This week, I attended the first Growth Marketing Conference – Atlanta. The conference is typically held in Silicon Valley and brings together top growth marketers (or growth hackers) from all over the world to share their knowledge on business growth.

As promoted on the conference Website, “the Growth Marketing Conference is the only actionable, hands-on educational event dedicated to the most important business issue today – growth.”

They delivered!

I came away with a lot of great ideas on how to build my own business. But more importantly, as a marketing recruiter, it will help me stay current on the latest marketing trends and growth hacks to better advise my clients on the best marketers to hire and why.

In case you missed it, never fear! Here are the top growth nuggets that I learned from each of the GMC speakers…


Opening Keynote: Moving Up Fast: The Secret to Rapid Growth and a Big Exit

Nathan Latka, CEO,

Nugget 1: Don’t get caught in the dead zone

[If you’re not in a SaaS business, skip to the next nugget] If you’re starting or running a SaaS subscription based company, go low or go high. Nathan Latka advises against having a monthly price point between $200-2000. His reason: below $200 can be simple and self-service without the need for a sales team. Above $2000 can support the sales function that you will need to sell a high-dollar subscription. Anywhere in between is the dead zone – not considered self-service and not enough revenue to support a sales team.

Nugget 2: Buy churn from your competitors

Okay, Nathan was the keynote, so he gets 2 nuggets. He said that in any business, the easiest way to build a customer base is to buy churn from your competitors. These prospects already believe in what you sell and are willing to invest in your services, they just want someone who can do it better or at a lower price point. Focus on these customers as your top prospect list.


Presentation: Your 5-Point Blueprint for Building a Successful Growth Framework

Sujan Patel, GM & Co-Founder, Web Profits

Nugget 3: Focus on your top 3 acquisition channels

According to Sujan Patel, don’t dilute your marketing efforts with too many channels. Keep it simple by focusing only on the top 3 channels that are working best for you and build from there. When adding new channels, use the bull’s-eye approach. Start with one channel at a time, build it so that it runs itself. Once you have (and only when you have) mastered it, you can move on to the next channel. Being too broad and spread out across channels is ineffective.


Presentation: Actionable How-to: Creating a Company-Wide Growth Culture Adobe Spark

Thibault Imbert, Head Of Growth, Adobe Spark

Nugget 4: Start small and expand

First of all, I learned about Adobe Spark, which is a social tool that allows amateur designers to create images, video and landing pages. Additionally, Thibault Imbert advised to start with small experiments versus big projects and let your business be driven by results not technology. Oh, and a demo is worth 1000 sales meetings. Good tip!


Presentation: The Ultimate Growth Marketing Tool Stack

Dan McGaw, Chief Marketing Officer, Effin Amazing

Nugget 5: If you don’t know it already, look into

Among the most impressive of the many tools that Dan McGraw highlighted was As he phrased it, “ acts as the Rosetta Stone of the Internet, allowing you to install one line of Java Script that gives you access to 300 tools.” Several of the other tools that Dan highlighted can be found in my blog on the tools and books that came out of the Growth Marketing Conference.


Presentation: 7 Ways to Get Your Sh!t Together (GYST) on Social Media

Heather Dopson, Enterprise Social Media, Godaddy

A few key social nuggets from Heather:

Nugget 6: Get Budget – As some of you may have experienced, it can be difficult to secure budget for social. Be creative with where you find your money. In Heather Dopson’s case, she found her budget by working with the demand generation team who was happy to invest in social to drive demand.

Nugget 7: Get Connected – She also suggests getting out from behind your computer screen and meeting people in real life. Identify and connect with the right people and connect those people with each other. Adding value.

Nugget 8: Get Content – One content suggestion Heather mentioned involves looking at your competitor’s complaints and then creating content to address those complaints.

And finally, be authentic.


Presentation: The Secret To Mobile Search Domination Revealed

Maryna Hradovich, Vice President – Strategic Growth And Development, SEMRush

Nugget 9: Start thinking about mobile first

According to Maryna Hradovich, Google is shifting to mobile first indexing. This means that they will begin looking at the mobile version of business sites first when determining rankings. In order to be successful with SEO in the future, start thinking about mobile now. The official shift is projected to happen at the beginning of next year.


Presentation: Blitz-scaling Your Account Based Programs

Kevin O’Malley, VP Marketing, Salesloft

Nugget 10: According to Kevin O’Malley, high growth companies are 2.5x more likely to pursue Account Based programs.

Nugget 11: Additionally, Kevin explained that Account Based Marketing is more than technology; it is a belief-based-system that requires every single person on your team to think differently. Tools will help you execute and scale but you have to establish the processes and methodology to succeed.


