We wrapped up 3 days of CONTFERENCE #1 during 9-11 FEB 2022. This was the first edition, a lot of work behind us, but we are proud! After processing the video and calculating statistics we can summarize some results.
1.The audience who was watching us.
Registration for the event started in January 2022 and took about a month. During this time we gathered a very interesting audience and we have enjoyed hosting more than 700 participants from all over the world!
The conference was watched by attendees from 62 countries and 319 cities. From California to Japan, from Sweden to Australia. 🌏🌍🌎
They were engaged, asked insightful questions, and created a great community that we hope will grow with future editions.
Interesting fact that attendees of the CONTFERENCE mostly used desktops (73%) while only a small part used mobile phones (26%) and tablets (only 1%) for event watching.
2. What the speakers talked about.
There were 16 speakers during 3 days, together with hosts they’ve produced more than 15 hours of Content Marketing related content.
Here’s a brief summary of what the speakers talked about during DAY 1: “Inspirations” .
Paweł Sokołowski (CONTADU): Future of Content Marketing.
“Why you need to adjust your marketing tactics with Content Intelligence.”
Pawel Sokołowski opened the CONTFERENCE. He is an experienced digital marketer, implementing data-driven methodologies in corporations and startups. He loves data and his recent efforts were concentrated around content intelligence and dedicated to developing data-driven content strategies. Pawel is a co-founder of marketing tools CONTADU and CLUSTERIC.
Pawel touched the topic of adjusting marketing tactics in the day when the content intelligence generation is becoming a major player in the world of new digital marketing trends and is likely to continue to grow as artificial intelligence evolves. He talked about how Content Intelligence is already influencing big moves in the digital industry, and has spread to other media channels. And the level of engagement of the technology by marketers will be determined by its effective ability to understand natural language by search engines and user behavior patterns to personalize customer communications.
Ulrika Viberg (SEO Unicorn): Search Intents Optimisation.
“How to use the search customer journey.”
Ulrika Viberg is the founder and owner of Unikorn agency. Ulrika Viberg has a solid background in all things web considered, with deep knowledge in Technical SEO, Web Projects, and Digital Strategies! Ulrika has worked in the search business since 2007, with both organic and paid search, in-house and as a consultant. She started Unikorn in 2016 in order to be a full-time consultant at eBay Classifieds Global Growth Team but in 2018 she transformed Unikorn to an agency for multiple clients.
Ulrika described the customer journey as a map of the steps that a customer takes from first contact with your company to their final interaction. The customer journey can be used to identify where customers are dropping off, and what they need to do in order to complete their purchase. She explained how to apply a journey map for any customer touchpoint which will make the process easier to visualize and improve satisfaction among customers. It helps to think about what happened before and after your customer left you satisfied so that you know how to act on them.
Greg Jarboe (SEO PR): Video Content Tips.
“Video is transforming the future of content marketing.”
Greg Jarboe is president and co-founder of SEO-PR, which has generated award-winning results for The Christian Science Monitor, Harlequin Romance, Parents magazine, Rutgers University, SES Conference, and Southwest Airlines. He’s the author of YouTube and Video Marketing and one of 25 successful gurus profiled in Online Marketing Heroes by Michael Miller. Since 2003, Greg has spoken at more than 80 industry conferences and written over 1,600 posts for a number of online publications, including Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Watch, and Tubular Insights. He’s also an instructor at Rutgers Business School Executive Education and the New Media Academy.
Greg brought attention to the growing role of video in the way people buy products, interact with brands and consume information. That video marketing is a new efficient way to engage more people in business and it becomes an opportunity to interact with customers. Greg’s presentation was the guide to understanding video marketing strategy and tactics in the days when online video marketing is crucial in the current marketplace. You could find comprehensive tips about distribution and promotion methods on the example of numerous successful video marketing campaigns, YouTube advertising campaigns and the latest video marketing insights.
Andy Crestodina (Orbit Media): Semantics in Content Marketing.
Andy Crestodina is the co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Orbit Media, an award-winning 50-person digital agency in Chicago. Over the past 20 years, Andy has provided digital marketing advice to 1000+ businesses. He has written 500+ articles on content strategy, search engine optimization, influencer marketing, visitor psychology and Analytics. His articles are read by more than a million people every year. He speaks at national marketing conferences and writes for big marketing blogs. He’s also the author of Content Chemistry: The Illustrated Handbook for Content Marketing.
