Digital Marketing Strategy Bootcamp: Recap

On October 20th, we hosted our second Digital Marketing Strategy Bootcamp in Toronto.  Despite a rainy day (preceded by the Blue Jays being eliminated the night before), we welcomed a particularly sunny group of 25 marketers to the sold-out event.  It turned out to be a really fun day that included smart discussions, great networking, and lots of fresh ideas.  Our yummy lunch at Pizza Libretto and the afternoon cocktails didn’t hurt, either.

The Digital Marketing Strategy Bootcamp is designed to provide agency and client-side marketers with a greater level of confidence and competence in the area of digital marketing strategy.  A significant portion of the curriculum includes strategic principles and strategic planning frameworks.  During the session, we reviewed how different principles and frameworks applied to well-known real-world examples.  By deconstructing these successful digital marketing programs as case studies, the group was better able to apply these tools into their own work.

The event is designed to be very interactive, as we always include a number of group activities throughout the day to apply the strategic principles and planning frameworks.  I am a big believer in getting people out of their seats and working together, as it gives everyone the opportunity to learn from each other and reinforces the need to work collaboratively to build marketing programs today.  The activities for this event focused broadly on customer-centric design, and we utilized personas created for the groups based on their own favourite brands.  From these personas, we were able to explore digital marketing opportunities based on both customer needs and customer moments.

To end the day, we again brought in a surprise ‘guest client’ for the class to work with in true Dragon’s Den-style.  Our client this time was the Toronto Symphony Orchestra!  Our awesome guests David Postill and Morag Johnson distributed a number of strategic briefs for the different groups to solve, using the lessons from the day.  David and Morag then had the unenviable challenge of judging the responses, and awarding a prize to the winner.  Luckily for all participants, our friends from the TSO channelled their inner Oprah Winfrey and gave everyone a free pair of tickets for an upcoming show. 

Overall, I was really pleased with the session and based on the post-event surveys the participants did as well.  On that note, I have decided to take my own advice and embrace the principle of transparency in marketing.  Going forward, I will be posting all of the post-event surveys that I receive online and unfiltered for anyone to see (you can access them here).  I know that marketers today have limited time and dollars for professional development and there are plenty of training options.  Hopefully by providing these ratings and comments by former participants will help folks make a more confident and informed decision. 

Finally, thanks again for everyone who attended the event—I loved your enthusiasm, ideas, and having the opportunity to meet you all. For those that have asked, I am planning another Bootcamp for early 2017 in Toronto and in Vancouver.  More on that later.  For now, thank you again for making this past event such a success.