Last week we hosted the first Outreach Marketing Summit. And I say first because it was so awesome that there will be more virtual conferences from GroupHigh to follow.

An entire day was full of online presentations by some of the top thought leaders in the digital marketing and PR world. Over 1,500 people tuned in to learn about influencers, advocates and improving word of mouth marketing strategies.

If you check out the hashtag #outreachmarketing you’ll see that the crowd was interactive and the sentiment throughout was very positive.

I was blown away with the different ideas, advice and strategies floating around all day. The topics were diverse and thus by the end of the day my head was full of new ideas and tips to apply to my own outreach marketing strategy and based on the feedback I heard from conference attendees, I wasn’t the only one with a full brain.

In the event you missed it, all presentations can be viewed here, so don’t feel left out!

Since it was such an impactful conference I want to share with you the three takeaways the folks here at GroupHigh walked away with after The Outreach Marketing Summit with a few highlights but I definitely recommend you check it out for yourself!

Ongoing Relationships Hold the Most Value

There seems to be a shift from traditional campaign mentality to a digital strategy that embraces the value of ongoing relationships with social influencers.

Lee Odden from TopRank Marketing, emphasized the fact that consumers are in social media and content shock. Meaning there is an overload of information that brands and social influencers are emitting in to the digital realm so marketers need to take a step back and move toward a more thought out strategy that emphasizes trust.

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While Lee Odden provided research and strategies, Mary Eitel discussed exactly how she implemented a blogger outreach program that consists of ongoing relationships for Char-Broil.

Some of her advice includes: do extensive research on the bloggers you work with, commit to each other and if the relationship doesn’t work out—be conscious about discontinuing the relationship so you don’t have bitter bloggers!

From research to strategy to case study, we even got a blogger’s perspective from Crosby Noricks from PR Couture. She touched on long term relationships which contributed to a well-rounded perspective on how brands really should implement a strategy that nurtures relationships instead of working with influencers for a one time mention.

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Influencer Identification is Half the Battle

No wonder there are so many tools out there to help marketers and communications professionals identify influencers, advocates and people to add to the sphere that surrounds their brand for their outreach marketing strategy.

After watching all the presentations I had the realization that finding the right people at the right time to align your brand with is arguably the hardest part of an epic outreach marketing strategy.

Bryan Kramer of PureMatter gave a presentation on smart social listening to identify the right influencers and emphasized the value of choosing the right monitoring technology and really tuning in to the social sphere instead of blindly reaching out to people who you think might be a good fit with your brand. Listen in to the blogosphere and social world strategically so that you know everyone you reach out to is a good fit with your brand.

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Chris Abraham’s presentation focused on the value of long tail blogger outreach—reaching out to bloggers at scale instead of focusing on the “a list” people. He thoroughly discussed his strategy and talked about different tools available to identify the right people to reach out as it can be a lengthy process.

Chris Abraham also emphasized the value of identifying where influencers for your brand or that you’re interested in are the most active and reaching out to them on that respective channel.

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Travis Wright not only taught us how to internet bro fist but he also weighed in on the value of optimizing the way you identify the right people at the right time for your brand.

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He gave detailed advice on different identification tools and strategic processes such as Facebook graph search, Little Bird, HootSuite, BuzzSumo and GroupHigh.

If You Only Take Away One Thing…

If attendees only left The Outreach Marketing Summit with one thing in mind I hope that it was that outreach marketing is a specific blend of identifying the right people to reach out to and once these people have been identified, it’s crucial to nurture all relationships instead of reaching out to people for a one time brand mention.

Stephanie Scott from American Airlines summed it up perfectly with her closing slide of her presentation.

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The presentations I mentioned to highlight my biggest takeaways only scratch the surface of what an awesome day April 8th was. We also had Laura Fitton from HubSpot talking about Twitter relations, Katie Paine talking about measurement and many more so make sure you handpick a few to watch!