During the conference, Andy talked about typical and atypical SEO problems for business. This is an extremely important issue, because it is difficult nowadays to create a content strategy for a portal or an online store without taking into account semantic SEO issues. This is because the search engines (Google in particular) want to do their best to provide the most relevant results for users who generate millions of different queries every day. Business owners may need to go beyond the keywords and provide quality content which addresses the user intent.
Thomas Leonetti (Apollo Agency): New concept of search intent.
“Proximal or distal search intent depending on the user’s distance from the requested conversion on the website.”
Thomas Leonetti, has been in the SEO and Analytics cauldron for 10 years as CEO of the Apollo Agency. He is also an oenologist, and he likes to smell the SERPs, understand their aromas, their tastes, and adapt his SEO strategy every day. Thomas now works alongside the new mayor of Strasbourg, Jeanne Barseghian, as a technical advisor.
In his presentation at the conference, he touched the topic of users’ intentions in e-commerce and provided concepts of the proximal and distal search intents. He told us how to find approaches and the right strategy for online stores, in a way of interrelationship with the proximal and distal search intents. He demonstrated implementation of such solutions directly on the web pages that adapted to these two kinds of search intents: proximal as the one that is more specific and is close to the topic and the distal search intent as the one that is less specific and is not close to the topic.
Ryan Foland (Brand Consultant): Selling Through Storytelling.
“How sharing Your story creates authentic connections.”
Ryan Foland is a high energy speaker, host of three podcasts, and is a brand consultant. He’s recognized for his expertise when it comes to marketing people, which is most commonly known as “personal branding.” In his award-winning book, Ditch the Act, Ryan shares the art of being perfectly imperfect. A four-time TEDx speaker, he has been featured in Fortune, Forbes, Inc., Entrepreneur, and more. His 3-1-3® Method uncovers core brand messaging to guide bespoke sales and marketing strategies. For fun, Ryan sails, draws stick figure NFTs, and raps.
Ryan’s topic was about Selling through storytelling as a powerful way to create authentic connections with your audience. The best stories are those that are personal and unique to the person telling them. They can be about anything from their childhood, to their career, or even their favorite hobby. He brought to attention that the key is to share something that you’re passionate about and that will resonate with your audience. Also, it’s hard to ignore the role of social media, which makes it very easy to reach a wide audience with your stories. All you need is “just” a great story. Ryan shared some tips that you need to know how to involve the audience you will be targeting with your message and way of narration.
Here’s a brief summary of what the speakers talked about during DAY 2: “Hands-on”: Semi-technical presentations with a bit of data-driven touch.
Margarita Loktionova & Evgenia Verbitskaya (Semrush): B2B Influencers in Content Marketing.
“Leveraging B2B influencers for your content marketing strategy.”
Margarita is a passionate Content Marketer with over 7 years of experience in various tech industries and 3 countries. Currently, she is a Content Marketing Lead at Semrush. Before that, Margarita worked as a Marketing Manager at Refinitiv (the LSEG) in New York. She also holds two MBA degrees in Marketing. Evgenia is a Communications Expert with over 8 years of managing communications in B2B tech, international, state and non-profit environments, formulating strategies and executing media & influencer marketing large-scale strategic campaigns. Before joining Semrush as Communications Lead for Content Marketing Platform, she developed and implemented communications strategies for the World Bank, OSCE and UNDP projects.
Eugenia and Margarita presented B2B influencer marketing opportunities in their presentation. They shared the key steps on how to build an efficient strategy concerning collaboration with influencers as a helpful factor for spreading your brand to a large group of recipients and building wide reach. The main challenges for marketing activities in the increasing role of social media.
Koray Tuğberk GÜBÜR (Holistic SEO & Digital): Named Entity Recognition.
“Information Extraction or Semantic Role Labeling. Python, NLP and SEO intersections.”
Koray Tuğberk GÜBÜR is the founder and owner of Holistic SEO & Digital. He is a publisher of numerous SEO Case Studies, Researches, and Detailed A/B Tests along with their results. He is a regular guest of webinars, conferences, and SEO-related events. Mainly he focuses on Data Science, Machine Learning, Web Development, Entity-based Contextual Search, Semantic Content Network Creation, and Marketing, Branding, and Reputation Management.
In his presentation Koray focused on Named Entity Recognition. This is a technique used in machine learning and involves teaching an artificial intelligence language model to identify and then categorize information contained in text. In shorts, it involves recognizing and understanding individual pieces of text such as company names, person names, place names, time units, etc. The recognition of named entities is such an important element in the whole process of language understanding. So the topic was extremely interesting, especially in the context of content marketing.
Jason Barnard (Kalicube): Knowledge Panels.
“How to Trigger and Manage a Knowledge Panels for Your Brand.”
