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What We Learnt At #BrightonSEO

What We Learnt At #BrightonSEO

Last week we revealed our very own unique BrightonSEO itinerary featuring speakers including Carrie Rose, Roxana Stingu, Serena Pearson, Greg Gifford and Jake Potter and on Friday 13th September the team travelled to Brighton to attend the twice-yearly search marketing conference.

Before the conference kicked off, the team took part in pre-conference a Beach Clean in collaboration with Brighton & Hove chapter of Surfers Against Sewage to help promote #PlasticFreeCoastlines.

After an hour walking along Brighton’s coastline collecting any litter in sight, the team headed into the conference which was held at the Brighton Centre alongside 4,000 other attendees. Here’s how it went down:

What We Learnt At #BrightonSEO_10-00

10am

Technical

Don’t F-Up Your Site Migration

In a 30-minute long talk, Serena Pearson explain that to ensure your site migration goes as planned, you need to know your stakeholders and understand the purpose of the migration, the developers in charges of implementing the redirects, the people managing the content and the other digital media channels. She also shed light onto common issues to avoid.

Accessibility For People & Bots: Compassion-Led Technical SEO

In a talk about the accessibility for people and bots, Ashley Berman Hale explained the importance of inclusive practice of ensuring there are no barrier that prevent interaction with or access to a website in 4 stages. A key takeaway from this keynote was to “focus on the user and all else will follow” – and we agree! Find out some of Ashely’s top recommendations, here.

Future Of Search

Beetlejuice’s Guide To Entities & The Future Of SEO

Just like Gregg Gifford’s presentation, the future of SEO is very much still in the dark and a little daunting to SEOs across the country. During his talk, Gregg explained that if you don’t keep up, you’ll get left out in the cold – and we absolutely agree! He then went on to explain that while many people believe that an entity is a person, place or a thing, it doesn’t have to be a person or an object – it can be a date, colour or even a time. Rich snippets, answer boxes, zero click searches, link building, reviews and local search are all because of entities and they are the factors that will make or break your future in search. You can read the full guide to entities, here.

Rethinking The Fundamentals Of Keyword Research With The Insights From Big Data

Strategic marketing coffee cups aside, Tim Solo’s talk on rethinking the fundamentals of keyword research with the insights from Big Data reminded us of one important factor; pages never rank from just one keyword. Based on an Aherfs’ study of 3 Million search queries, the average #1 page ranks in Google for 1,000 other keywords creating the “search demand curve”. To combat this “curve” SEOs need to analyse each pages ranking potential, which is fully explained through a number of key steps you don’t want to miss out on.

Why AI Will Be A Key Part Of Your Team, Not A Replacement

Next the team heard from Sal Mohammed, the Head of Partnerships at Adzooma. Key takeaway from this talk included that you can’t swim against technological development, it’s too strong. Instead of fearing it, SEOs much implement it through the use of AI which can further help businesses with the acquisition execution and delivery of their project.

International Social

Using LinkedIn Paid Ads To Support A Lead Generation Campaign

While Facebook Ads are great to promote B2C related services and products, LinkedIn Ads are the perfect way to generate leads. As explained by Jake Potter, social guru at Colt Technology, in order to generate these leads businesses must build awareness and influence in order to access the insights required to form relationships and partnerships.

How To Create A Sexy AF PR Pitch To Land Sexy AF Links No Matter Your Budget Or Brand

With top-tier journalists receiving 600 emails from PR’s a day, Carrie Rose understands the struggle of getting the cut through. Because building valuable links is becoming harder, we need to start thinking more creatively. We need to start creating stories that journalists and users alike want to talk about and link to because they’re resourceful, useful or different. Read the full presentation, here.

Users First and Content at Brighton SEO

11:45am

Users First

Digital Marketing to An Older Audience

With the rise of digital marketing unlikely to slow down, marketing to an older audience on such platforms is becoming increasingly more challenging. Hannah McKie explained that in order to market to an older audience, we must adapt our strategies to ensure they are as efficient and effective as they can be for the target audience, which involves doing your research and testing what works well.

