This is probably the last blog that will be written about the recent Brighton SEO conference but hey, better late than never. Some of the delegates who attended this excellent event in the seaside location currently in the news for hosting the Lib Dem party conference had posted their blog offerings on-line the day after it all finished not a week or so on like this one. Oops. Well, all I can say is that I have had longer to mull over the days goings on and therefore this blog will be far more use to our good readers. mmm… You can judge that for yourselves but hopefully if all else fails at least you may enjoy reading it.
Teapot Creative’s very own SEO dynamic duo, Ade & I were dispatched to the south coast this time by train having travelled down to the April conference by car which in hindsight was a bit of a mistake…. traffic jams…. hundreds of miles…. In total 1,500 or so delegates made their way to the Brighton Dome on Friday 14th September for the range of excellent lectures, discussion sessions and as is now customary for Brighton SEO conferences, some amusing on-stage competitions for willing volunteers.
Non-SEO readers of this blog may be slightly puzzled as to why a giant Penguin and Panda (suited up humans not real ones!) danced together on stage to MC Hammer’s “You Can’t Touch This” as the 9:30am on-stage welcoming party but this kind of thing sums up Brighton SEO. Lighthearted, full of laughter, jam packed with hot tips and very interesting.
The standard of presentations was as high as those at the April conference with a particularly memorable opening session given by Dave Trott, Executive Director of the advertising agency CSTTG. As he began I don’t think I was alone in wishing that the day had kicked off with a slightly lighter push rather like the panel/audience discussion that the April conference had opted for. I was therefore surprised to find myself riveted to his every word as he guided us through the principals of Predatory Thinking and how to look at the buzz word ‘creativity’ through a veteran Ad Man’s eyes. I had more conversations with other delegates during the break out sessions and in the evening where mentions of this lecture popped up than any of the other ones! In other words this was a really good presentation.
In between the coffee breaks, lunch in a local pub and brief forays into the September sunshine, the speakers covered a good range of topics both on and away from SEO which helped to make that side of the day a very well rounded affair. Branding, Affiliate Marketing, Content Planning, Social Media, Analytics, Mobile SEO and ‘American vs English’ English language all popped up in a jam packed agenda. The day ran pretty smoothly and apart from the odd dip the speakers kept my attention and ears switched on and tuned in. I say this because having attended a lot of conferences over the last ten years, I have found that it is not the subject matter that is key to keeping the delegates attention but the person on stage and how they deliver their presentation – i.e. boring subject with a good speaker = winner and vice versa.
As evening arrived, the tired delegates and speakers moved from the splendour of the Brighton Dome into the Grain Exchange hall next door. As with our previous SEO adventure in Brighton there was a long way to go until bedtime and coffee was immediately swapped for pints of beer. All around us fellow delegates got stuck into the live band karaoke and various side show games around the perimeter of the room. From here it was out into the pubs of the city with a splendid group of SEOers from around the UK all of whom fully embraced Brighton’s famous ‘joie de vivre’ attitude. It is at this stage of any conference worth it’s salt when the real networking is done. Laughter and pub chatter fill the air, stories are told, tips are exchanged, camera phones capture amusing drunken group poses, goodbyes and business cards are swapped with a warm hug rather than a half hearted handshake and people actually remember one another rather than pretending to upon meeting at the next conference or SEO bash. Suffice to say that if it had been mid-summer and not mid September when Ade & I eventually made our winding way westwards down the promenade towards the sanctuary of our hotel then we might just have seen the sky lightening in the east¦.
I said at the end of the blog I posted after the last Brighton SEO that it wouldn’t be long before SEO joins the list of things that make Brighton famous. Well, that list is obviously pretty long already and whilst SEO may not be on the lips of a man on the street if you asked him to come up with things Brighton is known for it certainly would be if you asked anyone involved in SEO industry within the UK and quite possibly Western Europe. So, a big thumbs up to the Brighton SEO organisers from Ade & I here at Teapot Creative. You put on a great day. We are already looking forward to the next one in April 2013 and something tells me we are not alone.