What is the Inbound Fair?

The Inbound Fair is one of the most important annual events for digital marketing professionals. It is held in Boston, USA, every autumn and is organized by the makers of the Hubspot software.

Explaining digital marketing and especially inbound marketing is a slightly bigger job than a blog post. But extremely simplified, it is about getting potential customers to find you when they want to instead of you as a marketer chasing them. (If you want to know more, you can download an e-book on the subject that I have – in fact – written; it takes just over 20 minutes to read. Click here (Sorry, you have to scroll down the page first)).

Inbound marketing – I discovered it eight years ago

Eight years ago, when social media was starting to take off, I spent a year scouting the future of digital communication and marketing. Customers included ATG, the Swedish Football Association and Aller Media. After a trade show in New York, I went into a Barnes n Nobles bookstore in Manhattan and found the book Inbound Marketing(you can find it by clicking here).

It was as if everything fell into place. There and then.

Everything was so obvious.

So well thought out. And logical.

However, it took quite a few more years before I started working on it. There were still too many other things that were fun about pure film production. But somewhere in the back of my mind, that book was growing.

Inbound – 25000 visitors over three days

After the 2016 Rio Olympics (for which I had the privilege of working as a reporter for Viasat), I went to my first Inbound Fair in Boston. It was a three-day fireworks show of knowledge and insights. Throughout, everything was so obvious. Thoughtful. And logical.

It was a three-day fireworks show of knowledge and insights.

The fair attracts around 25,000 visitors to the Boston Convention Center. There is usually a heavyweight as a keynote that does not necessarily have to do with marketing, a heavyweight company profile as a keynote and some others who also lecture.

This year it was Deepak Chopra who got me thinking. Last year it was Michelle Obama.

Inbound convention 2018 Deepak Chopras keynote speech
Deepak Chopra’s keynote at the 2018 Inbound Marketing Expo in Boston.

But the main attraction is all the smaller lectures. More than 300 in total. 45 minutes long, packed with information. Depending on what your needs are, you design your own schedule.

Inbound – a sausage stuffing of information

This year I will be munching my way through goodies like: “Hubspot social media tools – the thread that weaves across your Inbound strategy”, “Facebook Video Marketing: How to optimize results using VOD and live broadcast”, “Become an Inbound sales ninja”, “How to drive lead generation and business growth with Facebook Ads” and “Growing you search results in International markets”.

You can see for yourself. What a party it is!

If you are wondering what the full agenda looks like, you can find it by clicking here.

The first day is over.

So and me.

It is a huge sausage stuffing of information. I need a few hours in the hotel room in the evening after the fair to sort out all the information.

The Inbound Fair.
The Inbound Fair. A lot of information to take in.
Yes, but that’s how it is…
There are more than 100 images per day to be sorted in the evening.

Inbound marketing and Hubspot

The fair is organized by Hubspot. Generously speaking, the founders of Hubspot were the ones who coined the concept of Inbound Marketing twelve years ago. Hubspot is a software where you can gather your entire digital strategy and run your inbound marketing. There are several other options – Marketo and Pardot are two that quickly come to mind – in this digital marketing process, but a fair that focuses so heavily on Inbound is pretty much alone.

I am curious by nature. I always want to learn more. Also, I get extremely inspired and energized by these fairs. Last but not least, the industry is evolving so fast that it is good to be out there and hear what people are saying. And not just sit at home or in the office and read about what’s happening online.

As long as I’m doing what I’m doing, I’ll visit the Inbound show in Boston.

Do you want to know which single item made the most impression at the fair?

I will return with a post about it when the fair is over.

Now. Ska. Me. Sleep.