Trying to keep my eyes open while typing…
Oh it’s been a crazy week so far. Social Media Marketing World was a 2 day (3 day if you count Sunday afternoon) whirlwind of learning, networking, and brainstorming hopefully great ideas. Somewhere in there I managed to do a little blogging and attempt some managerial accounting. For the record, sitting at the airport waiting for a red eye flight is the wrong time to try and do your capital budgeting homework. My cue to stop was when I read a question 3 times and still didn’t process what the question was asking me. These are the moments that make balancing a career and grad school tough. On top of already being exhausted, I know that when I get home I not only have to debrief my team on what I learned and develop a recap blog for our site, I have to jump back into several large projects that have end of week deadlines. It is going to be a crazy few days, and that isn’t even taking into consideration that my accounting final is a week from Saturday. My level of exhaustion is increasing just thinking about it.
So lets start with SMMW. Day 2 was a bit calmer than Day 1 (be sure to check out my recap of Day 1 as well), but no less interesting or thought provoking. Live video was still the talk of the town today and while some of it was a repeat of sentiments shared yesterday, there were plenty of great sound bites that made you stop and think. First big point, everyone can learn to be successful in live video. Going live can be scary, and it may not come naturally to everyone, but practice makes perfect. Second, live vide demands authenticity. Shaan Puri of blab emphasized that “no one wants to read your press release, they want to see what you’re all about.” The insights weren’t just tips though; Mari Smith posited that we will see Facebook Messenger and Live merged to offer the ultimate customer service experience. Those are the types of high hopes that marketers have for this burgeoning medium.
My second session of the day was on Google Analytics and was a bit of a let down so I’ll skip over that and go straight to the session dedicated to discussing how marketers can use Facebook Live. Specifically, the session offered 25 ideas for content types that brands can create using Facebook Live as well as best practice tips. Some of the ideas were the obvious ones, behind the scenes, product reveals, but the exercise of going through the different ideas encouraged attendees to actively think on the spot how they would use each suggestion. That in the moment brainstorm can sometimes be the breeding ground for the best ideas. Moore important in my opinion than the ideas presented at this session was the presenter’s enthusiasm, and I think this is something that was apparent throughout the sessions. My favorite thing about going to conferences is being in a place where you can share your enthusiasm with other people who have the same passions and desire to succeed in your space that you do. My favorite sessions were the ones where the presenter was so excited about what they do that you couldn’t help but get excited about what you could do if you implemented the strategies they were talking about. To that point, Marcus Sheridan, aka The Sales Lion, followed up his awesome session with Gary Vaynerchuk with an equaling engaging session on creating compelling content. I knew about Marcus and his story before the conference, but I did not know the level of his passion and enthusiasm. Even before the session started, he was walking around and talking to people and taking an active interest in why they were there and what they had already learned. His motto for content creation is “they ask, you answer” and it is something that he has thrived at in his own business. But it is not just for show, you could see that mindset as he talked to people, finding out about his audience and building the answers to their questions into the session.
This recap may seem a bit out of place on a blog dedicated to balancing career and grad school, but this type of conference is in fact part of my career and my learning curve in growing in my industry. It is also a source of inspiration for me. In the past few days I have been surrounded by the people who are the best in the field that I operate in. They have put in the effort and climbed the hurdles to become the respected professionals that they are, and that is motivating. Seeing their success only fuels my fire to do the same, and I know that getting through school and receiving my MBA is a piece to my success puzzle. So yes, I am totally exhausted and going home to a large pile of work and homework to finish and the next couple days may not be the most fun in my life. However, those are the days that show me that I am strong enough, smart enough, and driven enough to not only get through, but thrive. My Monday Motivation for next week may in fact be looking back at my notes from this week and plotting my next step towards the top of my game.
Here’s to everyone who is chasing their dreams and making it count. I’m sending you good vibes and a bit of the inspiration I absorbed this week.