Top 10 SEO & SEM Conferences to Attend in 2017

Abdo Mazloum
By Abdo Mazloum

Having worked in the digital marketing and e-commerce field over the past 9 years, I’ve been very fortunate and grateful for the opportunity to see the industry grow. During this exciting time, I attended multiple conferences that focused on a wide range of topics, perspectives, and of course, innovation.

Attending conferences in any industry is the surest way to stay on top of your professional game. This is especially true for anyone working in digital fields, and is an important component of understanding the space in which your industry is heading towards. Here are the top 10 SEO & SEM conferences you can’t miss out on in 2017!

1. SMX Advanced (Seattle, WA in June)

This conference is by far my favourite one on the list. SMX Advanced is a conference specifically geared towards experienced Search Engine Marketing (SEM) experts. You’ll have the chance to meet industry experts from Google, Bing and many other reputable businesses. Bing usually sponsors the SMX After Dark event at the Seattle Aquarium, which is a really cool place to be. Another added perk? If you plan on staying an extra few days, it’s well worth the time to go and hike up Mount Rainier.

2. HeroConf (Los Angeles in April, they change cities every year)

Second on our list is HeroConf. I attended this conference for the first time last year in Philadelphia, and it was quite the experience! The focus of the conference is geared more towards PPC, so those interested in the field will greatly benefit in attending. With inspiring speakers such as Brad Geddes and Marty Weintraub, in addition to an awesome agency growth workshop by Jeff Allen, agency president at Hanapin Marketing, this conference should definitely be on your “to go” list.

3. MozCon (Seattle, WA in September)

Much like its sister conference in February (see No. 10), MozCon is definitely one event you shouldn’t miss. What I liked most about this conference is how rich it is in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Social Media, and Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) content. However, there’s less networking opportunities or events taking place here, so you’ll have to be your own ice breaker.

That being said, MozCon is a more intimate event, and is a great opportunity to chat with those in the community, Moz staff, and industry leaders in ways that other events don’t necessarily allow.

4. ClickZLive (New York in April)

Previously known as SES, ClickZLive also has events in San Francisco, Shanghai and Singapore. This Digital Marketing conference is by far one of the most engaging ones I’ve participated in. Last year in New York, I had the chance to attend keynotes by the one and only Seth Godin, as well a great one by Peter McGuinness, Chobani’s CMO. They were amazing keynotes which were very inspiring. They had organised a casino event with prizes which was great to mingle and chat with like-minded Marketers.

5. Google Partners Summit (San Francisco in November)

A digital marketer’s dream come true, what better conference to attend than the Google Partner Summit? Having just participated in this conference, I can safely say that it was an amazing experience. When you’re surrounded by more than 900+ paid search and display professionals from more than 51 different countries, the opportunities to learn from each other are endless! As always, it’s such a wonderful opportunity to hear C-level executives and VP’s share their insights with everybody.

6. Inbound (Boston in September)

There are no other words to describe Inbound other than gigantic. This 4-day event is held every year in Boston, and hosts 10,000+ attendees, and accommodates over 100 training sessions. With keynotes from industry leaders, and plenty of entertainment leading into the evenings, this is one conference that easily aligns both work and play. The event is a huge opportunity to network and see some of the best professionals in the inbound marketing industry, and is certainly one you don’t want to miss.

7. Pubcon (Las Vegas in November)

If there’s one place to hold a social media and optimization conference, it’s definitely Vegas. Forbes has named Pubcon as a one-to-watch and must-attend conference, and with good reason. With access to key leaders in business, start-ups, and keynotes, Pubcon is where every Digital Marketer needs to find themselves. The week-long event is on the longer side in terms of conference length, but the extra time means more opportunity to meet, engage, and learn about the future of social and optimization.

8. SearchLove (Boston in June)

Brought to you by Distilled, SearchLove is a 2-day conference that brings together the best in online marketing. There are 3 events under SearchLove; SearchLove Boston, SearchLove San Diego, and SearchLove London. I had the great fortune of participating in SearchLove Boston, and had a wonderful time engaging with industry leaders in discussing the latest search, analytics, content creation and website optimization.

9. SMX EAST (New York in October)

Much like SMX Advanced, SMX East is the largest search marketing conference on the East Coast. The conference is unique in that as a participant, you can choose between dedicated streams of conferences or workshops that best suit your individual needs. Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or an expert, there’s truly something for everyone at this conferee.

10. MozCon Local (Seattle, WA in February)

MozCon Local is 2-day conference offers actual tips to optimize listings and citations for local businesses. This conference is a really deep dive into local marketing and SEO with industry experts and colleagues at MozCon Local. Informative for all levels, you’ll participate in live Q&A, and mix with fellow in-house and agency marketers, directory publishers, and consultants.

At OPM Pros, we encourage managers to attend conference since personal growth is a must. Being exposed to new stories told by people from diverse backgrounds and experiences, inspire you to be more creative and come up with ideas that will help grow your business successfully.

About the author

Abdo Mazloum
Abdo Mazloum is the VP of OPM Pros' Search Marketing & Display Division and has 8+ years of experience and technical expertise in SEM, media…
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