MeasureFest and Brighton SEO – Two Days of Marketing Knowledge
Last week was a very memorable one for me. I drove up to Brighton on Wednesday the 11th of September for my first visit to the city. My purpose? To attend MeasureFest and BrightonSEO – both also for the very first time.
I found Brighton to be a truly unique place. Diverse, quirky and fascinating in equal measure. I’m used to having a beach and seafront in close proximity, having lived in Clacton-on-Sea for much of my life, but the city itself is huge and there is so much to see and do.
Day 1 – MeasureFest
On day 1, I attended MeasureFest – a BrightonSEO Fringe event. It was held at the Jury Inn along the seafront a – large majestic hotel with a beautiful lobby. Coffee, cookies and muffins were all on offer, as well as Water jugs with frosted fruit in each one, such as watermelon, lemon and lime and strawberry and lime. They were subtle in taste and very refreshing!
The course would focus on getting the most from analytics in terms of insights and reporting, as well as how to improve conversions for clients.
I walked downstairs to the large conference room for the talks to begin.
Essential Information From MeasureFest
Throughout the talks, I learnt about some very useful tips to integrate into my marketing plans with clients. I learned about the metric Google created called Weighted Sort. This metric will allow me to discover pages with the most and least potential by taking pageviews, sessions and bounce rate into account in a much more realistic way.
Weighted Sort helps predict how pages are going to perform in the future based on minimal data – so rather than take data at face value, it helps to predict how pages will perform over time, allowing you to makes changes immediately rather than waiting for the poor results to come in.
This will be useful for both page optimisation via Google Analytics, and for analysing terms via Google Search Console.
I always knew that FAQs could be useful, but I learnt about just how important they can be to achieve a featured snippet – a piece of text that answers a search query that appears above position one on the SERPs, which is why it’s also known as position zero.
So not only do FAQs inform users already on your website with information regarding your company, your services/products or your website as a whole, it can also lead to substantial levels of new traffic gained from the highly authoritative and incredibly visible position zero.
Therefore, you should add an FAQ section to your website wherever relevant. Conduct keyword research and customer surveys to discover the types of questions your audience is frequently asking.
Conversion Rate Optimisation Tips
In the afternoon sessions, I learned that 70% of users are likely to leave a website if the image resolution quality is poor. Therefore, it is absolutely paramount that your website images are of the highest quality.
Obviously, we also want the images to be as small as possible in order to improve page speed, but we must ensure that image quality is never compromised if we want to present our website, and therefore our brand, in the best way possible.
I also learned that 78% of customers are more likely to convert if a product is shown being used in a situation, such as a home environment.
Therefore, showcasing your exact products in real-life scenarios can encourage visitors to visualise your product within their own home, as though it is already there, making the purchase deliberation process much more enticing.
Day 2 – Brighton SEO
The next day, I arrived at the Brighton Centre ready to attend the globally renowned BrightonSEO for the first time. It was a rather grey day, as it had been the day before, but it did nothing to dampen my excitement for the big day!
The queues were huge, especially for people lining up to print their tickets, which is when I realised I’d left my ticket in my car! I decided the queue was too long to get a new ticket, so I did the 10-minute round trip to my car and back with plenty of time to spare.
The queue got much, much larger than this once I got back!
Upon entering the venue, I was handed a goody bag with an agenda pamphlet to let me know about the talks available throughout the day.
I visited every stall and chatted to people about their tools and how they could help our business provide the best service to our SMB clients. It soon became apparent what a brilliant opportunity for networking BrightonSEO is. We’ve stayed in contact regarding future plans and campaigns moving forward to help continue growing our business.
From a brand perspective, I did feel that Zazzle Media missed a trick by having their company name and logo so low down on their stall banner, and in small text within the content – this is something I would always look to avoid when it comes to brand awareness, and Call-to-Action buttons, for a client’s website.
Sorry Zazzle Media! 🙁
I also managed to bag a number of goodies and cool merchandise to bring back to the office for my colleagues, including DeepCrawl and FATJOE T shirts – the former with song puns, e.g. “how deep is your crawl”, and the latter with Notorious B.I.G and Conor McGregor designs. Interestingly, FATJOE told me that they originally wanted a Mafia type name, so they picked FAT TONY. But, of course, this name is copyrighted by The Simpsons. They also told me that they regularly get mixtapes sent in from people trying to put their music in front of the rapper, Fat Joe! They did speak to him about being involved in their promotions, but a deal couldn’t be made.
True Dat, Biggie.
This is Fat Joe, the rapper. He has no affiliation with FATJOE…yet!
Most importantly of all, I found some extra valuable Link Juice from the SEMrush stall.
We’ll be using this for our clients’ link-building campaigns for sure!
As I was networking on the ground floor, a talk was beginning at the Showcase Stage called “How Marketers Miss Up To 60% Of Their Conversions – And How To Capture Them” by Adam Chapman-Ballard.
Adam was a great presenter who kept us engaged throughout with his authentic, down-to-earth style.