Jason Barnard (The Brand SERP Guy) an author and digital marketing consultant. He specializes in Brand SERP optimization and Knowledge Panel management. He is the author of a book (The Fundamentals of Brand SERPs for Business) and regular publisher of articles about Brand SERP and knowledge panels on leading digital marketing publications such as Search Engine Journal and Search Engine Land. He also is a regular speaker of the major marketing worldwide conferences such as BrightonSEO, PubCon, SMX series and YoastCon. He is founder and CEO at Kalicube – a groundbreaking digital marketing agency that, through the Kalicube Pro SaaS platform, helps clients optimize their Brand SERP and manage their knowledge panel.
Jason Barnard’s talk focussed on the issues of Google Knowledge Panels as a part of your brand’s digital marketing strategy and online development. In his presentation he explained the role Knowledge Panels play in search: they are a summary of important information box that Google and other search engines present to users when they type in a search term. He spoke about how companies can use knowledge panels in content marketing, emphasizing that the presence of such a panel on Google helps to increase the credibility of a company to its prospects and clients when they google the brand name, and it is also an easy way to provide users with factual information about the company. The key, of course, is to control the information Google presents in your Knowledge Panel to ensure that it is accurate and positive for your brand. In his talk, Jason explains some of the important techniques a company can implement to take control of their Knowledge Panel.
Vassilena Valchanova: The 4-step content plan.
“Understanding your audience, finding the content topics, formats and channels that will work for you, and building your content engine through distribution and content repurposing.”
Vassilena is a digital marketing strategist, trainer and speaker. She has nearly 15 years of experience in marketing strategy, content marketing, sales funnel building and CRO. She has used her skills to help SaaS products, e-commerce stores, as well as B2B service agencies and individual consultants who wanted to improve their thought leadership and personal branding. She has a blog with actionable digital marketing advice that she adds to based on experience.
In her talk at CONTFERENCE, Vassilena presented her own approach of building a content marketing strategy. There are a lot of moving parts in the process of content marketing planning but Vassilena managed to structure them in a 4-step plan: from understanding the audience through pinpointing the right content channels and formats to planning topics that resonate with potential customers. The presentation touched on the questions and real steps to answer them such as: What do you need to start your digital marketing activity? What do you want to achieve with your content plan? What topics should you choose for an efficient content strategy?
Lukasz Zelezny (SEO London): Unusual ways to scale up your content efforts.
Juror of the annual UK Search Awards and former director of organic performance at ZPG. He previously led the team responsible for organic visibility for uSwitch.com, Zoopla.co.uk and PrimeLocation. For the past few years, he has run his own consulting business under the brand SEO.London. Luke is a hands-on person, he spends a lot of time being up to date with changes in online marketing technology.
In his presentation Lukasz showed how to work with content using technical SEO. He pointed out that content, of course, is extremely important in any content marketing strategy, because without it no action can be taken. However, it’s not just perfectly optimized content that makes Google promote an article or page. It’s also important to develop content according to technical SEO. Lukasz showed how you can perform GAP analysis for your website. He also focused on factors such as site loading time, the relevant html tags in the content, similar and duplicate content or blank pages, etc.
Tom Shapiro (Stratabeat): Crazy Effective Ways to Increase Your Leads through Content.
Tom Shapiro is CEO of Stratabeat, a B2B organic growth agency, providing SEO, content development, content marketing, design, ABM, and conversion optimization services. Through his career, Shapiro’s clients have included Intel, GE, AT&T, UnitedHealthcare, and Hewlett-Packard. Previously, Shapiro was the Director of Digital Strategy at iProspect. During his five years at the agency, the number of employees grew from 85 to 700+. Shapiro’s insights have been published in Chief Marketer, CMO.com, CNN.com, Forbes, and MarketingProfs. Shapiro is the author of the books “Rethink Lead Generation: Advanced Strategies to Generate More Leads for Your Business” and “Rethink Your Marketing: 7 Strategies to Unleash Revenue Growth”.
In his presentation, Tom Shapiro showcased various ways to effectively attract leads through content. Tom explained how to engineer content in alignment with neuroscience and behavioral intelligence for maximum impact. He shared specific techniques for deeper understanding of the audience consuming your content, as well as methods for converting that audience into actual leads. Common themes throughout Tom’s presentation were a focus on audience-centricity, contextual relevance, and alignment with the behavioral signals and digital body language of your site visitors.
Here’s a brief summary of what the speakers talked about during DAY 3: Workshop Technical implementations of Semantic SEO, NLP & data-driven Content strategy in practice.
