Recently, some Buckeye Interactive team members were fortunate to attend the Women in Digital (WID) conference. What an amazing experience it was to spend two days learning from and networking with both local and national women leaders in the digital space.
Buckeye Interactive team member Amara Leggett had something she already knew underscored in a big way.
“Your story is your success. Your challenges are your advantages. As a high school and college graduate at 16 as well as a 17-year-old business owner, I know that my age, race, and gender are what make me unique.”
Some brands have gone through hard times and might be reluctant to talk about these times. But lessons learned in hard times make your brand compelling.
“Some brands don’t realize that their struggles are what not only make them unique but what makes them relatable,” said Amara. “Learning about a brand’s obstacles, how they overcame those obstacles and what they learned is what is inspiring and sets them apart from the rest.”
Image via Women in Digital
Buckeye Interactive team member Tosha Studmire left the conference feeling empowered.
“It’s especially important to find your tribe of women who will uplift, support, inform and guide you. We all can play a part in eliminating blind spots regarding representation, diversity, and inclusion in digital and corporate environments. I love that Women in Digital acknowledges the need to champion and back women in general.”
According to the National Center for Women & Technology, only 26 percent of professional computing occupations in the 2017 U.S. workforce were held by women. The same source stated women held only 17% of Fortune 500 CIO positions in 2017.
“Going to the event was an eye-opener because I was around more than 500 women in the digital space,” said Tosha, “Just knowing you have a community of women dealing with the similar things you are and knowing that they will help you navigate the male-dominated environment is empowering. I was energized being around other women who were actively offering to support and help me.”
Image via Gabriella Garcia of The Follow Shop
In addition to the life lessons taught and learned, team members also brought back digital strategy tips:
- Brands need to take risks and align the company values with how the brand is presented (a great example of this is Nike and their new ad campaign with Colin Kaepernick). If they don’t wade into the water, they are still taking a risk. Nowadays, people are looking for brands that align with their core values. For example, Serena Williams recently got into a disagreement with an umpire at the U. S. Open. To-date, no brand has taken a chance and come out in support of Serena. People (i.e. your potential customers) are looking for companies that stand up as opposed to those who stay silent. Speaking out generates long-term customer loyalty.
- SEO is not immediately gratifying. It takes time and work to see the results of your SEO campaign.
- How does your brand sound? And we do mean actually sound. With the rise in popularity of smart speakers such as Alexa, brands need to understand how they sound via smart speakers. Voice is tied to your SEO success and gives a deeper dimension to brand experience.
- Give value for free. One of the best strategies you can do is to offer gated content – information (a tip sheet, a white paper, a video) that is accessible if someone enters certain contact information. This allows you to build your sales pipeline with those who have expressed a need for the information you offer.
From tactics that we can immediately use to benefit our clients to feeling energized and supported, we think this year’s conference was packed full of information and opportunities to connect with other like-minded women. We are already looking forward to next year’s conference!