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Key takeaways: “Everything Has Changed and Nothing Is Different”

UnMarketing's Scott Stratten was a fan favorite at our inaugural Marketing United conference in 2015, so we didn’t think twice about asking him back this year. And his fresh new keynote for 2016 – “Everything Has Changed and Nothing Is Different” – didn’t disappoint.

Here are some of the biggest takeaways from his talk. Or, if you’d prefer to hear from the man (… the myth… the Canadian) himself, scroll down to watch his full presentation!

1. People don’t share things, they share emotion.

Scott opened with the story of Joshie, a stuffed lamb left by a child at a Ritz-Carlton in Florida. When the anxious father contacted the Ritz about getting Joshie back, not only did they find the lamb – their staff also took a series of cute photos featuring Joshie enjoying his extended vacation. Then, they shipped it all back to the family free of charge. Because of his incredible experience, the father shared the photos online… and they went viral.


Scott’s point? Create amazing experiences for your customers, and they’ll do your marketing for you. We trust strangers more than we’ll ever trust brands, and at the end of the day, people respond best to things that stir up an emotional response.

2. You aren’t the storyteller – your customers are.

Note that in the Joshie story, the Ritz didn’t write a blog post about the cute thing they did and post it to Facebook. They created a fantastic customer experience, and the customer was happy to share the story for them.

Psychologists tell us when we see a brand logo, we think of two things:

• Our most recent experience with the brand (or one we’ve heard from someone else)
• Our most extreme experience with the brand (or one we’ve heard from someone else)

Your view of a brand can change based on other people’s experiences, but it rarely changes based on anything the brand itself puts into the world. Marketing campaigns help convert and bring people in the door, for sure. But it’s the stories your CUSTOMERS tell that make a lasting impression.

3. You don’t have to be in EVERY channel.

The availability of so many digital channels and social media platforms puts an intense, unnecessary pressure on marketers to develop a presence in every single one of them. (Snapchat, anyone?)

But just because there are a ton of channels available to the modern marketer doesn’t mean you need to actually use all of them. And you certainly don’t have to drop into every conversation that’s happening; when you’re good, you're on every platform telling everyone about your brand – when you’re great, other people do it for you.

Maintain a strong presence in the channels where people actually want to hear from you, and leave the other ones be. Your B2B business doesn’t need to start creating Vine videos or jump into Facebook Live to stay relevant.

4. Don’t be first – be right, first.

Oftentimes in marketing, it’s all about the view, the like, the retweet – vanity metrics that will drive you to insanity. But what does any of that mean? Who cares about how many views you get on something?

It’s most important that when you do share something, you share responsibly. No matter the size of your audience, you have an obligation to those people to guarantee the accuracy of everything you like, share, or retweet on social media.

If you retweet something, you’re endorsing it.
If you take content with no credit, that’s stealing.

Marketing ethics have fallen by the wayside, and integrity is not a renewable resource. So do everything you can to maintain yours.

This is just a small taste of Scott's keynote. For the full deal (and a few guaranteed belly laughs), view the recording here: