Sep 20, 2022

Inbound 2022: The ABN Team’s Biggest Takeaways

By: Sarah Lofgren

Inbound Marketing


It’s no secret that we’re huge HubSpot fans at ABN and that their Inbound conference is an event we look forward to all year long. The 2022 conference was a hybrid event, featuring digital, in-person, and combined sessions. Josh and Michelle flew out to Boston this year to check out the in-person sessions and connect with other attendees, while the rest of the ABN team took advantage of the plethora of available digital sessions. 

HubSpot truly knows how to put on an excellent event. With sessions focused on a breadth of marketing- and culture-related topics, this year’s Inbound was successful in feeding our team’s curiosity and keeping us on the cutting edge as we craft strategies to fuel our clients’ growth.

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Fresh Perspectives from Inbound Leaders

With speakers such as Barack Obama and Jane Goodall presenting, there’s no arguing against the caliber of presenters at Inbound, nor the value of the wisdom they provided. Here are a few of the ABN team’s takeaways:

  • Phil Padilla—Art Director: “AI is accelerating at a scary pace, with front-line marketers driving mass adoption. Like an automobile, we will have a very slim understanding of how it functions—it will simply be embedded into the high demand tools we already utilize today.”
  • Jenni Pratt—Account Manager: “Providing useful, relevant content that educates and informs (instead of being salesy and gimmicky) is the key to establishing authority, building trust, and attracting customers.”
  • Brad Steinbacher—Content Director: “One takeaway from the week is that how you deliver messages is important in marketing—the tools, the platforms, etc.—but even more important is that marketing is a dialogue between you and those you’re trying to reach. Dialogue means listening just as much as talking, which, as Obama pointed out, social media and other mediums don’t encourage.”
  • Michelle Burk-Gomez—Account Director: “I appreciated the quote from Jillian Hoefer, digital content marketer for Terminus, who said, ‘When you can prove results, you tend to get more freedom to be even more creative.’ ”
  • Dora Mesic-Fredenburg—Project Manager: “DEI is no longer a trending hashtag—we, as a company, have the responsibility to create opportunities and open doors to people who otherwise wouldn't get them.”

Personally, I appreciated the session on The Logic of Action: How to Make Inaction Impossible. Presenter Tamsen Webster discussed the stories we tell ourselves during the process of making decisions. She said that we need a “moment of truth” for our decisions to make sense to us, because that moment frees us to make the action that leads to resolution. Webster did an excellent job melding the psychology of buyers to the universe of storytelling.
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President Barack Obama: The Human Element

I think I’d be remiss if I didn’t briefly touch on the centerpiece of the event, the moderated conversation with 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama. He reflected on a wide range of topics, including the current state of American democracy, and tips for remaining calm when confronted with challenging situations. 

He shared that, “It’s very useful to maintain a long view, especially in a crisis. There may be things you need to do right away …. But emotionally, what I tend to be pretty good at is understanding that things are never as good as you think they are, and they’re never as bad as you think they are at any given moment.”

Phil Padilla mentioned that he, personally, found the following quote especially powerful: “As we refine processes, one issue stays consistent, the human element. The art of simply playing well with one another in a respectful manner.”

The art of simply playing well with one another in a respectful manner. It’s a powerful sentiment and one that drives our efforts at ABN, even if we might not always express it quite so eloquently. It’s a pretty great experience to come out of a conference feeling more invigorated and united as a team. Thanks, HubSpot, for putting on such a thought-provoking Inbound 2022. 

We’re already counting down the days until next year. ;)

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