Stephen, Nevil and myself attended the annual Leicester Digital Live event on the 8th of October (I’m Charlie by the way). With ticket sale profits going to Heart Link Children’s Charity and an eclectic lineup of speakers on the agenda, I was pretty excited. After a few takeaway coffees and a catch-up, we headed down to the Haymarket Theatre so I’m reporting back with some of my highlights from the conference:
Kicking-off the day was Jason Miller, Head of Brand at Microsoft Advertising. It was (probably) one of my favourite talks from the day and a lot of what Jason explained, I could resonate and agree with. It was all about being creative with search – something that is taking the industry by storm and we could all do better!
He deep-dived into micro-moments, keyword creativity, content creation and looking at search data from a completely different angle. A great example of creativity in search was from Snickers. Jason revealed that the famous chocolate brand set bids on commonly misspelt keywords and target their “You’re not you when you’re hungry” ads at users spelling search terms incorrectly. As a result, this generated 558,589 impressions in two days and increased brand awareness massively.
Skipping to the the third talk of the day with Judith Lewis, from DeCabbit Consultancy, she summed up the importance of brand building very elegantly.
I really liked Judith’s presentation for her honesty and a phrase that stuck with me afterwards was “if you’re not being seen, you’re not being remembered”.
Judith explained that 29% of consumers are more likely to go to a competitor if they’re ignored on social media.
She also stated that customers are willing to pay, on average $19.83 more if they get a response to their query in 5 minutes or less. These two facts grabbed me, having worked as a community manager previously, this information only further solidified my knowledge that a strong social customer service strategy is essential.
Jim Rowe (Bot)
This is a chat I was looking forward to, and turned out to be Nevil’s favourite. Not just because if you add ‘bot’ to his name, it says ‘robot’. Yes, it’s Jim Rowe bot. It was a fascinating presentation about the past, present and future of chatbots. Astonishingly, there are currently 300,000 bots already created for Facebook Messenger (the most cost-effective place to take advantage of bots). Jim’s chat has inspired us to look into chatbots for our clients so watch this space.
Loved this talk from Andraž, who spoke about how it’s more important to focus on the people who didn’t convert, rather than the group who did in the digital space, referring to this as ‘asteroid analogy’. His view is that it’s a bad time to be a mediocre eCommerce company, something that Stephen and I couldn’t agree more with. Owning a USP, removing friction from the customer journey, utilising omnichannel solutions and investing in data have never been so prominent.
We were on the edge of our seats throughout Fernando’s talk. He uncovered the best practises for ranking at position 0 (featured snippets) and anybody in the world of SEO will know how tough it can be to obtain this. There’s three types of featured snippets: paragraph, list and table.
Paragraph: Question (awareness stage)
List: Preposition (consideration stage)
Table: Comparison (comparison stage)
According to research from SEMrush, the average paragraph featured snippets have a word count of 43 and include 22 headings. In addition to this, they must have 12 images all with relevant alt text and 33 external links. Fernando also went into great detail about list and table snippets – which was extremely useful for our SEO team. We’ll be putting this knowledge to use over the upcoming weeks!
Towards the end of the day, we were brimming with new knowledge but still had space to hear from Maddy Potts (University of Nottingham). She focused on content creation and made the point that content should be the “API between product and user”. She dispelled a lot of the smoke and buzzwords around creating content, leaving behind terms such as “entertain, educate, inform” and “content is king” in favour of using empathy to get to know their customers. Stephen and I particularly enjoyed hearing a refreshing approach to content and her opinion on not “blindly following trends” as she puts it.
All in all, as one of the first digital events I’ve attended, it was thoroughly enjoyable. We’re all looking forward to returning next year! If you’ve got any questions about anything spoken about here, just drop us a message.