The Future Of Search Is Understanding Human Psychology

Up next was the future of search is understanding human psychology by Becky Simms and we agree! A key takeaway from this talk for us was that great copywriting engages users with content that is inspiring, dynamic and selfless, and appeals to all the sense whether they’re visual, auditory or kinaesthetic.

Progressive Profiling & Engagement Triggers

Global attention spans are narrowing, and trends aren’t lasting as long as they used to. With these two factors in decline creating engagement within the first couple of hours of your campaign going live is a crucial part of success. Kenda Macdonald’s explained that in order for your campaign to make an impact, you need to “understand behaviour, how your customers are thinking, anticipate their needs, and validate with data”. A good first impression is key.

Content SEO

Making Captions Beautiful (And Searchable) To Improve Video Experience

Long captions are often cut off, but Ahmed Khalifa knows all the tips and tricks to make your captions beautiful and searchable in order to improve users video experience. His tips included offers an overview of the video using natural language and placing the most important keys at the start of your description while reutilising the top 1-2 main words that help to describe your video.

How To Find Content Gaps When You Don’t Speak The Language

Catherine Goulbourne’s talk on how to find content gaps when you don’t speak the language covered all aspects of a content gap from double checking your content inventory, to not accidentally doubling up on existing content. In a useful cycle, Catherine explained the importance of knowing what you already have in order to ensure that you don’t end up cannibalising your old work.

How To ‘SEO’ Forums, Communities And UGC

In an inspiring talk, Steph Whatley shared her experiences, tips and suggestions on how to utilise SEO forums, communities and UGC to increase SERP visibility. With the potential to grow exponentially, it’s important to set benchmarks for freshness and engagement purposes which will enable you to maintain your sites relevance and search volume. Never undermine the value of connecting to and from relevant, static content! Read more, here.

 

14:30

Structured Data

What’s New In Structured Data

SEO Strategist Charlie Norledge explained everything we needed to know in terms of what’s new in Structured Data. He explained that in order to stay on top, we need to mark up our how-to guides, enhance our search results with rich snippets and return results in visual assistants and voice search by using the Webmaster Central blog, thinking about what Google will do in the future and being the first to implement by testing and reporting on the progress of a piece of Structured Data. Read more, here.

How To Create Connected Schema Markup & Knowledge Graphs

During Martha van Berkel’s conference we were reminded that knowledge graphs are made of triples, highlighting the importance of using the most specific properties possible within the schema markup and avoiding putting the same schema markup on every web page. Instead of creating islands of schema markup, it needs to connect to tell a story much like Martha’s presentation.

From Knowledge Graphs To Commonsense Knowledge Graphs

During his presentation Dateme Tubotamuno described the differences between knowledge graphs and commonsense knowledge graphics, explaining how they have improved search in the age of a semantic web. From the difference commonsense knowledge bases, to the different levels of knowledge relations, his presentation explains everything SEOs need to know in order to utilise wordnet ontology to inform site architecture. Read more, here.

SERPs

Mining The SERPs: How To Make The SERPs A Powerful Weapon In Your SEO Armoury

During Rory Truesale talk, we learnt that the SERPs are a great resource to learn what Google believes our customers want and how we can utilise these insights to improve the quality of our on-page optimisation. With Google rewriting 84% of the SERP displayed meta descriptions, Rory’s talk explained how we can use the fact that Google believes it’s smarter than us to our own advantage by deconstructing and analysis the language in the displayed content. Read the full presentation, here.

SERP Features Glossary

Paige Hobart’s talk on the SERP Features Glossary featured everything from why we should care about SERP features, to how we can utilise advanced knowledge cards through assessing the risk vs reward. The 70 slide long presentation also highlighted the importance of knowing your search landscape and understanding that not all SERPs are created equal. Paige looked across 23 different industry across mobile and desktop in the UK SERPs and explain her findings, here.

Building A Brand With Local SEO: The Factors That Create Effortless Online-Offline User Journeys

In a short but sweet presentation Founder and Optimisation Director of Pure Optimisation, Ant Robinson, shed light on how to build a brand using local SEO. While local search shows the highest purchasing intent, with 28% of local searches resulting in a purchase within 24 hours, there are several challenges in which high street brands still need to overcome. Read more about them, here.

