Five SIPA 2016 Speakers Tell Their Audience 'What Matters Today'

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My article yesterday on theSkimm emphasized that the two founders originally set out to help their audience solve a problem "that we thought our friends were having. They're super smart, have great jobs, but don't know what's going on [in the world]."

I was reminded of this just now looking at the website for SIPA member MIT Technology Review. Their morning newsletter is called The Daily: Your guide to what matters today. It shows a cover story and four main articles. "We had a foundation of research feedback of what people were looking for," said Bruce Rhodes, a partner there.

The magazine's mission is to "focus on technologies that make a meaningful difference." theSkimm's goal is "making it easier to be smarter." Rhodes will speak on this and more at the upcoming SIPA 2016 Conference in Expert-ease: How to Win Customers & Influence Markets Through SMEs.

Here are four other equally anticipated speakers and their sessions:

1. Steven Van Yoder's Get the Word Out teamed with the Institute of Management Consultants USA to conduct a study on what's working in marketing for B2B consultants. Here are three key takeaways:

1. Content marketing: 63% of consultants cite Articles (print/online) as their top content marketing tactic, White Papers/E-books came in at (44%), and Blogs at (39%);
2. The top three outbound lead generation tactics among all respondents are Warm phone calls (51%), Online marketing (50%) and In-person, third party conferences (42%);
3. Just over 50% of High Performers generate 50-75% of their revenue from outbound lead generation (vs. referrals). Low Performers generated less than 25% of their annual revenue through outbound lead generation.

Van Yoder will give a keynote talk titled Credibility is King: Lead Your Sector by Embracing Authority Content.

2. Krystle Kopacz, chief operating officer, National Journal Group, Government Executive Media, was asked once by Women in Tech to offer advice to other women—and girls in school. But her advice could be for almost anyone in today's world:

"Embrace your skills whatever they are. Your role or talent doesn't need to be 'traditional' and fit into a singular job description—good companies hire around talent and will find the position for you to succeed. The second thing: It's important to always keep a sense of curiosity. Run to areas that make you uncomfortable, areas that you need to learn more about. And don't say no before thinking about saying yes to projects."

We're excited that Kopacz will appear on two panels: From Information Services to Marketing Services: The New Reality for Modern Publishers and Content Marketing: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly.

3. I profiled Jack Farrell, managing director of SIPA member Jack Farrell & Associates, in 2013 and for someone running a major executive search firm, he was humble and straightforward. He sold clocks in his first job out of college and then got into medical publishing—through an executive search sign he saw on the road—with WB Saunders.

Asked what has helped him to succeed, he replied: "I put a lot of emphasis on common courtesy. Treating candidates with respect, being honest and diligent as we work for clients, getting back to people quickly, and treating each person how I'd like to be treated—these approaches have served us well. I encourage my colleagues to pursue each recruiting assignment as if they were making it to their own team."

Farrell will speak on a panel with Heather Farley, divisional president, Access Intelligence, on Recruitment, Retention and Talent Development: Tips and Tricks to Build a Happy Workforce That Sticks Around.

4. Before adding theSkimm Ahead app, their sole source of revenue was sponsored content. And they were doing okay. Donna Jefferson, CEO of Jefferson Communications, told me late last year that besides being a revenue generator sponsored content can be like paid testing—a way to find topics your audience is interested in.

 "One local school expanded and had a new campus," she said. And they wrote about it. "That's not really what sponsored content should be. It was pretty self-serving. But a lot of people read it... So you never know. I never know sometimes."

Jefferson will speak as part of an all-star panel featuring John Benbrook, CEO, Progressive Business Publications, and Dan Oswald, CEO, BLR, in the session, Innovation & Change Management: How to Reinvent Your Organization Without Going Crazy.

Ronn Are you subscribed to the SIPAlert Daily?
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Ronn Levine began his career as a reporter for The Washington Post and has won numerous writing and publications awards since. Most recently, he spent 12 years at the Newspaper Association of America covering a variety of topics before joining SIPA in 2009 and SIIA in 2013 as editorial director…