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Jennifer Laycock

We're Adding a Keynote!

June 4, 2008   Comments

At the first Small Business Marketing Unleashed conference in Houston, we didn't really have a keynote. Instead, we opened up day one with a bit of a mish-mash from our speakers to try and set the tone for the attitude the attendees should take into the show. Matt Bailey, Wendy Piersall, Matt McGee and myself each spent a few minutes talking about "common sense" online marketing. The idea of learning what you need to know and realizing that you don't have to be an expert at online marketing to see dramatic improvement. The goal was to remind attendees that what we were about to teach them isn't rocket science, but it does require a lot of thought and time to implement.

anita.jpgI walked away from that show feeling like we'd done a nice job of setting the stage, but that we hadn't really capped it off in the right way. I saw so much excitement and passion flowing through the crowd by the time we parted ways on Tuesday, but it made me wonder if we might have set folks up with the passion, without giving them a reminder of the need to run their business as well. After all, anyone who has spent time blogging or Twittering knows how quickly these things can turn into a time sink. They're far more fun than filling out payroll or closing a deal with your next client.

While it's true that online marketing is essential to every small business, it's also true that small businesses have to learn how to walk that fine line of when to market and when to do "business stuff."

That's why I was thrilled to be able to talk Anita Campbell into coming on board for our fall show to do a Tuesday morning keynote. Anita joined us for our first show back in Houston and despite years of email back and forth, it was the first time anyone on our team had met her. (Funny, since she only lives about an hour and a half away from me.) We've been long time fans of Anita's great Small Business Trends site and her radio show.

On top of that, Anita has an amazingly diverse background that makes her uniquely qualified to address these issues for our readers. She's been a c-level exec at a big company and she's been the CEO of her own start-up. She's worked in banking, technology, human resources and marketing. She's about as well-rounded as they come.

Wondering what Anita will be talking about? Here's a snippet from my Small Business Marketing Unleashed keynote announcement post over at Search Engine Guide.

Marketing Mania: Driving Business without Driving Yourself Crazy

Anita's keynote will focus on one of the key points of learning to market as a small business: balancing running your business with promoting it. Since more than half of our attendees came from true small businesses (less than ten employees) we recognize that many of them are faced with the daily challenge of actually running the company. They don't have marketing departments, they ARE the marketing department.

That can make it tough to keep your focus. How do you decide how much value you're getting from your marketing efforts and where do you draw the line on when blogging should give way to picking a new hire or cutting checks to suppliers? How do you avoid getting caught up in the fun that is Twitter and Linked In and Facebook and maximize your time to get it all done?

Honestly? We don't know the answer. That's why we've asked Anita to come and enlighten us (and of course, you!) She'll help us all gain some perspective on the best ways to maximize our marketing efforts while still leaving yourself time to focus on the things we do best; run our businesses!
Anita Campbell...yet another great reason to join us in Columbus, Ohio on September 22nd and 23rd.

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