I’m freshly back from attending the 2nd Small Business Unleashed conference, this one held in Columbus Ohio where I served as one of four live-bloggers covering the sessions and workshops presented there. Like the first conference, this one proved to be an excellent time for learning, sharing and networking with small business owners from around the globe (one guy came from Australia). Out of all the conferences I attend, I have to say that this one is my favorite not only because of the quality, but the intimacy it provides seeing it is a much smaller conference than some of its larger counterparts.
I’m two days back from the first Small Business Marketing Unleashed conference and I have to say that this was probably one of the best conference I have ever been to. The conference attracted right around 50 paid attendees which made for a very intimate setting. Speakers and those of who were live blogging were able to spend some real quality time with attendees. The information that was presented in sessions and workshops was of the highest quality and the food served up set the bar high for any other conference to follow.
If you’ve ever tried to find the spare toilet paper in someone else’s bathroom, you’ve experienced a usability issue. Just like the owner of that bathroom, we sometimes get so used to our own sites, we can’t see what needs to be fixed. In this workshop, Matt Bailey, Founder of Site Logic Marketing will walk you through common problems that can make your site a hassle for visitors to use. Find out how even the smallest change can make a dramatic impact on your site’s conversion rates.
The days of flipping through a big fat yellow book to find a local business are quickly coming to a close. After all, why settle for a simple phone number when an online search can also net you menus, pricing, hours and consumer reviews? In this workshop, Matt McGee, SEO Manager at Marchex will walk attendees through the most popular local search engines and will show you the best ways to leverage them to promote your business online.
Need links? Of course you do! In order to rank well and successfully promote your online business, you need an effective link building program as part of your over-all SEO strategy. Link guru Debra O’Neil Mastaler, Owner of Alliance Link walks attendees through the world of links. Find out why search engines rely so heavily on links, where to find links and why a good link can send sales through the roof.
While pay per click advertising can be a quick and easy way to drive traffic to your web site, it can also be a quick and easy way to drain your bank account. Christine Churchill, President of KeyRelevance reveals how to get the most bang for your buck from each of the major paid search engines by choosing the right keywords, writing relevant ads and optimizing your landing pages. She will share the simple tweaks you can make to dramatically cut your average cost per click while increasing your sales so you have the best chance against companies with much deeper pockets.
There’s no doubt the best endorsements come from happy and loyal customers. So what if there was a way to build a community around your web site? A community that helped keep your content fresh, your ideas flowing and the links ‘a coming. Turns out, there is. Find out the best ways to build up a loyal readership and how to get your visitors more involved from the queen of community herself, Wendy Piersall, Founder of Sparkplugging.com.
You may have heard it said that having a search engine friendly site is key to success on the web. That’s fine and dandy, but what in the world is a search engine friendly site? Find out how to code your site to make a difference in how well you rank in the search engines. Learn what tags and attributes are essential to gaining those top rankings. Even if you know nothing about HTML, this session will arm you with the knowledge to help your programming team get your site in shape.
While it’s easy to get overwhelmed about going up against big businesses in marketing realms like search engine optimization, blogging, viral marketing, community building and analytics, a good dose of common sense can really level the playing field. This panel aims to set the stage for the rest of the show by helping you change your perspective on competing with the big boys.
I’m sitting in my hotel room now at the Northwest Forest Conference Center which is located just outside Houston in Cypress, Texas. I will be live blogging the Small Business Marketing Unleashed Conference tomorrow and Tuesday, posting my notes on Search Engine Guide. The conference is being put on by Search Engine Guide and Small Business Brief and is the first of what they hope to be many conferences of this kind.
Small Business Marketing Unleashed takes place in just a few short weeks. This conference is being put on by Search Engine Guide and Small Business Brief and features some very prominent experts in the industry. While the early bird registration deadline has expired, there is still an opportunity to save $100 off the registration fee. It is called the “better late than never” discount in which you can use the word “PUPPY” to save $100 when you register. That means you’ll pay $875 for two full days of learning from some of the leaders in the search marketing industry.