This past weekend, Brian and I traveled to sunny San Diego for some gorgeous weather and an enormous internet marketing conference hosted by Digital Marketer. While Traffic & Conversion Summit has some “basics” sessions for beginners, the conference best serves more seasoned marketers and marketing agencies — those who have existed for a while, have data to look at, products to sell, and systems to improve.
Brian and I co-organize the Sacramento WordPress Meetup, we helped bring WordCamp to Sacramento in 2015 and I was lead organizer for WordCamp Sacramento 2016 and WordCamp Sacramento 2017, and we speak at and attend WordCamps up and down the west coast. But every once in a while, you’ve got to get out of the WordPress Bubble.
At times, the WordPress community can sound like an echo chamber, views can become limited, and understandings of how WordPress is positioned in the market can get warped. WordCamps, WordPress meetups, and other WordPress focused events like Pressnomics, WooConf, CaboPress, and Loopconf all, not surprisingly, focus on WordPress, and while the events are very valuable for those of us in WordPress, too much of that like-mindedness or only that like-mindedness can be dangerous.
This is why we go to non-WordPress business events and invest in attending at least one non-WordPress conference every year. We also believe that if you ever stop learning, you’ll plateau and be less valuable and helpful to your clients. Part of the reason we invest so heavily in traveling to and attending conference of all types is to:
- Stay on top of our game and continue learning
- Ensure our knowledge is current with what’s working and not working, as well as current best practices
- Discover what’s happening in other industries
- Be of better service to our clients who trust us to advise them
- Understand the real-world perceptions and challenges others have with WordPress and using the internet for business
I have wanted to go to Traffic & Conversion Summit for the last few years, but the timing has always conflicted with family vacations and other events. But this year, there were no conflicts!
The conference offers attendees four full days of content with multiple tracks of jam-packed, sessions delivered by some of the leading experts in digital marketing. It also offers an expansive tradeshow area with a variety of sponsor booths and various parties and other events.
Some of the sessions I sat in were okay and some were great.
- It was a little frustrating to sit through a session on a topic I was excited to learn about that didn’t deliver on the description or title promise and instead was filled with hype and self promotion.
- I didn’t appreciate one speaker spending time to have the audience say hi to his mom or bring his kid on stage to feel cool or go off on personal tangents — not the time or the place.
- Thankfully, other sessions provided immense value and made my time and investment in the conference worth it.
- Ecommerce Growth Hacks to Skyrocket Your Sales with Syed Balkhi
- Wicked Smart Contest: Mind-Blowing Marketing Tactics You Can Implement Now
- Google Optimize: How Google’s New Split Testing Tool Will Make You Money (And How It Won’t) with Chris Mercer
- How to Get Search & Social Rankings with Google AMP and Facebook Instant Articles with
- Simple 3-Step Stories That Sell Products, Brands and You! with Perry Belcher
While a lot of the value I find at large conferences now comes in the form of private conversations in the hallways and at meals, some of the Traffic & Conversion Summit sessions knocked it out of the park, including:
Implementing just a few of the nuggets of wisdom gleaned from these sessions will be worth every penny of the conference ticket and travel expenses. Overall it was a fantastic experience and I look forward to attending again!