I just completed a fantastic 3-day gathering with roughly 30 amazing marketing consultants from around the world.
I was pretty much blown away by the caliber of consultants (I already had high expectations by the way) and the level of collaboration, generosity and sincere intention of network consultants to share and help their other network partners.
I guess I always kind of had a stereotype of marketing consultants as being stuffy and elitist…in other words, kind of like being “un-coachable” coaches. Not with this group! Everyone there was 100% willing to learn and 100% willing to share their very best tips and advice, in a very friendly / collaborative / generous environment.
This is to me was the ultimate proof of John’s DTM system – he uses his own system to attract ideal consultants – and boy does it show. I see now that the annual gatherings are really important as I felt an instant bond with a huge chunk of the network that really doesn’t come through the same way as connecting online.
I think my fellow consultant Noreen Trudel of Trudel Marketing Group said it best at the end when she said something to the effect of: “I feel like I have my own personal board of directors.”
1. Susan Spaulding of Recalibrate Strategies gave an awesome presentation on how to get a client’s team engaged and take ownership in a marketing plan. Aside from the great content in the plan, I also learned from the way and techniques she used to deliver this presentation. She’s a real pro.
2. Susan’s presentation was a hard act to follow, but Mark Fortune of Fortune Consulting did not disappoint. I learned a really important lesson for my business, because as a web designer and Internet marketer, many times we are tossing out old strategies and starting from scratch – mostly because our service is just a part of an overall marketing plan. Mark gave some great advice on how all of us as marketing consultants are almost always going into a game while it’s being played, rather that preparing for one to start.
3. Kelly Weppler of Weppler, Hernandez & Associates immediately stood out to me as the consultant’s consultant. She not only gave a great presentation on collaboration within the network , but she also lead a fantastic break-out meeting on B2B lead generation and made lots of great contributions throughout the gathering.
4. Jean Hanson of Marketing Systems By Design gave an AWESOME presentation on Cause Marketing. Like I find with John’s books, half the value is learning something new, the other half finding some validation in the methods we are using in own business. In my own business, once a year we build a new website for an established non-profit in need. Not only is the super-rewarding, we get awesome buzz, seo value, social sharing / exposure, and most importantly, we get a chance to impress board members that are often highly influential members of the local business community. But wow, check out Cleaning for A Reason and find out how powerful Cause Marketing can be.
5. Nicole Crozier of Corner Your Market gave a great presentation and examples on how and why to package your services, and great advice on creating your own signature package as a way to differentiate. I thought this was awesome advice, and in addition to leveraging existing DTM packages, I kind of do this with my own business by marketing my own brand of search engine friend coding as Kansas City SEO, and I even take it a step further where I steer price shopping prospects to a checklist of differentiators. But I think I can do more around this concept and props to Nicole C.
6. I had to cut out on Friday 10/17 to attend a parent teacher conference for one of my sons. I really wanted to attend the presentation on “The 5 P’s of Writing a Book” with Debbie DeChambeau of Select Business Marketing. It is so awesome that a group of Duct Tape Marketing Consultants worked together to publish a book: Renewable Referrals. I have a dream to write a book on SEO someday and found this accomplishment inspiring and when you see people in your tribe doing this it makes it seem much more within reach. The group does not know this yet, but I will be stalking them over the next next year or two to get pointers on how to do it. Also, where in the hell is the PowerPoint…I can’t find it on the DTU site(?) lol.
7. I also missed the presentation “Using Collaboration Tools To Help Develop A Marketing Strategy In Record Time” by Debra Mendes and David Smith of Valens Point. Both made great contributions to the group and I am excited to try their online press release service, which on paper looks like an incredible value. Also, Mark Fortune had great things to say about this service as well.
8. John and Dan Kraus of Leading Results lead a really awesome session where he shared how his business handles sourcing, managing and acquiring resources for the various types of talent required to service clients and complete engagements. This session opened up to floor and many of us shared tips, ideas and experience. Justin Sturges of Systemadik noted that this was an incredibly useful session and would like to see a similar session(s) at the next gathering – and pretty much everyone in the room agreed.
9. One of my personal favorite presentations was by Podcast master Kevin Jordan of Red Point Marketing Consultants. As a guy that doesn’t listen to podcasts, this presentation was a real eye opener and very convincing. Because of Kevin, starting a podcast will be one of my very first action items and I can’t wait to do one of Kevin’s shows.
10. We had another session where the group completed a spreadsheet of “must have” tools that they / we all actually use in our business. That was a cool session lead by Ann Gusiff of Gusiff Marketing Group….really looking forward to see that spreadsheet.
11. It goes without saying that our fearless leader John Jantsch lead many great sessions and several presentations. I think he may have mentioned something about Rainmaker too.
I am sure I missed someone or something and will probably add to this post later in the week.
Be sure to read my post about guest blog posting within the Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network.
Can’t wait for Denver 2015!!!