What a great week at this year’s Marketo Summit in Las Vegas.
100+ marketing sessions, 6,000+ marketers, and a whole bunch of parties made this event one to remember. Here are some of my top takeaways.
1) New Marketo Summit Venue: Vegas
After years of being hosted in San Francisco, Marketo switched gears and brought 6,000 marketers to sin city at the MGM Grand. Vegas is like nowhere else, meaning attendees had plenty of post event choices.
The MGM itself is BIG meaning there is a ton of walking. Some people never left the premises as the MGM has everything you need in one place.
2) Hot Technology and Marketo Trends
Here are a few trends I saw that you might want to keep an eye on for the next year.
- Orion is More than a Constellation – With so many new data points across various channels, Marketo needs to get faster to support the “Internet of Things.” Orion is the code word for Marketo’s multi-year initiative to make the system up to 100X faster.
Marketo reports that in 2015, there were 20 billion emails sent and 500 billion activities logged.
- Account-Based Marketing – Finding ways to take the discussions beyond the lead, account-based marketing is hot. It seemed like account-based marketing made its way into almost every session and exhibitor marketing message. Marketo even announced some new account-based marketing features coming soon.
- Analytics and Predictive Modeling – Marketers are getting smarter and the requirements around insights are getting greater. Many attendees were trying to gain new ways to improve attribution insights and create predictive models to help their business.
- Engaging Content – White papers are so 2014. Companies are getting more creative with interactive content and video. Along this concept, Marketo announced some new predictive content capabilities to help marketers deliver more relevant content.
Initial look at Marketo Predictive Content
Initial look at Marketo ABM
3) The Marketo Summit Parties Rocked
To blow off a little steam, there was plenty of post session activity. Here they are in chronological order.
Mambo (Mon 7-9 pm)
On Monday, Elixiter kicked off the event with a welcome reception at Mambo.
Advocate Mixer (Tues 5-7 pm)
On Tuesday, Marketo held a small gathering for Marketo advocates in the conference center.
Wet Republic with DJ Jazzy Jeff (and Will Smith) (Tues 7-10 pm)
On Tuesday, DJ Jazzy Jeff led Everstring’s party at MGM’s Wet Republic with over 2,000 people. Will Smith even reunited with his old buddy to entertain the crowd. Check out the video below of Will Smith pumping out the tunes.
Lily Champagne Splash (Tues 9-1 am)
Down the street on Tuesday, party goers rocked it out at Lily at the Bellagio. DemandGen CEO lead the entertainment by jumping behind the DJ controls.
Get Chilled Party (Weds 7-9 pm)
On Wednesday, RevEngine Marketing kicked off festivities by co-hosting the coolest party at the Marketo Summit at the minus5 ice bar along with Knak, Leadspace and rybbon. Thanks to everyone who attended.
Hakkasan Party (Weds 9-12 am)
After chilling out at minus5, party goers headed over to Marketo’s signature event at world famous Hakkasan, a five-floor dance bar.
4) The Ecosystem is Growing
If Marketo is your Iphone, the partners are the Apps that enrich that platform. The digital marketing technology market is exploding and the vendor show case was hot with over 100 solutions.
Traffic was heavy during the breaks indicating marketers are showing great interest in expanding their stack.
5) Speakers were Awesome
Will Smith spoke about being fearless and persistent. What really resonated with me is his philosophy about doing what you love and helping others. If you concentrate on your passions, the financial benefits will come later. In my own life, I write a lot and try to share knowledge as much as I can with fellow marketers and all of our readers. I don’t get paid for that but it sometimes brings in new business on the RevEngine Marketing part of the house.
Rachel Platten talked about how to always believe in what you are doing. Early in her career, she was her own team and had to do everything. Through hard work, she now has a huge team that contributes to her ongoing success.
From Matt Heinz to Scott Brinker, numerous thought leaders shared their vision. We sat down with several of them to get their thoughts on the state of marketing. Look for those video interviews over the next few months.
Sanjay Dholakia sits down with Will Smith
Other Random Thoughts
- Holy cow, Vegas is expensive for food and drinks. Two slices of pizza and a water cost nearly $20 at the food court.
- Lines, lines, lines. For some strange reason, lines to get into sessions were long, leaving some attendees out in the cold. The situation even got its own hashtag, #lineageddon. I haven’t seen this phenomenon at past Marketo events so the reason is still puzzling to me. The event had more sessions than last year and about the same number of attendees. Maybe a higher percentage of people attended the sessions? Marketo has duly taken note and will adjust for next year.
- The acquisition rumor mill was busy. Marketo’s stock jumped 25% during the Summit on rumors that it was getting acquired. As of this writing, that hasn’t happened. Personally, I love Marketo as a stand-alone solution. In my experience, acquisitions kill innovation as most of the top leadership is gone within six months.
- The DoubleDutch mobile app is great for helping attendees communicate with one another. I hope they address the Twitter photo issue by next year as I found myself having to double post photos to the App and to Twitter.
Looking Ahead – Marketo Summit 2017
Don’t get used to Vegas as the Marketo Summit returns to San Francisco in 2017. The dates are April 23-26th.
Over the next few months, look for video interviews with industry leaders like Scott Brinker, Josh Hill, Jon Miller and more. Make sure to sign up for blog updates to get insights on the latest marketing trends.
Upcoming Interview with Josh Hill
See you next year.