Greg Bernhardt (Shopify): Internal linking.
Greg Bernhardt graduated from UW-Milwaukee in 2005 with a degree in Information Studies. He has been involved in web design, development and marketing since creating his first site on Tripod in 1997 (Does anyone else remember Tripod!) SEO is his current professional passion. He is an SEO Specialist focusing on content for Shopify. He covers everything: Local, off-page, on-page, technical and content SEO. He is currently learning and using Python to help automate SEO tools. He has also been involved for almost 20 years in creating the world’s best online community for physicists and mathematicians through Physicsforums.com.
Greg talked about the importance of semantics and building topic authority. He then moved on to the practical part where he showed how you can improve and build topic authority through the proper use of internal linking. Greg presented concrete solutions using the Python language and relevant libraries.
Damian Kiełbasa (CONTADU): “Semantics” without semantics.
Damian is the CTO of CONTADU, responsible for developing most of the platform’s technology. He has a degree in Information Studies, but currently he focuses on semantic and content SEO, sharing his knowledge as a host in numerous webinars and as a guest speaker in conferences.
Damian referred to the importance of semantics in building an optimal content marketing strategy. He started by presenting the simplest keyword clustering methods, and identified their drawbacks. Then, he presented how to use Google to perform precise data clustering, which is based on understanding semantics the way Google does, and also addresses user intent.
Koray Tuğberk GÜBÜR (Holistic SEO & Digital): Semantical SEO. Clustering data.
Koray elaborated on the theme he addressed on the second day of the conference. He talked more about Named Entity Recognition, Topic Modelling and Information Extraction. This time he went into more technical aspects and based on specific examples using Python and appropriate libraries.
Dan Petrovic: Extra pre-recorded session: Detecting Hot Topics in Search Console Data.
“Learn how to surface new content ideas by processing large amounts of keyword data from Google Search Console.”
Dan is CEO in Dejan SEO agency. He helps big brands and in-house marketing teams solve complex SEO problems, discover new traffic opportunities and implement content strategies that fully satisfy their audiences.
How do you approach selecting the best topics? What are people looking for and what will they look for in the future? Dan showed an approach for those who prefer to rely on data rather than relying on intuition and creativity. Additionally, he touched on how site users consume content and how we should create content to meet their needs and make our content engaging.
3. Who supported us.
We have more than once thanked the main sponsor Marketin9 and info partner GrowthMentor who supported our event.
Thanks again to all who added value to the event and supports us by spreading information through their channels and more people have learned about our event:
Market Mondays newsletter by Meg Stewart ( solutionsbystewart.com )
4. We gathered all useful information that was transferred from our speakers:
– Learn more about Brand SERP and knowledge panels in Jason Bernard’s book, The Fundamentals of Brand SERPs for Business
– Stay up to date with latest information about digital strategy, content marketing, growth, and measurement on Vassilena’s Valchanova blog and newsletter
– Uncover new strategies of the lead generation activities with Tom Shapiro’s book, Rethink Lead Generation. Catch a special offer for CONTFERENCE attendees and read a FREE chapter !
– Hit the next level in technical SEO by adding Python to your skillset thanks to reading Greg Bernhardt’s blog ” ImportSEM ” and newsletter.
– Get more information concerning holistic seo issues on Koray Tuğberk GÜBÜR’s blog HolisticSEO.digital , newsletter and Twitter.
– To learn more about Ryan Foland’s book, Ditch the Act, his stick figure NFTs, and how he helps his clients, visit https://ryan.online.
– Find more video marketing advices in Grag Jarboe’s book YouTube and Video Marketing: An Hour a Day and in his articles as a columnist at Search Engine Journal
5. What’s next.
We would love to invite you to take part in the second edition of the Content Intelligence CONTFERENCE, on 27-29 May 2022.
Judging by numerous positive feedbacks from attendees, the conference was useful and interesting. We hope that the conference gave you new ideas in content marketing and SEO. We are not saying goodbye but see you again during the next edition!👋
Also we want to add the feedback of speaker Greg Jarboe that describes all the atmosphere of the event and inspires all of us to the next edition: ” I hope I made a small contribution at CONTFERENCE, but I was inspired by the other speakers. I learned things from Pawel Sokolowski of CONTADU, Ulrika Viberg of SEO Unikorn, Greg Bernhardt of Shopify, and Damian Kielbasa of CONTADU, and the other speakers at the Content Intelligence Conference that were unique, relevant, useful, and valuable. Together, we created what the classic European folk story called “Stone Soup.” I hope to return to the next CONTFERENCE for another nourishing meal like that.”