Revealed: Why You Should Attend Industry Conferences

by on August 23, 2011 · 1 comment

Do you find yourself wondering if you should attend an industry related event? Do you find yourself wondering if it’s worth the expense?

I found myself thinking exactly that in the Summer of 2001. I had learned about a conference that was being held in the Fall of that year in Santa Barbara, California. It was called Commission Junction University.

And although my business was doing well, it was still a going to be a considerable expense.

I attended Commission Junction University in the Spring of 2002. It was my first industry conference. I loved it. I enjoyed meeting new people. I loved the breakout sessions. I loved the hotel. Everything.

Lets face it with airfare, accommodations, meals and time away from work it can be costly to go to these events. You need a reason – besides a love of air travel- to invest that kind of time and money.

Reasons to Attend an Industry Conference

The reason I now regularly attend Internet marketing conferences is the same reason you should attend an industry conference; the need to grow.

At my first conference, I learned that there is a universe of marketers, IT specialists and social media gurus who cumulatively have more knowledge that I’ll ever be able to learn on my own.

That conference allowed me to “plug in” to that cumulative knowledge, but that was just the beginning. By meeting so many successful people, I was able to see what I could achieve as well. That, my friends, made all the difference.

I have attended all of the conferences listed below, and I have been asked to speak at several of them as well. If you are into online marketing, or if you just want to know what the Internet could do for your business, you should really consider attending one of these events during 2011.

The Best Internet Marketing Conferences to Attend

The Affiliate Summit is the largest event in the affiliate marketing industry, and is held annually in Las Vegas and New York City. This should be a required event for affiliates as well as merchants who want to glean knowledge from the industry’s leading professionals.

The Blog World Expo brings bloggers from the world over to Las Vegas for panels, networking events and of course, an exhibition hall crammed full of vendors and merchants. This event has great resources for bloggers as well as anyone using blogs to enhance their marketing campaigns.

The Webmaster World’s “PubCon” is yet another reason to visit Las Vegas, but at this event you will learn about a variety of internet marketing strategies, particularly focusing on advanced SEO methods for everyone.

Commission Junction University makes Santa Barbara the place to be, at least three days of the year, to connect with over 800 industry leaders and top Commission Junction affiliates. If your business depends on or can be improved by affiliate marketing, you should be there.

AffCon is one of the newer internet marketing conferences, and it is a free event. AffCon features high level panelists, leading vendors and merchants, and lots of information for new and veteran affiliate marketers.

The ShareASale Think Tank just is a great opportunity for brainstorming and networking. It is an intoxicating blend of sports action, great parties and actual educational opportunities that leads to many great connections and at least a few good ideas.

Many people can benefit from the conferences listed above. A well-managed Blog or a Twitter or Facebook account could help your business. However, there may be conferences available which are more specific to your industry or interests.

Other Options for Conferences and Events

For instance, my wife Arlene has a website called epilepsymoms.com which offers support and information for caregivers of children with epilepsy. There are several health-care related conferences every year which would help her build a more informative website.

My associate Matt Papas is another good example. He has a website focusing on weight loss. Consequently, he could benefit from weight loss industry events. These conferences help companies market to folks who have weight problems and might be looking for a Medifast coupon code or would like to see research on “Does Nutrisystem work?

You get the idea.

Someone somewhere is organizing a gathering of the best and brightest in your industry, and you should be there.

So, what do you have to gain?

You might learn how a Google Plus photo gallery could benefit your marketing plan. You may meet the vendor who has the app which will revolutionize your company’s bidding process. Most importantly, you just might meet the person you want to be in five years, and he could show you how to get there.

So, what do you have to lose?

Nothing, really. The time spend traveling and meeting is actually time invested, not time l
lost. The expenses incurred are most likely tax-deductible (be sure to check with your accountant or company bookkeeper). In any event, the return on these modest investments will likely be very large if you make the connections, use the information, and stay focused on your goal.

So, what conference will I see you at this year?

I look forward to reading your comments.

About the Author:

Author and Podcaster James Martell has been an Affiliate Marketer since 1999 and has been mentoring other marketers since 2001. He is a leading expert in natural search engine optimizing. His lifestyle as an internet entrepreneur gives him time to spend with his wife, Arlene, and four children in their home just south of Vancouver, British Colombia.

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James has written 14 articles on Expand2Web

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Don Campbell August 23, 2011 at 7:51 pm

Totally agree James. Like you, I was a little afraid to spend them money at first, but I really get a lot out of attending conferences. Some of my favorites have been “Pubcon”, Affiliate Summit and ShareASale ThinkTank. I’ve also enjoyed some smaller conferences like SEMPDX and WordCamp.

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