I spent Super Bowl weekend at Grant Cardone’s 10x conference – here’s what I learned.
This weekend, almost 35,000 people descended on Miami to convene in Marlins Stadium for what is arguably one of the largest sales, marketing and lifestyle conferences in the US. The conference itself is basically a huge pep rally to showcase and sell products, training courses and software designed to help do-it-yourself internet entrepreneurs and aspiring soon-to-be millionaires. Granted, it’s an extravagantly produced, celebrity-studded and slickly branded pep rally – and among the motivational quotes and hype, there were some gems of helpful content.
Adding to the spectacle, Grant actually parachutes into the stadium for the opening.
Joining me were Tony, our head of digital coaching and Valeria, our social media strategist, and we each took away a different perspective. I’ll break down the best advice from the speakers in a moment, but let me start by saying that for advanced marketers, it’s the promotional campaigns for ticket sales to the event where we can learn the tactics that the man insiders call “Uncle G” uses to fill up a stadium.
Morning of Day 1 as thousands trickle in to their seats.
Aside from the fact that Grant is a motivational superstar and has a huge following, I’ll tell you, it was not cheap to get almost 35,000 people to attend a 3-day event over Super Bowl weekend. Grant mentioned at the opening keynote that he spent $10 million putting the conference together and it’s obvious a huge chunk of that went into marketing. Heck, just the billboards alone are in the hundreds of thousands.
Yes, you heard right, this high-tech, online-based conference used traditional advertising, including TV ads, radio and billboards to get the critical mass of new audience needed to make their numbers.
One of the many billboards placed in major markets.
All the traditional campaigns lead to the 10x conference website, which is the centerpiece of their marketing and ticket-selling efforts.
The website features many examples of conversion best practices. It’s clean and easy to navigate. Visitors' most common questions are organized in a logical navigation. There are many opportunities to convert, with big, red, “Get Your Seat Now” buttons are prominently available throughout and almost always above the fold.
The 10x website is clean, easy to navigate with bold calls-to-action.
One of the top things that makes a website convert better is "trust factors" - elements such as certification logos, and reviews that make a user who is unfamiliar with product or service feel more secure about buying it. The 10x site crushes this in several ways.
The unique selling proposition “Come to learn strategies from the most successful entrepreneurs that will guarantee you to 10X Your Business, 10X Your Income and 10X Your Life.” is prominently featured right on the Home page and it is backed up by super-easy to digest “case study-like” testimonials from past attendees:
The 10x site features several testimonials in video, graphic and text formats.
The trust factors are further enhanced by a series of videos from past attendees giving their live referrals. Just below that is a lineup of the top speakers each providing their testimonial in support of the conference.
The copy throughout is on-brand, succinct and peppered with high-value keywords, making the site easy, informative and motivating for the user.
But every site needs traffic and this one is promoted in nearly every way possible. I already mentioned the traditional campaigns, but Grant makes use of nearly every digital tactic available today. We have seen Facebook Ads, YouTube ads, Google Leads ads and I have been mercilessly retargeted after visiting the website.
With these ads we can see how they use consistent branding and messaging between the ads and even more importantly, between the ad and the Landing Page. We can see how influential Russell Brunson of ClickFunnels has been on Grant's marketing - as many of the ads lead to a well-designed funnel instead of the website. (more on Russell later.)
Bold and consistently branded ad banners are part of Grant's online campaign.
And of course, the conference leverages the celebrity status and audiences of the speakers to boost awareness and sales. Naturally, every speaker is going to promote their talk at the conference over email, blogs and social media, but some go a step further.
For example, Russell Brunson acquired a bank of 1,000 tickets to the conference (in the V.I.P. area) and gave them away to his users who purchased one of his offers. This is a huge value ad for both organizations and ClickFunnels got huge exposure by placing branded towels on the seats they gave to their customers.
Speaking of speakers, here are our takeaways on some of the best in attendance at the conference. As I mentioned before, most of the speakers were focused on selling their products, platforms or services - which a brief review of social media will show you irritated quite a number of attendees.
Russell's talk on Day 1 of the conference focused on a demo of this ClickFunnels platform.
Some of the speakers had motivational messages, notably John Maxwell and Bethenny Frankel, but for this article I'll focus on the best tips and content related to marketing.
Let's start with Russell Brunson - he's an internet entrepreneur who made his start selling information and products online. He argues heavily that traditional websites typically do not sell well - which we agree with on principle - and that the answer is to have a sales funnel instead. If you are just getting started with your business online, using ClickFunnels makes a lot of sense. It's fast, easy and intuitive and will get you sales right away.
If you are an established business or sell a more complex product, there are things you can learn from Russell and apply to your website. Here are my favorites:
Clean up the navigation so it's minimal.
Use Landing Pages for your campaigns that are succinct and easy to understand.
Use ONE call-to-action. Nothing stops a conversion faster than confusion.
Make the sale as easy as possible by offering an entry-level purchase.
Upsell and cross-sell in the post-sale "Thank You" pages
One of the most notable speakers at the conference this year was Tai Lopez. Tai is an entrepreneur, investor, partner in MentoBox and author. He's also extremely intelligent and his background at GE Capital gives him an informed perspective.
Tai also spent a lot of time trashing business websites, which are basically what we call "brochure sites." We agree websites need to deliver a lot more value, and here some ideas from Tai that will help:
Use images of people and faces to create a connection
Make the website sexy - meaning understand your audience and target the message and images to appeal intensely to that specific audience
Use a longer video, especially on the Home page, to explain your product. This is especially important for complicated products or services - video is ideal and much more engaging versus a huge amount of boring copy.
Make your benefits clear and easy to understand - make sure that within 3 seconds users know the value of what you offer. (we keep saying it - it's about your prospects and customers, not about you!)
Don't be afraid to use some lightness or humor in your website. People remember more the emotion that you make them feel, so be a little funny if it's appropriate.
We've covered a lot of ground so far, but come back again soon for takeaways on other speakers, including Sara Blakely, Ryan Deiss, Daymond John, and Peter Vargas.
Did you attend 10x? Join the conversation on Twitter at @diazcooper and #10xgrowthcon.
OK, she technically didn't talk about marketing per se, but how can I not share the gems from the world's youngest self-made female billionaire in the US? Sara was one of the warmest and most honest speakers on the stage at 10x. Her tips were motivational and pertained to being an entrepreneur, but can benefit anyone.
Always keep improving - do not rest on your laurels, always ask yourself how the customer can be better served, even if they already love your product/service
Learn how to reframe negative thoughts instead of letting them drag you down - use them as an opportunity to learn and get better
Being vulnerable is a strength - it takes a strong leader to admit their mistakes and it makes you more relatable to your employees and customers
Watch for body language - when you are making a pitch or just talking to others, watch for signs that they are "not buying it" - looking bored, listless or crossing their arms - then change your tactic, do something that will capture their attention
Trust your gut. Your instincts are usually right - go with them
Omi’s passionate about people, marketing strategy and travel. Her eclectic interests led her to pursue a BA in anthropology in addition to a degree in advertising – a field she’s been dedicated to for over 25 years. When she’s not speaking at industry conferences like INBOUND17, she’s jetting off places with lots of history, like Pompeii.