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thoughts

DOYO Live 2017: The Sequel

Like The Empire Strikes Back and The Godfather 2, the sequel was better than the original. In it's second year, DOYO Live rolled deep with content, connections and creativity.

Hey! It's my logo!

Hey! It's my logo!

This year, not only was I an attendee, I sat on the planning committee for the conference and also led a breakout session. I had the unique view of seeing the conference from three different angles, and I am so proud of the work that Dennis and the rest put into this conference to A. Pull it off and to B. Make it better than last year, which is always a goal when you're hosting conferences like this.

Content

We had two keynote speakers, three breakout sessions with seven tracks each and a thought leadership panel. It was basically a "choose-your-own-adventure" of marketing topics throughout the day. We kicked off the conference on Wednesday night with three, deep dive workshops that were led by Dennis Schiraldi (DOYO Live Founder), Deanna Fusillo (Sassy Girl Media) and Nate Riggs (NR Media Group). Each workshop was two hours long; I sat in on Deanna's and took away a ton of great information that I could immediately apply to B2 Graphic Services (my side hustle).

Connections

I met a lot of great marketers and small business owners this year at DOYO Live. BSquared confession: networking events make me nervous. I don't know if it's because of this digital age that we live in, but it takes me a while to warm up in these situations and just go and introduce myself to some random person. But when I do, stand back. It was really nice to connect with other marketers and designers and just "talk shop" with them. Because at work when I start getting nerdy with marketing and design-speak, my co-workers look at me like a deer in headlights.

Stopped for a picture with fellow breakout session (and gym buddy) Jonathon Pogact from Marketo

Stopped for a picture with fellow breakout session (and gym buddy) Jonathon Pogact from Marketo

The other really awesome thing I got out of the networking is validation. I know that's going to sound weird, but it's true. Sometimes self-doubt can creep in and make you question your talent (just me?). There was a moment during the Wednesday night kick-off party when Deanna Fusillo called me over to a group that she was talking to and said "Becky, come check out this logo - she's really creative and good with fonts." It was empowering and reminded me that I ACTUALLY do know what I'm talking about and there are people who appreciate that.

Creativity

Our morning keynote, Debra Jasper from Mindset Digital, had a ton of information on cutting through all of the clutter in a digital world to truly communicate, person to person. She had some really great tips on writing emails, blog posts and developing presentations (her deck for the 45 minute keynote had over 300 slides and she hit the clicker over 1,000 times). My big takeaway from her talk was that people tune into the informal and that we need to taylor our marketing and content efforts around that thought. Debra also had some great insights on improving your LinkedIn profile (most of which I've implemented).

Since I was on the planning committee, I pulled double-duty and managed a room for the afternoon breakout sessions. I watched Director of Content Marketing for Concentrek, Laura Hanley, give a great presentation on content repurposing. Laura dropped knowledge bombs. She provided a lot of great information for small businesses to execute a content marketing strategy without a large budget. I snagged a copy of the presentation as soon as she put it on SlideShare.

Michael Pontikos and I tag-teamed the next two breakout sessions centered around design, working with a designer and some tips and tricks for setting up profile pictures and cover photos across social media platforms. I was nervous that I wouldn't be able to talk for 45 minutes; not really sure why, I could have waxed poetic on why you shouldn't ask your designer to put your logo into Microsoft Word ...

To wrap up the conference, Brian Blasko was our afternoon keynote and his presentation was titled, "Cruising Through Life at 35 MPH." It was high energy, insightful and hilarious. He kept everyone engaged and provided a wonderful wrap up to a day full of marketing information.

My Key Take-Aways

  • The landscape is much more conversational and brands need to taylor their communication styles to reach their audience; seeing always wins
  • Effective content marketing doesn't have to break the bank
  • Know what your strengths are and don't be afraid to leverage those to achieve your goals (and if you're a lady, take a compliment!)
  • Jai Jackson is definitely a better break-dancer than Dennis Schiraldi. However, the dark horse, who came out of nowhere, was most definitely Jim Komara. He's got the moves.

It was a great day and a half of learning and connecting with other fellow marketers. My hats off to Dennis for creating this vehicle for not only local marketers and business owners to be a part of, but others from the surrounding areas. We're showing what the Mahoning Valley has to offer and I think the future looks very bright.