INBOUND has blown my mind. I had the joy of taking some of my marketing team to the HubSpot founded conference in Boston this week. 21,400K people have been here attending Keynotes, Spotlight Talks and Breakout sessions on Marketing, Content, Social Media, Digital, Video, Leadership, and much more. The education and team bonding while watching former first lady, Michelle Obama; writer, producer, director and comedian, Judd Apatow and Refinery 29 Co-Founder, Piera Gelardi is surprisingly hard to describe. And I am rarely at a loss for words. Maybe I was ready to be inspired this week. Maybe I was ready to hear the common theme of authenticity preached to me LOUDLY. Maybe I was ready to spend time getting to know three people on my team far deeper than I knew them before. But whatever the reason, I am very grateful it happened as we were invited by the Hubspot team as we evaluated their email system. I had never heard of INBOUND before last week. Where was I? At AAM, LMA or AMA clearly.
Well I am convinced even more now than before that B2B has much to learn from the B2C market about marketing and especially from the start-up community.
Here are a sampling of my favorite companies and speakers from the last few days. Check them out if you want to be impressed and inspired.
Brene Brown, Researcher and Best-Selling Author. If you don't know her yet, you're living under a rock. I urge you to get out fast and read her new book Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone
HubSpot, the creator of INBOUND and a fast growing and public marketing and sales software company that is nimble, creative and believes businesses need to be more human. Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah are the brilliant and charming Co-Founders of Hubspot.
Piera Gelardi is one of the Co-Founders of Refinery 29 and the Executive Creative Director. Listening to how they are changing women's brand in the world through myriad creative paths including a partner program with Getty Images called the No Apologies Collection, or by creating a women directed film series through Shatterbox Anthology or through her I am ..... exercise was breathtaking.
Michelle Obama was thoughtful and gracious and smart and authentic and shared so many wonderful stories about her experiences in the White House, as well as some from before and after. Her humor, charm and ability to connect with thousands of people was unique and so powerful. Yes, I am gushing. I'm not easily impressed. She may be the most impressive person I have ever heard speak. Along with her husband.
There were many others who were equally incredible on smaller stages. And all I can think is I am so grateful.
In TED-like talks, Dave Kerpen, NYT's Best Selling Author and Co-Founder of Likable Media and Likable Local, spoke on The ROI of Gratitude and his wife, Carrie Kerpen spoke later on her new book, coming in January, WorkIt. Both have Social Media knowledge and charisma to fill all of the BCEC.
Shabnam Mogharabi, the CEO of Soul Pancake, a media and entertainment company that answers Life's Big Questions, creates and markets brilliant content and videos that I had seen but did not know they were behind. Her presentation was called Watch. Like. Share. I cried 3 times in her incredibly perfect presentation. The power of video well done. I implore you to watch When Do You Feel Most Beautiful?, and #powerofpuppies (Surprised With Puppies). I dare you not to cry. She may have been the best small stage presenter I have ever seen in relaying a ton of useful information in the most entertaining way.
Larry Kim the founder of WordStream and Mobile Monkey gave a high speed hysterical presentation on the Top 10 FB and Twitter Content Promotion Hacks. It is really all about finding the Unicorns amongst a Sea of Donkeys and maximizing them. The weirdest thing is I used that phrase last week in an apology letter. His content was rich and his pace was all New York.
I could go on and on but I wanted to share some inspiration with you. We are all marketers, in one form or another. My team and I work hard to help our firm, Alvarez & Marsal, and our Business Units best communicate how we help clients. I am inspired to run back to the office and share this content across the firm. I have a million ideas to implement - the challenge is always to prioritize, stay focused and implement. I was also strongly reminded to be my authentic self in all I do. Looking forward to it.
Maybe I was ready to be inspired this week. Maybe I was ready to hear the common theme of authenticity preached to me LOUDLY. Maybe I was ready to spend time getting to know three people on my team far deeper than I knew them before. But whatever the reason, I am very grateful it happened this week. The timing was perfect.