5 Lead Generation World 2020 Takeaways

Lead Generation World 2020 Takeaways

By Joe Laskowski, Managing Partner & CMO

The inaugural Lead Generation World conference took place in Denver from January 19-21, 2020. The Inquir team (formerly Higher Ed Growth) flew out to the Rocky Mountain state to present and take part; we were excited to connect with industry peers in a new way. Lead Generation World 2020 took place in a new location, new format and new decade. Here were our five biggest takeaways.

5 Lead Generation World 2020 Takeaways

A Hunger for New

There is a certain energy and excitement that comes with something “new.” This is true when it comes to latest tech gadget. It is also true when it comes to industry events, and this phenomenon was certainly apparent at Lead Generation World.

There were many mentions of how important it is to mix it up and step outside the norm. And that kind of energy translates into exciting new connections and conversations. Lead generators, performance marketers, service providers, and other attendees gathered on the conference floor in downtown Denver. Some also made their way to the mountains to meet on the slopes.

A New Buyer’s Journey: Behavioral Science & Artificial Intelligence

The new buyer’s journey was a big talking point. How consumers make decisions has changed. Panelists reviewed some of the strategies to better understand and address shifting consumer behavior: Turn to science and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Behavioral science tells marketers more about the why. Jeff Kreisler captured this sentiment in his keynote, reviewing how “irrational” and “illogical” human responses can influence decision-making. Kreisler, who specializes in decision analysis (DA), shared the key considerations of human behavior — such as bias and collective thinking —  that can impact decision-making models. Such models can offer a deeper understanding and better analysis to marketers and lead generators alike.

Trends in human behavior are reflected in data. Data can help predict when a lead is moving toward the decision tipping point. It is one of the reasons why AI is so powerful and will continue to disrupt the industry. Where behavioral science reveals more about why consumers might make a decision, AI tells marketers when and how to answer this “why.”

New Perspective: Web Campaigns

Industry leaders also discussed a greater reliance on web-generated leads moving forward. This 2020 trend seemed to come down to lead cost and quality. Many pointed to the high expenses of running a call center, difficulties in finding third-party centers and tight margins. In addition, conference-goers found web-generated leads to be consistently high quality, which is certainly good for ROI and compliance. Schools and EDU marketers were particularly interested in expanding reach on social media and incorporating more nontraditional campaigns. In all, the industry may see more and more “reverting back” to web.

New Compliance Convos: California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)

There were also some conversations that were a bit uncertain. The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) was one topic that came up again and again — and for good reason. The new regulations rolled out January 1st and have yet to be truly tested in a courtroom setting. At Lead Generation World, there were discussions of CCPA best practices, and there were some providers pressing pause on California-based leads until the dust settles a bit more. All in all, the industry is sure to evolve based on these new rules and regulatory landscape.

  New Directions: Peers Expanding Reach & Changing Paths

Also headed in a new direction? Some of the industry’s biggest leaders. Agencies had joined forces. Businesses displayed new branding. And some expanded to bring long-standing products and services to new verticals. Formerly Higher Ed Growth, Inquir is one such example. With more than a decade in the EDU marketplace, Inquir saw a great deal of opportunity in new verticals and expanded last year to also address insurance, loans, eldercare, and more. The industry as a whole, however, is seeing a shift. Companies are open to change and finding those effective new ways to innovate and meet growing expectations.

Lead Generation World 2020: Overall Experience

There were many meaningful conversions between c-level execs, compliance professionals, media specialists, and more. In addition to drawing decision-makers and discussion, it was clear that Lead Generation World truly considered overall user experience.

App. The LGW app was especially helpful. In fact, one of our team members noted that it was the first conference where he had actively used an app during and after an event. For one, LGW did not rely on any paper marketing: no physical agendas, flyers and so forth. It was refreshing. In addition, the app was easy to maneuver and served as a helpful tool to remain connected and on schedule.

Setup. The soles of our shoes were still intact post-event. As opposed to many events that require a ton of walking, the first-time conference placed its main stage, refreshment area and exhibit hall in one large room. There was also a meetup area in the center with a sponsored open bar, which is always a welcomed addition. The venue was convenient and thoughtfully planned.

Lead Generation World 2020 was about so much more than mountains and performance marketing. There was an undercurrent of collaboration and connectedness; how to best push the industry forward together. LGW is sure to gain momentum and draw the attention of more and more industry leaders. Inquir is certainly looking forward to LGW2021 and helping lead the conversation around the future of lead generation.