DIM Summit 2014: The Challenge to Expand Your Digital Influence

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I’m glad to join for the third time the Digital Influencers Marketing Summit organized by Digital Filipino. Held last Saturday, September 13 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City, the DIM Summit 2014 is a forum to learn from bloggers and influencers who have made a positive impact in their field.

Sharing here the most important lessons I needed to learn that day:

1. Getting Ready for the ASEAN Integration

One of Anton Diaz’s (of Our Awesome Planet) influencer power tips to succeed in the upcoming ASEAN integration is to “assert our Filipino-ness globally.” I think our uniqueness as Filipinos is what makes us stand out globally, what makes us interesting to non-Filipinos.  We should produce more positive content about the Philippines and being Filipino to make our country, and us, Filipinos, a permanent fixture in the world stage. Rather than being a worldwide trending topic only when there’s a catastrophic natural disaster.

2. Experiences and Stories Worth Sharing

Jonji Gonzales, Apple Alison Perez and Jeoff Solas spoke about creating experiences and stories worth sharing. If there’s no perceived difference between brands, most people will always go for the lowest priced product or service. What drives consumers to be loyal to a brand, or at least to be a repeat customer is a unique, satisfying experience that’s also worth sharing to one’s social media circle, or maybe even to the entire online world.

3. Creativity and Resourcefulness in Marketing Campaigns

Apple shared her experience working with limited resources for a tourism campaign for a local government unit (LGU), while Jeoff, since he’s  connected to an international hotel chain, would have, I suppose, a higher budget. Contrasting budgets, but both achieving success in their digital marketing campaigns, in their aim to reach out to a wider audience. With this, we can see a universal truth at work: “If there’s a will, there’s a way.” But I like the Tagalog version better: “Kung gusto may paraan, kung ayaw maraming dahilan.”

4. Thought Buzz and Metrics

“Listening unearths information that makes you want to learn more.”

Rianna Roces Trinidad of ThoughtBuzz shared a fascinating study of the Filipino youth’s conversations in social media about fast moving consumer goods or FCMG. As expected, food items dominate the Pinoys’ social media buzz (hello, #foodporn). It was interesting to learn what products and brands are most talked about online.

Many of the other speakers spoke of the importance of metrics, or stats to measure the success of a digital marketing campaign. With the various tools now available, we can easily gain valuable insights about our products and services, what we need to improve on, and what we can do to improve.

5. Digital Marketing + Traditional Marketing

The panel discussion on Promoting and Selling Real Estate Properties Online showed that integrating Digital Marketing efforts with Traditional Marketing practices produces valuable rewards for real estate practitioners, especially in terms of lead generation.

Face to face marketing cannot be replaced wholly by digital marketing because of the trust issue. Knowing what works in your industry or target market is key.

6. Focus on Building Long-Term Relationships

“Online communities allow customers to get closer to businesses and businesses closer to their customers.”Lace Llanora of Vanilla Digital

Building sustainable online communities requires making an effort to establish meaningful relationships both online and offline. One-time transactional interactions with clients or prospects do not create positive impressions about a brand. To remain loyal to a brand, people want to be assured that they will be taken care of for the long term.

 

My main take away from the event is to find a worthy cause to promote, and to step out of my comfort zone and challenge myself as a blogger and content creator to expand my influence outside my small circle of family and friends.

DIM Summit 2014

Too bad that a lot of the other speakers had only a limited time (5 minutes!) to talk about their experiences in digital marketing. I admire the speakers’ willingness to share their thoughts and experiences, and to be mentors, even indirectly only through the summit, to the aspiring and other practicing digital marketers. To all the speakers, thank you!

Also, a big shout-out of congratulations to the winners of the Top 10 Emerging Influential Bloggers of 2014:

Top 10 Emerging Influential Blogs for 2014

I remember deciding to attend my first DIM Summit mainly because the location was in Thunderbird Resort in San Fernando, La Union. And here I am, attending the third one, because it gives so much value.

Thank you to Digital Filipino, to Ms. Janette Toral and her team, for giving us another learning opportunity, and congratulations for the successful DIM Summit 2014.

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