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SMX London Thoughts

November 17th, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

As you might have seen I crossed the pond to speak at SMX London earlier this month. From talking to several UK SEOs there seems to be an impression that SMX is for more advanced search marketers, which probably explains why the boot camp track was sort of empty and the more advanced sessions packed full. The Fundamentals of Search Advertising panel was truly international consisting of me (USA! USA!), Ophir Cohen (Israel), Alan K’necht (Canada) and Richard Gregory (UK). Everybody had something a little bit different to say, but I think all the thoughts were very complimentary and I hope the audience learned a lot.

Most of the sessions I attended were fairly worthwhile, though I think it is worth noting that if you are going to attend just one search marketing event, SMX West is really where its at. SMX West is much, much bigger and more well attended and a better opportunity for networking. Also I think SMX West topics are more advanced and cutting edge. That said, I did learn things from SMX London and meet some new folks, so it was certainly worth the time.

One trend I noticed in presentations (and maybe it was just the sessions I was in) is that there’s a tendency to talk a lot about bad marketing tactics, and to do so at such a length that less time is actually spent on good ones and best practices, which I find much more actionable and useful. Telling me what not to do doesn’t really help me do anything (just helps me not do things). I concede that knowing where to draw the line is good and learning from mistakes is important, but I’d prefer to see more than half the content be about success than failure. In particular I found the Integrating Search and Display session to mainly focus on bad examples and very few actual best practices.

Enough on my opinion, I filled out my feedback form! See you all at SMX West in a few months.

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