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Lessons from Inbound 2013: Don't Just Lean In, Lean Back

As one would expect, much of Hubspot's Inbound Marketing Summit 2013 was about content marketing, nurturing leads, and optimizing the sales process. However, amidst all the marketing speak there was a profound recurring message about restoring a connection with yourself and your goals, underscored by Arianna Huffington's keynote. Here is a recap of that and more, which naturally does not to capture the extent of knowledge and innovation that permeated from each session. Social Media According to Nielson data, 70% of people trust a complete stranger more than they trust an advertisement. We are in an attention economy and people are tired of brands that just talk to the talk. So the question becomes how can brands walk the walk?  As Ben Grossman, Senior Strategist at Jack Morton Worldwide, shared; social media is where 'the rubber meets the road'? and brands live as a verb ' engaging with consumers in a two-way dialogue and becoming relevant to them rather than shouting at them. To do so requires a strategic approach that leverages audience insights, relevant data, a community before business mindset, knowing the platform, being on the way, not in the way, sharing expertise, and inviting influencers in. Of course Ben articulated each aforementioned practice much more eloquently and in depth so you can view his full presentation here. Content Development Beth Dunn, a HubSpot writer, enlightened the audience on how to write like a god in what HubSpot calls a BOLD talk ' 20 minutes or less of pure riveting, educational, and challenging wisdom. As such, this will be a bold synopsis ' short and sweet, but enlightening nonetheless. People frequently wonder how to become better at anything and the answer is almost always practice. Beth took the ambiguity of practice and turned it into a consumable and actionable thought. You want to become a better writer, write every day, write like crap every day, but write every day. Eventually, just in the same way that if you ran everyday you would get faster and run longer, you will write better. It's not about writing something perfect every time it's about the process that gets you there. Leadership The chair, president, and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, Arianna Huffington, took the stage to address fearless leadership from politics to the boardroom and when she mentioned she would have added bedroom into that mix, she captivated the audience for the duration. Among her candor, she left the audience inspired to recharge with the following: We are all walking as if we are running out of time, slow down. If you don't intend to fail, you don't intend to succeed. Failure is a stepping stone to success. Decide what you are going to put your energy into and do it with clarity. To expect a culture that is always on creates a culture of burnout. Burnout is a disease of our civilization. The only thing we are in control of is our attitude toward the things happening to us. It's not just about leaning in, it's about leaning back. Recharging is critical to growth. Sleep is an essential leadership tool. (Something she believes in so much so that there are two nap rooms in the Huffington Post offices). HubSpot's Inbound certainly had a wealth of knowledge to share, which, as mentioned, cannot be condensed into one short blog post, but I have a feeling that while you're reading this some other content marketers out there are blogging about the insight and lessons learned at #Inbound13 so give it a search. In closing, I'd just like to say sorry to Justin Bieber because Arianna Huffington is definitely my new idol.

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