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Academic References for My Keynotes

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I love talking to audience members who come up to me after my keynotes ūüôā

Typically, they’re business owners, execs or marketers who want to learn more, or are excited about one ideas or another, or perhaps they really enjoyed the entertainment portion of it, or they want to hire my agency or have me speak somewhere else.

More rarely, someone comes up who is a very smart peer or industry consultant or vendor who wants to get into depth on the details.

I recently had one of those at my ARN 2018 talk to airport operators and concessionaires.

She was very complimentary and enthusiastic about the talk, but she courteously suggested that I be more clear about where my research and stats came from.

I completely agreed- in principle- because my education was very academic, and I am a scientist at heart, so it’s very important to me to get the facts right and not just make things up or bend research or stats to serve my points.

But when it comes to a keynote performance, which is a very specific and demanding sort of gig, speaking like a college professor isn’t the most effective¬†approach.

Imagine 1,000 people (who are sometimes tired from several days of meetings or perhaps even hung-over from excessive networking) sitting and listening to¬†an intellectual, scholarly dissertation… there’s a lot of eye-rolling and sighing and coughing and seat-shifting and phone-typing and suddenly-necessary trips to “stretch my legs.”

A lot of the success I’ve had so far at keynote speaking is because I can combine ideas with our real-world client experience and stand-up-comedy-style entertainment.

Unfortunately, at the keynote level, which is very different from a training or a how-to class, I sacrifice some of the academic requirements to deliver a powerful, punchy, fun, yet transformative talk with big business impact. That doesn’t mean making up stats- it might mean not listing every source if that would be tiresome. Some of my slides combine 4 or 5 sources into one quickly understandable chart.

The whole point is to make it quickly clear, and going through all that would undo the work I’ve done to make it digestible.

She understood all that.

But her point was still good- and I kept thinking about it-

So I decided I needed to create a resource for my keynotes- a sort of back-of-the-book reference section…

And hence… thus… ergo… this blog post!

The following are the data, facts, research, stats I mention in my keynote and their sources. Hopefully that will satisfy the occasional person who thinks, “Where does all this come from?”

How many users are on each platform (Facebook, Google, YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter)?

This depends on whether we’re looking at U.S. or I’m speaking internationally.

These numbers changes all the time, and so do the sources for this info. I update it at least every 3 months, and sometimes more frequently than that.

Basically, I Google it every time and look at the sources… but here are some of the usual suspects (some are direct sources, and some are meta-sources that collect data from multiple sources):

Customer Loyalty

Digital and Social Marketer Salary Info

Comparing Amazon and the Other Top 500 Internet Retailers

Business Case Studies

  • A number of these are from our agency clients, so the data comes from their advertising and analytics accounts.
  • The PayPal case study came directly from the marketer responsible for the results at the time, Dave Peck,¬† delivered in a panel I moderated for Social Media Marketing World.

Facebook Advertising Facts & Statistics

How Americans Spend Their Leisure Time (Including Social Media)

There you go- Enjoy!

Of course, the stats change a lot, so from time to time I have to Google things again and find new sources- but that’s par for the course in a constantly changing industry…

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