Tradeshow ROI: Is It Worth it to Attend Digital Marketing Conferences?

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In the constantly evolving world of online advertising and digital marketing, staying informed on the latest trends, and making connections with your industry peers can take your business to the next level. One way to get out from behind your computer is to attend a live industry event, but many publishers and advertisers still have questions about tradeshow ROI.

Attending a conference or tradeshow focused on online advertising and digital marketing can expose you to the latest technologies and best practices. You can listen to speakers share their own experiences, maybe helping you to avoid some major pitfalls, and you will be able to network with important people who can help you learn about yourself and your business. The wealth of information, the exposure to fresh ideas and innovative solutions, and the chance to interact with your peers can be an extremely valuable experience.

Digital Marketing and Advertising Conferences to Explore

Consider some of the following digital marketing and advertising conferences. We’ve listed some of the more well-known events, along with a link and brief description. The cost of each varies and most shows include different levels of participation. When considering whether to invest in attending a tradeshow or conference, it pays to consider your ROI. We’ll explore the Pay Off in the next section.

Digimarcon (Santa Monica, CA)
June 14 -15, 2017
Speakers will immerse attendees in the newest online marketing strategies, innovative technologies, best practices, and insights from successful online marketing campaigns. With a focus on developing an audience, Digimarcon has a lot to offer for publishers.
Cost: Starts under $650

Digital Publishing Innovation Summit (New York, NY)
July 17 -18, 2017
This summit brings together more than 40 industry speakers to engage in discussion regarding common challenges and to help attendees establish real strategic solutions to be successful. From implementing SEO strategies, monetizing content, increasing audience, developing multimedia content, and establishing real connections through networking, there is truly something for everyone at this interactive event.
Cost: Starts at $600

Affiliate Summit East (New York, NY)
July 30 – Aug 1, 2017
With speakers like former NFL star Joe Theismann, WordStream Founder Larry Kim, and sought-after motivational speaker JB Glossinger, attending this conference is sure to inspire publishers and online advertisers alike. The Affiliate Summit offers four different passes for attending, each for a specific role in the industry.
Cost: Starts at $99, up to $499 (early bird rates)

Social Media Marketing World (San Diego, CA)
Returns Feb 28 – March 2, 2018
At this conference, online marketers have a wealth of networking opportunities, learn about world-class content, and meet the world’s top social experts. Presenters at the 2017 show included Mari Smith – “the Queen of Facebook,” and coauthor of Facebook Marketing: An Hour A Day; Jay Baer – President of Convince & Convert, consultants to businesses like Adidas, 3M, and Oracle; and Chalene Johnson, bestselling author and leading expert in online business building and life balance.
Cost: Starts at $477

LA Digital Summit (Los Angeles, CA)
Coming again April 2018
LA Digital Summit brings together thousands of digital marketers, global brands, and world-class speakers. This year’s event featured speakers from huge brands like Zappo’s, Etsy and Twitter.
Cost: Starts under $300

Mozcon (Seattle, WA)
July 17 – 19, 2017
With a tagline that reads “Exceptional speakers, Actionable tactics. Lots of snacks.” Mozcon is bound to be one of the more entertaining conferences, complete with a pub crawl at the end of day one. Sessions in SEO, brand development, mobile landscape, customer experience, and social and content marketing will provide actionable items for marketers.
Cost: $849 – $1549

Pubcon (Las Vegas, NV)
Nov 6 – 10, 2017
This conference aims to help attendees tackle the ever-evolving industry of internet marketing, SEO, social media, digital advertising. Its impressive lineup of speakers includes top names with companies like Adidas, Microsoft, Adobe, Survey Monkey, and MGM Resorts. Pubcon also offers several workshops that address organic traffic optimization, PPC campaigns, and even psychographic targeting and neuromarketing.
Cost: Starts at $499

The Pay Off

There is a lot to be gained from getting your team to a conference like this, and because of the nature of the events, there is something for everyone in online advertising, publishing and/or marketing. Advertisers, online advertising networks, brands who want to learn about best practices, website publishers, bloggers looking for proven methods to monetize content – all of these roles will be served in most of the events. The key is to plan ahead in order to customize an experience to fit your needs and provide the opportunity for high trade show ROI.

Need some actionable items for improving your SEO? Are you having trouble identifying why your latest influencer is not increasing readership? Interested in connecting with a new influencer or set of influencers? By being selective about which conference you choose to attend and which presentations and break-out sessions you go to, you can really build a rich experience for yourself and anyone you send. In addition, most conferences and tradeshows will have an attendee or exhibitor list online you can gauge whether your target networking opportunities or customers, will be there.

Keep in mind that a lot of these conferences will offer an alternative to actually attending with simultaneously run webinars or Facebook live feeds. Do not be discouraged if the cost proves to be a hurdle. You may be able to get access through a live feed or replay for a significantly smaller investment.