Search Engine Marketing Expo (SMX) Sydney 2014 – Cam Wilkes Experience

SMX Sydney is Australia’s best Search Engine Marketing conference, it’s been running for seven consecutive years and attracts a wide range of people from marketers, business owners, industry professionals, SEO Gurus and thought leaders from some of the worlds most influential internet companies.

The conference runs over two days and is a really engaging environment where people from all aspects of the industry can mix and mingle, attend presentations, speeches and keynotes. It’s a great opportunity to network, meet like minded people, gain insight and learn new ideas, tools and better ways of doing things.
Over two days, attendees can cherry pick any of the 40+ sessions and keynotes that suit their needs. These sessions are geared towards intermediate to advanced skillsets, with the advanced SEO Training & Advanced PPC Training workshops covering many of the technical aspects and insights of SEO & PPC.

 Pure SEO’s Digital Man – Cam Wilkes, attended the SMX Sydney as our Adwords Guru, here is what he had to say about the experience:

Cam Wilkes Pure SEO Digital Man
Why did you go to SMX Sydney 2014 and what is it about?
SMX allows attendees to get up close and personal. We’ve got the ability to really get these experts insights on the state of search marketing today and in the future.

It’s not only the more formal aspects of the event that are valuable, the networking and brain picking that can be done at the social occasions (such as the evening harbour cruise) are also extremely valuable.
I’ve read Brad Geddes book ‘Advanced Google AdWords’ and it’s one of my favourite AdWords resources. It was great to tap into Brad’s expert knowledge first hand (and to also discover that the new edition of his book had only just recently been released).

 What was your favourite part?
Not only was it a great opportunity to get up close with the speakers, but it was also an opportunity to meet people from other agencies and business owners who appreciate the importance of and utilise all aspects of Digital Marketing in their advertising.

These business owners offer a wealth of knowledge in regards to the things that they’ve tried which have either worked or failed – I really enjoyed and appreciated this open sharing of information and found it crucial in helping to build relationships.

We were also invited to Google’s Sydney offices for a catch up and a bit of lunch (awesome cafeteria too by the way!).

What were five things you learnt?
Spending most of my time in the Pay Per Click (PPC) geek zone, I took more from these presentations than the others.

Brad Geddes shared bites on how to breathe new life into tired paid search campaigns (that are 10+ years old) which I learned a great deal from.

We were also made aware of a whole heap of tools including pivot tables for spreadsheets – these are extremely useful for segmenting and extracting data.

“One of the main takeaways from SMX mainly was the security in the knowledge that Pure SEO is doing things right!”

When it comes to AdWords, although I learned a few great tips and tricks from Brad, I am generally setting up and maintaining client accounts using best practice – as expressed by the more well-known experts themselves.
Who were your favourite speakers and why? (Or people you met).
Obviously Brad Geddes was my favourite in regards to gaining insight into AdWords due to his reputation and in-depth knowledge which he managed to convey in great detail with ease.

A couple of the other speakers I resonated with include John Gagnon from Bing Advertising who shared some excellent Excel hacks and also Mona Elesseily who shared with us some of her Mobile PPC Tips & Tricks (mobile & desktop PPC really can be two separate beasts).

Jeff Preston who is the Senior SEO Manager at Disney offered some very honest and insightful detail on how the large corporation carries out its SEO and how they start work on their projects long before the movies are released.
We met some great business owners who were extremely passionate about their online advertising and were very keen to pick our brains knowing that we do this stuff all day every day (and think about it when we’re not doing it).
All in all it was a fantastic event giving us awesome opportunities to learn and rub shoulders with the industry’s best.

Cam Wilkes aka “Digital Man” rubbing shoulders with some of the industry’s thought leaders.

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