PR & SEO

How To Get More From Digital PR (Without Mentioning AVE)

Getting more value from your digital PR without mentioning AVE is a challenge that a number of Digital Marketing Managers, Executives and PR’s often face, but Laura Hampton reminded that Digital PR was born from an SEO need, reminding us that building links is key. However, when every link is a vote, you have to get creative by investing more in content through a number of owned and shared goals. Read more, here.

How To Actually Measure The Impact Of Digital PR Coverage

Getting any kind of PR coverage is a great achievement, but how can we measure its effectiveness? Fran Griffin explained that everything online is trackable, including your PR coverage. While there is no set, correct answer to measuring PR, there are a couple of ways you can report on your campaign’s lifetime such as monitoring brand searches, quantity of coverage, social media engagement and online conversation. Read more key takeaways from this presentation, here.

Let’s Take This Offline: The Power Of Face-To-Face Events In Digital Marketing

As explained by Claire Gamble, in order to secure earned media coverage, links and a social buzz through offline activity, you need to think outside the box. Break it down into three stages of the face-to-face event and consider how you can generate engagement before, during and after the event has taken place by finding your hook. Learn how you can better shout about your coming event just like Claire, here.

16:10

Advanced SEO

Think Like A Bot, Rank Like A Boss: How Googlebot Renders

It’s time that we start thinking like a robot to rank like a boss and Jamie Alberico is no exception. During the talk, Jamie explain that in order to protect site visibility by delivering our content to Google’s index, we must pass through a powerful construct. Breaking the process down into three main steps, Jamie went on to explain the features and traits, actions and equipment we much take to rank higher in the SERPs. Read more, here.

How Serverless Technologies Can Help SEOs Overcome Legacy (And Modern) Tech Obstacles

Dan Taylor, Technical SEO Account Manager at BrightonSEO explained the changes in edge SEO which is often described as “using edge computing technologies to create new SEO implementation methods, testing and research processes” outside of the regular parameters in which we operate. We learnt about the OOTB CDN benefits and why they’re needed in addition to the importance dynamic prerendering of JavaScript to reduce costs. Read more, here.

Web Server Logs As Technical SEO Key Data Source

While there are several data sources in technical SEO, two are essential; crawl and web server logs. During her talk, Aysun explained that web server logs are in fact a key data source in technical SEO and can help to identify what has happened, the plan of action and predictions of SEO data. Read more, here.

Social Media

How We Got Brighton To #BeMoreSnail

The #BeMoreSnail campaign which operated across Brighton and Hove raised more than £300,000 for Marlets, 31 million hashtag impressions, more than 6,000 app downloads and £1m of media value. Hannah Claire explained how she turned the digital campaign into a huge success in just 10 weeks by turning a simple concept into something the whole family could enjoy.

How To Get Facebook Groups Working For Your Business

Marie Page explained that in order to get Facebook Groups working for your business, you need to beware of the Facebook Groups available! Due to the fact that organic reach and engagement is in decline, businesses need to starting pushing Facebook Stories, put greater emphasis on private messaging and push on building communities via Groups. Discover some excellent new tools for monitoring Facebook Groups, here.

The Relationship Between Pop Culture & Social Media Marketing

As each year passes, we begin to further understand the relationship between pop culture and social media marketing and the impact it has on todays audience. Yumna Kumran explained the different ways we can create a “match made in heaven” by combining social media marketing a pop culture to help further dominate people’s screens.

17:30 – Keynote: Dave Trott – Simple Is Smart, Complicated Is Stupid

In a rather unconventional presentation, Dave Trott, Creative Director at Keynote explained that in order for a campaign to be a success, “it has to be a great idea, not a new technique”. He explained that if you found an advertisement and removed the product from the equation yet still loved the ad, it’s not a good advertisement. Why? Because it’s the software the mind works on.

We’re looking forward to seeing the slideshows for Improve Your Rankings With Internal Links, Like These 7 Popular Sites, How To Turn A Press Release Into Unique Ranking Content and Medic Update – Easy And Actionable Tips For Recovery when they’re officially released!

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