The eighth SES New York conference is coming up pretty quickly and as one of the last “Danny” programmed events, it should be a great one. I’ve been blogging SES shows for several years now and have advanced both knowledge and industry contacts tremendously by doing so. Barry, Chris and Ben have also done a bang up job in the past with triple and sometimes quadruple coverage of the event.
Whether you are an old hand SEO and online marketer or a noob, large conferences like Search Engine Strategies offer a number of excellent benefits. Here are my top five:
1. Mix of content. With a big show, there’s pretty much something for everyone whether your a PPC marketer, an in house SEO or work for an interactive marketing agency. SES conferences bring in a variety of speakers and topics. The New York show in particular has an agency slant that should appeal to all the East coast interactive, ad agency, pr firms, web dev shops as well as the abundance of in-house marketers. In fact, here is a list of the four star rated topics for SES that will be a part of the SES NYC programming:
- Video Search Optimization
- Mobile Search Optimization
- Benchmarking An SEM Campaign
- Getting Traffic From Contextual Ads
- SEO Through Blogs & Feeds
- Social Search Overview
- SMO: Social Media Optimization
- Wikipedia & SEO
- Retailer Forum
- Search and Regulated Industries
2. Interest specific tracks. Along with a variety of content to pick from, SES provides tracks to give you a sort of iterative sequence of sessions, that can build upon each other. The tracks offered at SES New York include:
- Multimedia & Mobile
- Advanced Advertising
- In House
- Click Z Network
3. Networking. There are tons of networking opportunities at SES conferences. Networking with peers, competition (keep your friends close but your enemies closer) as well as prospects. Connecting with 2-3 or 20-30 new people at a single event like SES can help you create any number of new business relationships for recruiting new staff, outsourcing work, referring work and finding new prospects.
On top of all that, networking with other like-minded professionals can help you build that mastermind group to bounce ideas off of and share tactics, insights and what becomes the “real” learning opportunity. Search marketers produce an overwhelming amount of content with a significant signal to noise ratio. Befriending other smart marketers can go a long way towards zeroing in on the signal that comes out of sessions, after hours networking and after conference communications.
4. Sourcing content. If you’re a search marketing blogger, attending a conference presents a goldmine of content opportunities. Take notes from the sessions and write up articles. Take your camera and do some informal video interviews. Make Rebecca style comics or use cool tools like VoiceThread to present your photos. Here are a few tips for really milking the value out of content gained from search marketing conferences like SES;
- Take notes from sessions and use them to create 200-300 word blog posts
- Expand those notes into articles and submit the articles to one or some of the following: WebProNews.com, ISEDB.com, SearchEngineGuide.com
- Use the content outline from articles to create a PowerPoint presentation for: internal company training, client training or for use when speaking at an event. This can work the other way around too. Write an article, break it up into smaller blog posts. Or take your PowerPoint presentation and break it up into blog posts and/or articles.
- Interview other SEO/PPC attendees at the conference. Try a different angle than just the “popular” SEO/PPC rockstars. Possibly a series of subject specific interviews. Or interviews with uber talented, but not self-promotional SEO and PPC experts.
- Use photos and videos for your own social media promotion of your blog and company’s services
- There’s a lot more, but people pay us for that. 🙂
5. C’mon it’s New York! I don’t know about you, but whatever excuse I can get to visit New York again, I’m going to take advantage of. The problem is, it can be a bit difficult rationalizing the time away and expense to your manager or business owner using that reason, so stick with suggestions 1-4 above and you should be fine.