Wow! It’s hard to believe the 2014 DMA Conference is already wrapping up. It’s been a busy three days of seminars, keynotes and meetings with clients and prospects. The highlight of the conference for me is always the opportunity to spend time with our great customers, learning more about their marketing plans for the coming year and what services they will need from IWCO Direct to make those plans successful. Talking with customers and prospects in our booth, we heard more than once, “this is exactly what we need.” We heard it most often when people were standing in front of the display case that featured our “Fight Campaign Fatigue” examples.
I agree with my colleague, Tom Hexamer, that Monday’s keynote was one of the most interesting sessions, especially because of the conversations it sparked. The range of expectations about what Magic Johnson would talk about was fascinating and seemed to be equally divided between those who thought he would focus on community involvement and those who, despite the description, thought he would talk about sports. The actual content included many anecdotes that prove Magic is the consummate businessman (e.g. never be late, always prepare, over-deliver, listen more than you talk).
Although attendance appeared to be slightly lower than last year, that didn’t necessarily translate into reduced traffic to our booth. The marketers we spoke with were engaged and had lots of questions about our marketing services and digital offerings. Those conversations with customers and prospects told us that marketers are focusing on results and looking for ways to make their campaigns more effective.
Our discussions about strategy, data and creative confirmed our decision to expand the scope of marketing services we offer through our Proprietary Intelligence model. Marketers are looking for solutions that are relevant, responsible and real-time. We need to keep this in mind as we develop new products and services. One of the most intriguing statements came during the “Modern Reality of One-to-One” panel discussion. Ian Di Tullio, Director of Loyalty Marketing for Air Canada said it best, “The Super Brain has attention-deficit disorder issues. This means we still need human intuition to discover the best answers.”
Overall, this year’s conference was stronger and had more energy than in previous years. John Woodstock, DMA’s new VP Sponsorships and Exhibit Sales, is bringing new energy, ideas and common sense that has us excited about DMA 2015 in Boston. We’ll see you there!
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