Community Marketing & The Culting of Brands


I’m big on community. It’s the common thread connecting all my work. It started with gaming forums in high school; then tech meetups in college; and then conferences (WordCamps) after moving to Toronto.

When I joined GoDaddy in 2015, it was to serve as the Community Manager for GoDaddy Pro. This was the first time I’d thought of “community” at a professional level. All my community work had, up to that point, been volunteer-based.

I’ve since moved on from that Community Manager role. The last couple of years have focused on content projects like the GoDaddy Blog. But my “community itch” hasn’t gone away.

I’m still a believer in the power of community marketing, as much as I’m a believer in the power of content marketing.

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Extracting content from events

I attended WordCamp Miami 2019 a couple weeks ago. During that time, my Twitter account unleashed a flood of live-tweeted takeaways.

Most of those tweets came from the detailed notes I was taking. This habit of sharing highlights and commentary during conferences is my way of staying engaged and breaking the ice with other attendees. (I’m terrible at networking.)

Beyond that, the consolidated notes, tweets, and photos also make for a great post-event asset. Especially when it’s focused on the evergreen aspects of the information, like actionable advice, learnings, and follow-up notes.

So that’s what I did with WordCamp Miami. Instead of posting a typical “recap” blog post, I led with what most potential readers would care about:

50+ tips for freelancers from WordCamp Miami 2019.

Yes, the post is still a recap. But it’s not about the event. It’s about the value that came out of the event. The insights, the lessons, the conversation.

These details are partly why people attend conferences like this in the first place. So if I can capture some of that, and put it back out into the community, I feel like that’s a decent way of paying it forward.

I’d love to see similar recaps coming out of other conferences. It’s more practical than watching all the recorded sessions. So how do you do it? I have a five step approach that I bust out every time.

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