect with the device in your prospects' pockets. ~Oliver Billson Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

Mobile devices offer marketers a huge opportunity to reach their customers and generate sales because people find text messages less intimidating.

To fully leverage the power of the mobile marketing to accelerate your sales process, there are three “recipes” you need to employ. They are…

Goal 1: Get their phone number. Goal 2: Get into their phone. Goal 3: Start the conversation. ~Oliver Billson Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

As Oli went on to say…

People don't want to wait for their information. Skip the email — just text them. ~Oli Billson

Interview with Hint Water’s Founder & CEO, Kara Goldin

A very senior exec at one of the largest soda companies in the world told her that her idea wouldn’t work. She was told that they would be roadkill within months.

But that didn’t stop Kara Goldin, Founder and CEO of Hint Water®, who went on to launch the award-winning brand in 2005.

Flavored only with natural fruit, Hint® produces the leading flavored water with no sweeteners and nothing artificial. And the company is thriving.

Before taking the Content & Commerce Summit stage, Kara tweeted…

Kara tweets her excitement before her keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

The feeling is mutual! 🙂

Kara sat down with Roland Frasier to give the insights and strategies that helped her launch Hint®.

Roland Frasier (left) and Kara Goldin (right) sit down at Content & Commerce Summit 2017 to talk about the founding of Hint.

Sweetie, Americans love sweets. Your product will never be anything,” that was one take on Hint® when Kara began pitching it. But Kara didn’t hear any of the criticism.

She told the audience:

Tweet on Kara Goldin's presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017: "Look at naysayers as gifts of information."

Because it boils down to finding if you’re doing something and seeing if you’re getting traction with your consumers and solving their problems.

Kara went on to say to figure out your fears and challenge them…

"Don't be afraid to build a plane while you're flying it." ~Kara Goldin

When building her flavored water brand and wellness company, she said the three most important relationships were with…

  • The Customer: It’s important to remember you’re not only selling stuff but also solving the problem for your consumers. Kara said it’s important to have a dialogue — really hear what customers are saying about how your brand impacts their lives. The dialogue with the customer and ability to actually hear from them gets deeper as you build the relationship.
  • Her team: Those at Hint® don’t just agree with the brand’s beliefs — they live them. At Hint®, they don’t have people running around drinking Red Bull. Their team is filled with people who really want to be healthier and not just from a weight or health perspective.
  • Her husband: He helped co-found Hint® by trusting Kara’s vision and process and has been a cheerleader since her lightbulb moment sparked.

3 Steps to Consistent Facebook Ad ROI

They know Facebook ads.

The Dominate Web Media duo, Keith Krance and Ralph Burns, took to the stage to share how to use Facebook video ads to pre-frame viewers for the sale, no matter your industry.

And it only takes a few steps.

In The 3-Step Formula to 10X Your Facebook Ad Spend with Consistent ROI, Keith and Ralph said Step 1 is to stop the scroll.

Stop the person from scrolling through their Facebook feed and pay attention to your message. To do this, at the very beginning of your Facebook video ad, do one or a combination of the following:

  • Use motion
  • Literally say, “Stop,” in your opening line
  • Include text overlay
  • Have creative content that’s unique

Step 2 is called EDIE (educate, demonstrate, inform, entertain). During your video, make sure you…

  • Educate your audience
  • Demonstrate something to your audience
  • Inform your audience
  • Entertain your audience

(RELATED: Perpetual Traffic podcast Episode 67: The Proven 3-Step Formula to Transform Your Business with Video Ads [Part 1])

Include at least one EDIE tactic, or more if that makes sense, in each of your Facebook ad videos. This is a simple way to get your product message across in your video without sounding all “weird and salesy.”

“When you make content like this,” Dominate Web Media’s Founder, Keith, said about EDIE, “you’re getting to the heart of your customer. They think they are making a logical decision, but they are really justifying an emotional one.”

Keith Krance giving his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Step 3 is the call-to-action (CTA). Many marketers may wait till the end of their video to make their CTA. But if you want to compel people to make a purchase, consider including your CTA earlier.

Without being pitchy, include your CTA where it makes sense earlier in your video AND within the copy of your Facebook ad.

Ralph, Dominate Web Media’s Agency CEO, told the audience, “Even if they’ve only watched five minutes of a ten-minute video, give them an opportunity to buy. Make sure to include the CTA link in your post copy.”

Ralph Burns giving his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

How to Get Access to Millions of Ecommerce Testing at No Charge

DigitalMarketer’s Director of Marketing, Justin Rondeau reminded his audience that successful websites and online businesses need to do one thing and one thing only: Meet the visitor’s expectations.

What’s the easiest way to meet a visitor’s expectations? Take the most used trends by the world’s largest online retailers and apply them to your business!

In his 11 Conversion Lessons the World’s Largest Online Retailers Spent Millions to Learn, Justin shared his biggest takeaways from analyzing online retail giants.

For instance, users hate being forced to create an account at checkout. Making someone create an account to place their order is a surefire way to raise your cart abandonment.

Multi-million dollar ecommerce stores, in most cases, give shoppers the ability to check out as a guest or “Express Checkout.”

Here’s how REI.com is handling the account creation process:

REI letting customers create an account or checkout as a guest

Crate & Barrel knows it too…

Crate & Barrel letting new customers checkout as a guest and returning customers use Express Checkout

 In the words of Justin Rondeau, “Always include guest checkout. Seriously.”

