Zenith Social Media Conference! Behind The Scenes With Joanna Lord, Keynoter

Posted in Interviews, Zenith SocialCon

Joanna Lord. What can you say about her? She’s pretty much one of the smartest, sweetest, sassiest gals this side of the Interwebz. Currently serving as CMO of BigDoor, a Seattle startup, her résumé also includes things like independent consultant, entrepreneur, innovator, creator, analyzer, coffee enthusiast (that’s putting it mildly), and borderline insomniac (perhaps attributable to the previous line-item). She’s steeped in the full spectrum of digital marketing, from PPC to SEO, PR to Social, and everything in between. Toldja. Smart.

The city of Duluth is jazzed to have Joanna join us for this month’s Zenith Social Media Marketing Conference. In addition to leading a fabulous keynote*, she’ll also join fellow industry powerhouses for a live social media clinic. Prior to the main show, aimClear had the chance to share a little Q&A with the lovely Ms. Lord. Read on for a peek into what makes her tick.

*Hold up! Let’s take a look at that keynote description, first:

Using Social Media to Build Customer Loyalty
Customer acquisition is only half the battle, today’s social ecosystem enables marketers to build engagement and loyalty from the get go. Joanna will cover how you can use the platforms to connect with potential customers, build brand awareness, gain loyalty and drive customers to be advocates. Joanna will cover common tools, as well as challenges and KPIs to be aware of.

Not-to-be-missed gold! Okay, now on with the show.

| aimClear: Joanna! Thanks for being here today. Let’s start off with the basics. Your professional evolution is fascinating. Please share with us your current job title, description, and the amazing winding path that brought you to this place.

joanna-lordJoanna Lord: I’m currently kicking off my new gig as CMO of BigDoor, a Seattle startup that creates customer loyalty platforms for brands dedicated to engaging their customers in personal and fun ways.

Before that I’ve worked at a number of startups, founded my own company, and consulted for a number of years. I’ve spent a decade in online marketing and tried to expose myself to all sorts of channels and different types of management and process. I find that our industry moves so fast, and I am so excited about the shifts, I want to try my hand at as many as I can.

Prior to getting into startup tech, I thought I would end up in academia teaching online marketing to students, but instead I’ve found a way to make it very much part of my job through internal evangelism, blogging and conference speaking.

I also serve on an advisory board of a startup in Australia, and I’m currently launching my first mobile app ISITaYES. You could say I like to stay busy, but I think that is just the norm in our world. That’s just one of the many reasons I love being a part of this industry. As a group we are always trying to learn more and build new things. That’s what it all comes down to for me. Learning and building.

| aC: Awesome. So, how has your background as a direct response marketer help lend perspective to your current role?

JL: Oh it has been huge. I feel like my background in direct response and paid marketing has helped me stay incredibly KPI and budget driven. All marketing channels pay attention to data and the dollars, but that specific branch of things lives and dies by it. I feel like I’ve been able to turn the conversation back to revenue and growth time and time again, which has been both useful and challenging.

Over the years, I’ve seen “the other side” of things, and now a great deal of time is spent on inbound marketing and engagement driven channels. With exposure to both, I now think very holistically. How can I use both outbound and inbound channels to create the most valuable and holistic lifecycle campaign?

With retargeting and social paid advertising taking off, marketers are seeing a revolution – full person marketing. We have to be where they need us, offer real value, catch their attention, make the sell, get them engaged, build loyalty and leave them with a high five at the end of it.

I think my background, combined with my current efforts has helped me jump on that bandwagon sooner and more completely.

| aC: Totally. I dig it. Okay… top three ways social media has changed the planet from your perspective, go!

JL: OMG. Favorite question ever.

1: We can now stay connected on a global level with those we love. Say what you want about the backlash of technology but I am able to watch my nephews grow up in Vermont thanks to social. I can FaceTime from the road, and get random picture updates from my dad. Social has given us the ability to love more people and show that love often. I’m so thankful for that.

2: Inspiration abounds. Social media has given us the ability to share what inspires us and inspire others. We can discover new people and new ideas fast than ever. Inspiring videos, photos, quotes and stories now have a vehicle to spread far and wide, and it has literally changed us all for the better in my opinion.

3: We are more empowered to live our dream life than ever. Social media has made learning easier than ever. It’s broken down barriers around knowledge dissemination. With social we are now empowered to learn new things, blog/share stories about our growth, and get real time feedback. I think this medium has empowered many of us to make risky moves because we have a social community to support us. It’s amazing.

| aC: Hang on. I need a tissue. Really moving stuff, Joanna. And totally on the level. Alright, enough of the mushy stuff. Confession time: 3 non-industry websites you visit each day. GO.

JL: 1. Does Pinterest count as a non-industry website? Because, I definitely spend way too much time on there. 2. Pretty much anything that sells beautiful things – Gilt, Fab, Ideeli, Poshmark, and so on and so forth. I love fashion and enjoy wandering the latest in design via these ecommerce curation sites. 3. Dribbble, Forrrst, Threadless. I know those are related to our industry, but I love sites with communities of designers. At the end of a long day, I just want to wander the web and see beautiful, new things.

| aC: Ummm, I personally follow you on Pinterest… and have never seen such extreme niche board organization, like, ever. Brava, lady, brava. Moving on… at the Zenith Social Media conference, you’ll be participating on the Social Media Marketing “Live” Clinic. What’s some of your favorite advice for people ready to get serious about social media? What’s the next step beyond tweeting and posting to Facebook?

JL: I am beyond stoked for this clinic. I think people that are excited about social and ready to explore fun ways to use it in connecting with their communities and customers are ahead of the game.

Some general advice would be to test the heck out of everything. Don’t feel constrained to try executing the way you did in channels past, but literally rethink how you frame a story, what images you use, the way you target, and the way you engage.

Don’t get caught up in using the medium “the way everyone else does.” Rethink, reframe, and make it personal. We now have more demographic information than ever before, and we are better storytellers than marketers in the past. Social media is all about being valuable and being found before anyone even knows they need you. Get creative in how you mix up that funnel.

It’s a whole new…super social and fun…world.

| aC: Lighting-round wrap-up! Favorite cuisine, vacation spot, and adult beverage, GO!

JL: Mexican food, Austin, and a margarita…you may notice a theme ;) .

| aC: Sí, señorita. Thanks so much for your time today, Joanna! Safe travels, dear friend, and we’ll be seeing you soon!

Feature photo credit: www.sarahlovrien.com