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Nottingham Digital Summit 2019: The Highlights Reel


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17 MIN

Nottingham Digital Summit 2019: The Highlights Reel


  • You should always listen to the data. Unless common sense says otherwise.
  • Each part of your brand, no matter how small, should march to the same drum beat.
  • AI can be implemented in your business right now – it’s not a far off thing of the future.
  • Keep track of who’s talking about you and engage with them.

Last week, some of the Adzooma team headed to Nottingham’s own Digital Summit. As the Midland’s biggest digital marketing event, it brought together all the best creative minds for talks, networking and a great day.

Better yet, the whole event was a charity fundraiser with all the money being used to support the Samaritans of Nottingham. The day raised a grand total of £20,257 which is great news for all the people it will help.

We thought it would be good to hear about some of our favourite talks from the day from different teams.

So, if you missed out and want to know the highlights, carry on reading.

This is the image that shows how much was raised throughout the day.

Our Top Picks

The Data Is Always Right… Until It’s Wrong

The day started strong with a talk by Billy Williams from Distinction on customer experience.

The first part of his talk focused on learning from data and was really interesting for those who like to use the numbers to back things up – like me.

Anyone who wants to see success knows that data should form the basis of any decision making.

But data alone is not enough. After all, your customers aren’t faceless data points. You need to pay attention to the whole customer journey as much as you need to learn from the data.

Billy used a great quote, taken from Jeff Bezos, to illustrate his point:

“The thing I have noticed is that when the anecdotes and the data disagree, the anecdotes are usually right. There is something wrong with the way that you are measuring it.”

This was something that stuck in my mind throughout the rest of the day.

It really is all too easy to become consumed with what the data is saying and forget to use basic logic. What do you want your customers to do? Where do you want them to go?

Your customer journey should be easy to take. You don’t need numbers to spell the basics out for you.

So, don’t let data lead you up the garden path just because there’s a lot of it. Use your intuition and work out what makes sense for your users.

Billy Williams from distinction.

Telling The Right Story

Charlotte from our Design team was also a huge fan of the same talk by Billy Williams, in particular, the half about storytelling.

The way Billy explained things were like this:

Your brand message should come through in everything you do.

So, think of it as a single-story arc that ties everything together.

Take the TV show, Friends, for example.

The overarching question is always “will Ross and Rachel get together?”

This is asked in every season, every episode, often in most scenes.

The same should be true for your brand. In every single thing you do, big or small, the message should be the same.

Whether they land on your website, social page, piece of software, email, whatever it may be, your design, tone of voice and overall message needs to be consistent.

Otherwise, people will think they’ve got the wrong show.

AI And The Future

Adzooma’s own Sal Mohammed also stole the stage with his talk on automation and AI.

Our Very own ex googler Sal Mohammed taking centre stage.

First, Sal kicked things off with some examples that really show how promising the future of AI looks to be.

For instance, AI is already able to predict with 70% accuracy whether someone will turn up to their hospital appointment or not.

AI can even find Wally in a “Where’s Wally?” book…

Better still, you already see AI at work in your daily lives, whether you realise it or not: 80% of Netflix screen time is driven by AI recommendations.

After outlining how AI is an important part of the future – it’s due to add £13 trillion to the global economy by 2030 – Sal moved on to how to integrate AI into your business.

As it becomes increasingly prominent, you want to make sure you’re not left behind. But, working out how to implement the huge possibilities of AI into your day to day business can seem overwhelming.

Sal covered the different ways of implementing AI: build something yourself, outsource it, or use a ready-made platform. Of course, Adzooma fits into the last category!

AI can help across any sector, whether you’re in marketing, sales, customer service… There are loads of great platforms out there.

Social Media And The Data

Our Social Media Executive’s favourite had to be the one by Kieran S-Lawler from Hallam.

Kieran during his talk

This talk focused on the data behind social media and covered:

  1. Perfect personas
  2. Split testing
  3. Track movement
  4. Product development
  5. Tips

Kieran started his talk in a unique way to get his message across.

He asked the audience to stand if they were active social media users. Of course, 99% off the room stood up. Then, he asked people to stay standing if they had been on social media the morning of the event – not a single person sat down.

Next, Kieran asked those who remembered the first ad they’d seen that day to stay standing – only 1% of the room did.

Kieran’s point was that the digital world is so competitive. It’s really hard to get people to remember you.

Those that were left standing remembered their first ad because the brand or product was rememberable to them. If you’re not standing out, then your competition has more chance of being seen than you do.

He also talked about how you shouldn’t be afraid of turning your ads off early if they’re underperforming – there’s no use wasting your budget. Instead, pump your funds into your best performing ad.

Finally, Kieran left us with the knowledge that 90% of people who talk about your business dont follow you. They do, however, often hashtag words so you can find them that way. You should make the most of tracking tools such as Sprout Social to keep an ear out for what people are saying about you.

Until Next Year…

Across most of the talks, a common theme this year was one thing: the importance of data.

Much like the talks at SearchLeeds highlighted, collecting the right data and using it in the right ways is essential. You won’t get far without it.

If you’ve found these highlights interesting, make sure you get yourself a ticket for next year’s event!

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