Then, if you offer free shipping (or provide it after a purchase reaches a certain value), advertise that fact early and often — from your home page to the checkout page. Free shipping is still king for ecommerce stores.

And when it comes to payment options, which there are a ton of, providing every payment option out there is actually counter-productive.

If you sell internationally, you should be using geo-targeting to make sure you are showing payment options that are best for that region. To visitors who would be MOST LIKELY to use it.

For example, Dutch visitors use the payment option IDEAL more than US visitors. While a US visitor could use IDEAL, it is more likely that they won’t.

So, before you list every payment option under the sun, look at the regions you do business in most. Then evaluate whether you are meeting their preferred needs with your current options.

(RELATED: 21 Lessons the World’s Largest Online Retailers Spent Millions to Learn [2nd Edition])

Are You Alienating Your Audience?

Many current consumer engagement strategies are intrusive — from ads on autoplay to ones that are impossible to close — many marketers are guilty of pushing their audience to the brink.

During his presentation, Craig Kapilow quoted a Kate Harrison article from Forbes:

“Today’s consumers don’t want brands aggressively pushing their way into social media feeds, wheter on Facebook, through promoted Pins or Tweets, or paid-for Snapchat stories.”

The Senior Director of Integrated Marketing at Rue La La said it’s time to adapt. The ad industry and modern consumer engagement tactics need to evolve.

After all, on many platforms, there’s not much standing between the consumer and an ad-free experience…

From Hulu to YouTube, consumers can pay a small fee to be ad-free. ~Craig Kapilow Content & Commerce 2017 Presentation Slide

So, what do you do?

You have to engage with your consumers differently… or you risk alienating them.

In Content, Commerce, & Customer Acquisition: A New Path for Accelerating Subscription-Based Business, Craig offered these tips to improve your consumer engagement:

  • Leverage user-generated content (« especially on your website)
  • Video, video, and… more video
  • Be timely with your content
  • Have fun with your brand (« humor is a blessed thing)
  • Be relevant and personalize your content

How to Build Rapport with Your Audience

No matter your business or industry, we all have one thing in common (well, probably more than one, but definitely this one!)…

  1. We all want to connect with people and brands who are actually interested in our product/service

To connect with these people and brands, we need to build rapport. But, like most things in life, building rapport takes time. And where do you even start?

Start by following these nine steps from Joe Polish, Founder and President of Genius Network®.

Joe Polish during his Content & Commerce Summit 2017 presentation

During The 9-Step Magic Rapport Formula that Connects Your Brand with the People and Companies that Matter, Joe told the audience to follow these nine steps to connect your brand with your market:

  1. When you meet people, focus on how you can help them
  2. Be willing to invest time, money, and energy on relationships
  3. Be the person people will always answer the phone for
  4. Be grateful and valuable
  5. Treat people like you want to be treated
  6. Be fun and memorable… not boring and uptight
  7. Appreciate people… everyone wants to feel significant
  8. Give value on the spot
  9. Keep as close to “in person” as you can when dealing with people

1 = 3

Richard Lindner brought it during his presentation!

In Turning 1 Customer into 3: Strategies to Turn Happy Customers into Brand Evangelists and Promoters, the Co-Founder and President of DigitalMarketer spoke about how to leverage…

  • Email
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Social media
  • Your existing customer base

…to multiply your business.

Richard Lindner during his presentation at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

What were some of his biggest takeaways?

For starters, keep in mind that you will instantly lose ten customers if you ask a disgruntled one to review you. However, if you ask one happy customer to review you, you’ll gain three!

No matter what you sell, there are a couple of points where any customer is most excited about what they just purchased or what’s about to happen.

So, make that as part of your strategy.

Encourage and enable a trigger with a series of positive rewards, slowly pushing them down the path of a customer to a promoter.

Finding Your Extra Gear

The final presentation of the night came from serial entrepreneur and endurance athlete Jesse Itzler.

Jesse Itzler during his keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

He said we all have an extra gear, yet so many of us don’t know it. During his keynote, he spoke about finding his extra gear and how to tap into a reserve tank we all have, but so few of us know how to access.

He quickly had the audience enraptured.

The attentive audience during Jesse Itzler's keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

Jesse talked about finding purpose…

  • “When you can find a thing you love that brings good to the world, that’s how you know what to do.” 

He spoke about experience…

  • “Experience is over-rated. It takes too long.”
  • “For me, not having experience guaranteed that everything I did would have a different result because I was forced to do it differently!”

He told us to get over ourselves…

  • “The limitations we put on ourselves are self-imposed.”
  • “Once you get over the fear of being embarrassed, it’s the most liberating thing.” 

Jesse Itzler during his keynote at Content & Commerce Summit 2017

He revealed how to push past our wall…

  • “When your brain says you’re done, you still have 40% left. The first time we experience pain, our body says, ‘stop.’ When we ignore the discomfort and tap into our reserve bank, that’s where the gold is.”

Finally, he closed by saying, “You didn’t come this far to only come this far.”

That’s all folks! Be sure to check back tomorrow for highlights and insights from Day 2 of Content & Commerce Summit 2017.

And if you’re a Content & Commerce Summit attendee, use your programs to track those aha moments and set goals to implement what you’ve learned. 🙂

The post Content & Commerce Summit 2017: 39 Best Ecommerce & Digital Media Highlights From Day 1 appeared first on DigitalMarketer.

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