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Why Business Schools Need to Join the INBOUND Marketing Revolution

INBOUND14

Did you hear about the revolution in Boston? No, I’m not talking about that revolution. There weren’t any Redcoats here, but there sure was a lot of orange.

Yes, orange, because that is the brand color of Hubspot, which held INBOUND 2014  last week.

More than 10,000 marketing professionals including representatives from higher education institutions around the world such as the Haas School of Business, Union Graduate College, Boston College, Trinity Western University, Hotel Ecoliere de Lausanne, Tufts University, and S P Jain School of Global Management in Singapore gathered at the Boston Convention Center to “Come Together. Get Inspired. Be Remarkable.”

The experience, and it is an experience, lived up to the hype.

 

Former Apple and current Canva evangelist, Guy Kawasaki, kicked off the event with a welcome keynote on innovation. Drawing on lessons from Steve Jobs, Guy shared a number of key takeaways including:

“Great innovation occurs when you jump to the next curve.”

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“Don’t fight on price. Fight on value.”

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From there, it was three days of high-energy sessions. Among the topics:

  • “It’s Not You…It’s Me.” The Truth Behind Why Your Prospects Won’t Engage
  • How To Tell a Brand Story People Will Love
  • How To Create A First Class Social Media Strategy
  • Science Of Social Media
  • Visual Storytelling: You Know You Need It, Now Learn How to Produce It
  • Prove Your ROI: Make Smarter Marketing Decisions By Tracking Marketing Analytics
  • Everything You Didn’t Know About Marketing To Millennials
  • Nonprofit & Education Customer Panel: How to Increase Engagement with Inbound Marketing
  • Maintaining The Control Of The Sale In A Competitive Situation
  • The Idea Is The Easy Part: Selling Innovative Ideas
  • What Ted Talks Can Teach You About the Future Of Marketing
  • Tweet Smarter: Unlock More Value From Twitter With Data-Driven Best Practices
  • Everything You Need To Know For Your Next Website Redesign

And that’s just a handful of the 170+ sessions, not to mention adrenaline-pumping keynotes from Simon Sinek, Malcolm Gladwell, and Martha Stewart. (If all this gets your adrenaline pumping, don’t worry about missing out. Come to next year’s event!)

It was thought leadership on steroids and a revolution against old marketing tactics that “interrupt” rather than “delight” customers, or in the case of higher education, candidates.

INBOUND14 Dharmesh Shah

The old tactics (such as billboards and commercials) simply do not work anymore. They don’t allow brands to engage with prospects in our digital world. They’re expensive. Once you pay for that TV ad or billboard, that money is gone. Vanished. Poof.

INBOUND14 Dharmesh Shah

Enter permission (or inbound) marketing which provides exponential value and endless opportunities.  It’s “about pulling people in by sharing relevant information, creating useful content, and generally being helpful.”

Think blogs, social media, websites, emails. They work for you 24/7. They last forever. They deliver experiences. They can be personalized. They expand reach because they can be shared easily.  When was the last time you forwarded a billboard to a friend?

I thought so.

There’s no shortage of challenges in higher education today. For starters, Harvard Business School innovation guru Clay Christensen said that half of U.S. universities could go bankrupt in 15 years due to the impact of online learning on their business models.

This is the time for big ideas.

As I reflected on four days of caffeinated inspiration, I couldn’t help but think that if higher education institutions could get prospective students as fired up about their universities and programs as much as Hubspot did for attendees at Inbound14, it would be a complete game changer.

Here’s a recap with some memorable quotes from #INBOUND14. What great ideas will you have this year?

LEADERS EAT LAST: WHY SOME TEAMS COME TOGETHER AND OTHERS DON’T BY SIMON SINEK       

Simon Sinek, INBOUND14“In hard times you can’t manage yourself out of a crisis, you have to lead yourself out of a crisis.” 

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KEYNOTE: DAVID & GOLIATH: THE POWER OF THE UNDERDOG BY MALCOLM GLADWELL

Malcolm Gladwell Inbound14

“In order to bringing dramatic change, you have to have the kind of courage to stand up by (yourself) and have a new way of doing things.”

***

“Successful attempts of transformation start with the act of reframing the problem that makes the solution possible.”

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“Foundation of transformation comes from habits and minds. It comes from attitudes.”

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HUBSPOT KEYNOTE

BRIAN HALLIGAN, FOUNDER/CEO & DHARMESH SHAH, FOUNDER/CTO

INBOUND14 Brian Halligan

INBOUND14

@Yelp review of a prison

“There’s been a big shift in buyer/seller relationships. Now the buyer has all the power. Google is now the trusted adviser instead of the sales rep.”

***

 “Instead of always be closing, always be helping.

Instead of sharp elbows, have sharp minds.

Instead of opaque, be transparent.

Instead of being extroverted, be ambiverted.

Instead of being motivated, be motivated.”

INBOUND14 Dharmesh Shah

“Awesome people don’t like average goals.”

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INBOUND14 Dharmesh Shah

“To drive amazing growth, you need to recruit amazing people.”

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DAVID MEERMAN SCOTT | Marketing & Sales Strategistand Bestselling Author

INBOUND14 David Meerman Scott

“Fear is the biggest barrier.”

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SEO TACTICS TO LOVE & TACTICS TO LEAVE

RAND FISHKIN | Wizard of Moz

INBOUND14 Rand Fishkin

“If you don’t have a phenomenal answer to the question, ‘who will amplify this content and why?’ – don’t publish.”

 

THE PERFECT POST

GUY KAWASAKI | Chief Evangelist, Canva

PEG FITZPATRICK | Head of Social Strategy, Canva

INBOUND14 Guy Kawasaki

 “Add drama.”

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“Big pictures. Short posts.”

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MAKE YOUR MARKETING MEMORABLE WITH VISUAL STORYTELLING

EKATERINA WALTER | Author“Think Like Zuck” & Co-Author, “The Power of Visual Storytelling”

INBOUND14 Ekaterina Walter

“Know your audience. How can you add value every day?”

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***

“If you address every single brand concern, you can turn brand ‘hate’ to brand ‘love’. When people are indifferent to your brand, you can’t do anything with it.”

INBOUND14 Ekaterina Walter

“Only 6 percent of info about your brand is put out by marketers.  90+ percent is user-generated content.  Engage advocates to spread the word about your brand.”

***

“Have to be human. Have to connect with people at their passion touchpoints.”

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CONTENT: NOT MORE, BUT MORE RELEVANT

JASON MILLER | Sr. Content Marketing ManagerLinkedIn Marketing Solutions

INBOUND14 LinkedIn

HIGHER ED MEET UP

Ann Oleson | CEO, Converge Consulting

Jay Kelly | President, Converge Consulting

Scott Rief | Director of Online Marketing and Technology, University of California Haas School of Business

Jill Wright | Director of Web Communications, Hinds Community College

Converge Consulting HigherEd

It’s about delivering the right message to the right person at the right time.”

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CONNECTING WITH STUDENTS A WORLD AWAY, AN INTERNATIONAL INBOUND MARKETING STORY

VÉRONIQUE MALAN | Marketing DirectorEcole hoteliere de Lausanne

INBOUND14 Ecole Hoteliere Lausanne

“Start slow and add complexity”

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INBOUND14 Ecole Hoteliere Lausanne

“Think about buyer personas. We went with attitudes such as jetsetter, career-climber.”

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“It’s all about connection.”

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INBOUND14 Ecole Hoteliere Lausanne

Just like 240 years ago, revolutions can still produce remarkable results. What remarkable actions are you ready to take to start your recruitment revolution?

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