He informed us that Millennials (16 – 24-year olds) make calls to companies more than the older generation. They are smart enough to realise that calling gets results quicker than by filling in forms and waiting.
This made me realise the importance of giving contact numbers on every website HTML functionality to allow easier calling on mobile phones.
It also made me realise that the younger generation know a bad customer journey experience when they see one, which is why they’ll be much less likely to persist and will leave a website, than an older person who may just believe the digital contact journey will lead to better results, “it’s modern technology and it must be like that for a reason”.
Therefore, optimising the customer contact journey, often by simplifying it, is essential. Reducing form fields and clearly displaying what a customer can expect when entering contact details and submitting a query, is a significant way to retain a large amount of traffic that you could otherwise miss.
The Following Talks
Once the first talk was over, I began attending talks held in the rooms on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the building.
I soon realised that BrightonSEO was beyond full capacity. Most talks were so rammed with people, that many others were often turned away for fire safety reasons! This led to large queues of people outside, and many people sitting on floors within the rooms.
This in itself proves the growing popularity, and necessity, for SEO knowledge within the digital marketing sector. SEO certainly isn’t anywhere near dead yet — it’s alive and kicking!
From a talk in auditorium 1, I learned that you should always manually transcribe speech from a video into captions, rather than relying on translation software – it is only correct at an average of 70%.
I also learned that reviews – both your own and competitor reviews – can tell you what users are and are not looking for when it comes to purchasing the services or products that you offer, and that – as expected – review interaction will always lead to a higher conversion rate, so always make reviews accessible where possible.
I then learned about the J.U.L.I.A content process from Alex Jones in his discussion on Content Blueprints. Julia is the quality controller at his company that gives the go-ahead on content plans, and her name was converted into an acronym to represent qualities to abide by with each and every content plan.
He said he wanted to include a picture of her, but she said she would be fuming if he did…
And then he said “but I did it anyway!”
I then learnt about the ideation process from Sam Marsden and how to get an idea into a fully-fledged piece.
He spoke about not putting every idea into just the main asset, as it can become too convoluted. Instead, these ideas should be put into supporting pieces of content (blogs, videos, paid ads) to drive attention to the main asset and help elevate the main asset’s impact.
During the final break, I visited the Trustpilot stall to discuss how we can improve the prominence of Trustpilot reviews and deliver the best social proofing for all our clients.
At the Trustpilot stand, I also tried some lychee juice that was encapsulated in edible seaweed – chewing would pop the capsule and result in delicious, chilled juice with the capsule then easily edible. It was strange, but I would definitely have one again!
Before the final keynote speaker was due to speak, I visited the Screaming Frog stall and learnt about the Page Metrics tab that they are going to be introducing in the next few weeks. This will help us with the SEO Audits we complete for clients, so watch this space!
Keynote Speaker – Last Presentation at BrightonSEO
Finally, the Keynote Speaker Dave Trott – a Creative Director and Author with over 40 years spent in Advertising – delivered a talk called “Simple is Smart. Complicated is Stupid”.
He opened his speech with “By the way I’m not actually angry, I just sound angry when I speak”, which made everyone laugh.
He then discussed how 89% of adverts were unremembered, and gave us tips on how to make adverts more memorable using the following formula:
Make sure your marketing piece makes a memorable impact, make sure it has clear messaging, and give a reason for why the purpose of your piece should be acted on by your audience. Trott tells us that the formula has to be delivered in the above order, and that none of them will work without each other.
He told us that a memorable, well-liked advert is a waste of money UNLESS the brand behind the advert is also remembered, even if the advert is annoying (e.g. “Go Compare!”).
He showed us a video of the late George Carlin deriding the rising over-complication of simple terms for complication’s sake.
In Trott’s eyes, if you can’t explain something complicated in a simple way, then you don’t have a true understanding of it. Complication will actually result in something less memorable.
“Simple may be out of fashion, but it is the way forward.”
So, in a market with an oversaturation of complication, make your marketing asset simple, memorable, clear and to the point. This will help you stand out in a sea of advertisers that make up the 89% – unmemorable content that doesn’t engage with their audience, because it’s focus is too self-indulgent and self-satisfying (proving to themselves that they’re clever), rather than being on getting the audience’s attention and being at the forefront of their decision-making.
Using My New Marketing Knowledge
After his speech, I picked up car and began the drive back to the Essex; full of enthusiasm and endeavour to implement the knowledge I’d learnt into the work I complete for my clients.
I thought more about the talks from marketing experts, and the Trott speech really stuck in my head.
I realised that his talk completely fits with the philosophy of my company, The Local Marketing Team. No fluff, no overcomplication, just results for no nonsense smaller clients, who have no time or desire to hear marketing spiel.
They just need more visitors, higher conversions and an improved brand reputation with simple, highly effective marketing. As long as we achieve this with legitimate strategies and honest practices, then they’re happy, which means we’re happy, too.
To find out more about the work we do, or to hear more about BrightonSEO, get in touch with us today!
P.S this is what my SEO colleague Charlotte chose from the bundle of goodies I brought back. Thank you to all of the companies and speakers at BrightonSEO, you made my first time a blast!