Posted by Kathryn Lagden...
I recently caught up with Andrew Goodman, a Toronto based search expert, who has taken on the role of Chair for the Search Engine Strategies conference being held in Toronto June 12-13. Andrew is President of Page Zero Media, editor of Traffick, and the author of 'Winning Results With Google Adwords'. And he also volunteers on AIMS search engine council.
KL: I know you've participated in the SES conference before, why did you decide to take on the role of chair this year?
AG: They asked. :) I've pretty much done everything but wash dishes over the past 20+ SES's and have had the opportunity to watch how Danny Sullivan and Chris Sherman have weighed various priorities in attracting audiences and keeping things fresh. It's a great opportunity to step up and mingle more with both the audience and a wide variety of speakers, rather than sticking to just the panels I'm responsible for.
KL: What is the biggest change in this conference compared to previous years?
AG: The enormous, record-breaking attendance. :)
Not to be discounted are new sessions on social media, online PR, local search, and marketing to women online. On the basic front I've spruced up one of the introductory SEO sessions to address major faux-pas, myths, and scams.
Finally, this is the first year for which Yahoo and Microsoft actually have dedicated search ad programs for this country! So this news to many.
KL: Any tips for how attendees can prepare so they get maximum value out of attending the conference?
AG: Get some background. Read some bits of recent books or key blogs in the search marketing space. Remember that presentations will be available on the website.
Don't attend a "basic" looking session if you're advanced, and vice versa.
If attending a clinic session decide in advance if you're willing to have your website up onscreen, and volunteer it if so.
Finally, meet people and learn from them - or form a business relationship. Come a day early, or leave a day late, attend the social functions and sit with strangers at lunch. Enjoy a nice restaurant away from the hotel district, or take a ferry to Toronto Island, to celebrate another successful search marketing conference.