With ICEEfest now over, which were some of the insights and trends regarding Digital Marketing that struck us this year? Three ThinkDigital executives & 1 keynote speaker share their views. 

By Dannos Tsakalos, Marketing Manager, TDG

I have this theory that every presentation is like a movie. If it's not worth it, people will forget it. If, on the other hand, the speaker offers interesting or even challenging content, attendees will remember it. As it is the case with great movies. We will wake up the day after and the story will be stuck in our mind. And we will be eager to discuss it, to spread the word about it, to cogitate about it over and over again...

So, one valuable "lesson", in my humble opinion, is as Lee Odden (TopRank Online Marketing), that "Facts tell, but Stories sell". Be a storyteller. Share compelling content that will have people on their toes and will "force" them to get back for more.

But we need the right mentality in order to achieve this. That is, we need to realize a rather commonsensical, yet often forgotten truth: Stop focusing on B2B & B2C – or“Business to Credit Cards”, as keynote speaker Enon Landenberg (sFBI) likes to say.

For, no matter the industry, the market the medium or the platform, Marketing is conducted between human beings. H2H, that’s right. It’s all about human relationships. It’s about showing our audience that we care about them; that we listen to their needs and we strive to cater them; that we want to -establish long-term relationships built on trust and mutual respect.

Therefore, as Chris Clarke (DigitasLBi) challenged us during his captivating talk, we, as marketers, have two options:

a)      Getting people to buy stuff they don’t need with money they don’t have, to make themselves feel better about the fact that they work all the time and aren’t famous.

b)      To add value richness and purpose to products and services, so economic dignity grows and we all get happier.

Now, what’s the path we are going to follow? 

"Creativity, or Data, that is the question"

By Andrei Ursuleanu, Sales Director, ThinkDigital Romania

For years, Advertising used to focus on one direction only and that was touching and -influencing consumers’ reactions, needs and trust in brands. That was the case no matter the method, the condition and the virtual or not so virtual ‘fight’ for pole position in every decision a consumer makes. Well, beating your competition and catching the eye of the consumer is still the ultimate scope these days.

There were two fronts at ICEEfest displaying their arsenal. Creativity on one hand, which teaches us that what you tell the consumer, and how you tell it, is more important than the method or the planning. And then there is also data/ automatization, which insists that, to be effective, we should be starting any campaign proposal with numbers and researches as its core.

You know what, though? In order to survive in the digital arena, we actually need both creativity and data. Not just one or the other. Because it is the mix of creative communication, powerful media tools and data that gives us the opportunity to play a flawless game.

At ICEEfest’s keynote presentations and panel discussions, the consumer was placed/seen as the main trophy to conquer and that’s exactly the main challenge for advertisers. It’s ok to think like this. However, in a time when the average consumer suffers from attention deficit, if we want to reach our audience and engage with it, we have to sharpen and take advantage of all the communication skills and tools we have at our disposal. We need to become both scientists and artists. Leonardo da Vinci, anyone?

"At home with the tablet"

By Petya Panduleva, Senior Account Manager, ThinkDigital Bulgaria

A statistic that was mentioned several times at ICEEfest and stuck with me the most was that 80% of tablets are not taken out of home, but are being used as a second screen, perhaps complementing TV.  This, along with the stat that almost 2 out of 3 Facebook users in Bulgaria are connected via mobile devices, shows that the Age of Mobile is here and now.

The fact that tablets are mostly used at home is a clear indication of how popular multiscreening is these days, while it highlights the power we have as marketers of engaging with users on the second screen – be it with something different than our TVC or with information that complements what we offer on TV as a brand.

Mobile should be essential when planning campaigns and one reason is because it enables us to target very precisely. On Facebook Mobile, for instance, we have the same targeting options as on desktop, which means that we can show the right message, to the right people at the right time. And, as I am sure you already know, if our message is engaging, we are on a sure way to success.

So, here they are. Three different opinions. Which is the one that resonates with you the most?

P.S. That being said, the organizers of a conference are like the hosts of a party. They enjoy it (a lot), but miss most of the real action because they are those who are always buzzing around, making sure guests are having a great time and things are running smoothly.

So, since -to be honest with you- we only caught bits and pieces at ICEEfest, I thought it would be a good idea to include the view of Lee Odden, one of this year's very best keynote speakers! Enjoy his piece entitled "Lessons learned about Storytelling & Content Marketing".

* "Are we human, or are we...

The Killers - Human (live) by iConcerts