I gotta admit, when I arrived in Houston last month for the first Small Business Marketing Unleashed, I wasn't sure what to expect. I was just weeks removed from attending my first SXSW, and only a couple of weeks past attending the jaw-droppingly amazing Blogger Social. And I was coming to Houston to speak with a group of people that I mainly had never met, and barely knew.
But 3 days later, I had left Houston having made dozens of great friends, attended sessions that SXSW couldn't touch, and had heard over 10 amazing speakers. And I had a complete blast! And here's the proof!
It seems that a lot of other people did as well. This was Search Engine Guide's first conference and their hope was that it would do well enough to justify having it again in Houston in the Spring of 2009. After pulling in feedback from attendees and speakers, Jennifer and Robert realized that a show next Spring was a must, but they also decided to add a SECOND SBMU in the fall!
That's right! SBMU will be back this fall, in Sept in Columbus, Ohio! And topping the first SBMU will be a damned tall order, but I think the guys are up to the task.
First, the conference itself is capped at 100 attendees. Second, each session is capped at 25. This was truly the beauty of the first SBMU. It literally created a classroom setting, instead of your typical speaker lecturing to a large audience. The 'class' size was small, and the speakers were great about attending other sessions when they weren't speaking. Not only that, the speakers all attended the entire event, so there was a ton of networking and Q&A time available for attendees and experts to meet up.
And on top of all this, the early-bird price for the next SBMU has been lowered! Yep it seems that not only were the attendees and speakers excited about how well the first SBMU went, but so were the sponsors. Since sponsors have already started signing up for the second SBMU, SEG is able to drop the early-bird price to $750!
Check out all the deets at Jennifer's post here. Seriously, if you are a small business owner that's looking to better improve your search-marketing, your social-marketing, your SEO, copywriting, or blogging, then you owe it to yourself to attend the next Small Business Marketing Unleashed. I seriously cannot think of a better learning environment and I really can't think of anything else I can tell you that could make you want to attend if you don't already.
Unless.....it was this ;) One of the things that really surprised me about the first SBMU was how amazing all of the speakers were. Seriously, this was driven home for me when I attended Matt Bailey's session on Site Analytics. It was almost all flying completely over my head, but Matt is such an amazing speaker that he held my attention and it was probably the most informative and entertaining session I attended.
But the speaker lineup for the second SBMU will be even better. How do I know this you ask? Oh because Jennifer has added a certain marketing dynamo by the name of CK to her speaking lineup. Yeah I think a couple of you might have heard of her ;) CK will be speaking on BOTH days, on Day One she'll be riffing on BIG-Impact Branding (for Small Businesses). Day Two she'll have a workshop on Online Brand Reputation Management.
As for me, on Day One I'll be presenting on Blogging for Business, getting into the ways that blogging can help your business grow, and then on Day Two I'll conduct a Blogging Workshop, which will walk your through the process for getting your blog off the ground! And also on Day Two, CK and I will conduct a special Blog Clinic! Attendees will submit their blog, and CK and I will pour over it with a fine-tooth comb, similar to what I do here with the Company Blog Checkup series.
And if ALL this wasn't enough, the gang at SEG have also created several special networking events during the conference including board games and the entire shindig ends with a special Final Scoop where we all get together one last time with an ice cream sundae bar!
Seriously guys you will have an absolute blast if you attend, and we promise to send you back home with actionable plans to help grow your business. Check out what the attendees and speakers had to say about the first SBMU!
UPDATE: SEG has launched a blog just for SBMU, it will give us a 'behind the scenes' look at what they did and are doing to plan the event.
Pic via Flickr user storyspinn and SmallBusinessSEM.com
Tags:The Viral Garden, Marketing