Presentation: Funnel Automation: 3 Workflows That Engage Your Audience & Supercharge Your Sales

Clayton Wood, Founder & CEO, Identitylabs

Nugget 12: When to use LinkedIn automation

Clayton suggests that you use LinkedIn automation for certain types of engagement, like events. Input a really great, sorted list with a target audience that’s relevant. Message example: “Hey, I saw that you were into video marketing, I thought you’d be interested in this event on…” Keep it very short, simple and relevant.


Presentation: 6 Winning Customer Journeys that Wow and Convert

Guy Marion, CMO & Growth, Autopilot

Nugget 13: AutoPilot!

Did you know that there is a marketing automation platform that costs as little as $20/month? In addition to standard automation features, you can even automate the sending of post cards through the platform. Check it out:


Presentation: Closing the Viral Loop: How to Get Millions of Users in Less Than a Year

Savvas Zortikis, Co-Founder & CEO, Viral Loops and

Theo Moulos, Group CEO, Growth Rocks

Nugget 14: Framework for building a referral program

Savvas and Theo presented several great use cases, which are difficult to summarize here. I guess that was one of the benefits of attending the conference live. They also walked us through a framework for building a user base through referrals. There was much more to each of these steps but the framework consisted of:

  1. Defining your objective/goals
  2. What is the invite trigger event (reward)?
  3. How will your users learn about the campaign?
  4. How, what and where will people share?
  5. Why will a non-user convert?


Presentation: Hacking SEO: Simplest Changes, Maximum Impact

Asad Zulfahri, SEO & Growth Manager, Zapie

Nugget 15: Be Social!

Asad Zulfahri’s #1 SEO Hack is to Be Social – social media and SEO are very related – both require content, both are inbound.


Panel: Growth Marketing is for Enterprises Too: Why Integrating Your Product, Influencer, Content, and PR Strategies Makes all the Difference

PANEL: Tricia Whitlock, Director, Your Ideas Are Terrible, Amy Harry, General Manager, Brand Communications, Delta Air Lines and Ariel Yoffie, Growth Product Manager, IBM Data Science And Advanced Analytics

Nugget 16: How to sell to the enterprise

The enterprise panel’s advice for how small companies can get in with mega companies, don’t use email lists. They indicated that their team receives upwards of 2000 emails/week that are cold spam. And they read 0 of them. Instead, try coming through one of their agencies. They regularly lean on their agencies as trusted advisors for their expertise. When you do get in front of a large company target, they suggest presenting use cases to showcase your offering and how you can apply it to a large-scale business.


Presentation: Building Your Dream Team: Essential Steps To Hiring World-Class Marketers

Eric Siu, CEO, Single Grain LLC

Nugget 17: Start With Your Core Values

As a marketing recruiter, I agree that Eric Siu’s practices are a great start for building a marketing dream team. Among other great ways he mentioned to find world-class marketing experts, Eric spoke of a fundamental. He stated that a great starting point for hiring talented marketers is to start with a simple set of criteria that is documented and that incorporates your company’s core values.

This goes beyond a standard job description. It encompasses who the person is, not just what they have done.


Presentation: Social Media Giveaways: How to Get 1000s of Leads Without Breaking the Bank

Derric Haynie, CEO, Vulpine Interactive

Nugget 18: Viral Advocacy

Through Derric Haynie, I learned about Viral Advocacy, which is getting people to publicly share content, which promotes a product, brand or cause. Derric feels that this initiative will be huge for the next 5-10 years.

Unrelated to his presentation, Derric also offered up a networking Nugget. When at a networking event, target people talking in groups of 3. It’s much easier to break into a conversation where there are 3 people rather than two. That way the third can pair off into a conversation with you versus feeling like you’re an outsider in a 2-person conversation.


Closing Keynote: Growth Lessons From Rosetta Stone, Golden State Warriors, and GoDaddy

Dennis Yu, CTO, Blitzmetrics

Heather Dopson, Enterprise Social Media, Godaddy

Nugget 19: Minds Blown!

So much came out of this session that I struggle to put it into words. The one thing that I’ll leave you with is this. Did you know that through Facebook, you are able to micro-target to individuals who work at a specific company in a specific work function/role?

The Growth Marketing Conference – Atlanta was Founded By Vasil Azarov and was Presented By: Shane Reiser, Partner, Your Ideas Are Terrible

Marketing Mob is a marketing recruiting and staffing firm that enables CMOs and their teams to streamline and expedite the hiring of qualified marketing experts who meet the needs of their organization.

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