There are defining moments throughout your career that you will never forget. For me, attending the first ever Confab content strategy conference in Minneapolis in May of 2011 was one of those experiences.
I’d been dabbling in content strategy for a year or so — reading blogs about it, downloading templates, creating a persona or two, and introducing a few new ideas to the agency and our clients. But I didn’t really know what I was doing. I didn’t have anyone who could teach me or answer my questions. I was really interested but didn’t know how to get started.
And then one day, I saw it: a Confab advertisement that would change my career, my title and my work philosophy. I signed up for three glorious days of content strategy. While there, I filled an entire notebook with ideas, practices, processes and examples, and I left with a very clear idea of how to become a legit content strategist.
Conferences can be magical experiences — you leave work behind and immerse yourself in something you love, surrounded by other people who love it. The energy and excitement of a great conference can do wonders for your motivation at work.
There are now dozens of content conferences to attend all over the U.S. Pick a month that works for your schedule, find a city you’ve always wanted to visit, and sign up for what will be a guaranteed good time of learning, networking and recharging.
My loyalties will always lie with the Confab gang, so I’d recommend Confab Central in May for your first content conference. I’ve already submitted my request to attend Confab Intensive in Portland in August. I can’t wait! Others on the Two Rivers Marketing team are attending Content Marketing World in September.
Even if you can’t attend a conference this year, check out the websites and mark the dates of your favorite events on your calendar. You don’t have to be there to benefit:
- Many attendees live-tweet and blog with insights from their favorite speakers and sessions.
- Look for post-conference recaps with links to speakers’ presentations.
- Read through the speaker profiles and follow your favorites on Twitter and add them to your blog reading list.
- Look for “virtual” conference experiences where you’ll receive online access to sessions and workshops.
2015 Content Conferences
Feb. 16 – 18, 2015 — B2B Content 2 Conversions; Scottsdale, Arizona; focused on driving conversions through content for B2B businesses
Feb. 16 – 18, 2015 — An Event Apart; Atlanta; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
Feb. 26, 2015 — Search Engine Strategies (SES); Fort Lauderdale, Florida; learn about SEO and pay-per-click (PPC) tactics regarding how to measure campaign success
Feb. 27, 2015 — SearchFest 2015; Portland, Oregon; one-day event to provide insights and technological advancements in online search marketing and social marketing
March 2, 2015 — Confab Government; Washington, D.C.; one-day event that focuses on the unique content challenges (and opportunities) government employees and agencies tackle every day
March 3 – 5, 2015 — SMX West; San Jose, California; this conference is a deep dive into SEO and SEM tactics where you’ll gain practical tips and techniques to improve your search marketing efforts
March 9 – 13, 2015 — Adobe Summit; Salt Lake City; connects more than 5,000 digital marketers to learn about the latest trends and tools, and how to get better, more quantifiable results from digital marketing programs
March 13 – 17, 2015 — SXSW Interactive; Austin, Texas; for content marketers who are interested in content strategy, technology and multimedia
March 23 – 25, 2015 — Intelligent Content Conference; San Francisco; annual gathering of content professionals to learn about the topics, standards, methods and technologies used today to enable intelligent content solutions
March 25 – 27, 2015 — Social Media Marketing World; San Diego; largest social media conference in the world, designed to inspire and empower you with social media marketing ideas
March 30 – April 1, 2015 — ClickZ Live; New York; one of eight globally held conferences that focus on digital marketing tips, tricks and tools to revolutionize your marketing campaigns
March 30 – April 1, 2015 — An Event Apart; Seattle; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
April 11 – 16, 2015 — NAB Show; Las Vegas; huge event that brings together people from broadcast, digital media, film, entertainment, telecom, post-production, education, houses of worship, advertising, military/government, retail, security, sports, IT and more to learn about next-generation content
April 12 – 14, 2015 — MadWorld 2015; San Diego; technical communication and content strategy conference for technical writers, documentation managers and content strategists
April 13 – 16, 2015 — New Media Expo; Las Vegas; join 98,000 bloggers, podcasters, Web TV creators, traditional radio and TV broadcasters, producers, celebrities, media executives and social media marketers to learn the latest about electronic media
April 22 – 26, 2015 –— IA Summit 2015; Minneapolis; a community gathering of information architects, content publishers and all who design information spaces to share stories, improve skills and make content easier for everyone to find and share
April 20, 2015 — Pubcon; Austin, Texas; social media and optimization conference that offers an in-depth look at the future of technology
April 21 – 23, 2015 — Social Media Strategies Summit; Chicago; conference will help you amplify brand reach and impact through compelling content, storytelling and relationship-building
April 26 – May 3, 2015 — Digimarcon Cruise; Orlando, Florida; the only digital marketing conference that takes place on a cruise ship, learn the latest innovative technologies, best practices and insights from successful digital marketing campaigns
April 28 – 29, 2015 — em15 Conference; San Francisco; offers best practices, case histories and processes for social, email and search marketing
April 30 – May 1, 2015 — Searchlove; Boston; this online marketing conference will discuss the latest in search, analytics, content creation, optimizing your website, paid promotion and more
April 30 – May 1, 2015 — 99U Conference; New York; idea of this conference is to shift the focus from idea generation to idea execution, brings together creative visionaries and leading researchers to share insights on how ideas are brought to life
May 4 – 8, 2015 — How Design Live; Chicago; gathering of creative professionals in all disciplines with a range of experience come to learn about the creative industry
May 11 – 13, 2015 — An Event Apart; Boston; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
May 12 – 14, 2015 — Conversion Conference; Las Vegas; for Web designers, optimization or analytics pros, marketers and business owners, this conference covers A/B split testing, landing page design principles, form and shopping cart optimization, conversion-focused copywriting and much more
May 12 – 15, 2015 — WebVisions; Portland, Oregon; explores the future of design, content creation, user experience and business strategy
May 13 – 15, 2015 — Authority Rainmaker; Denver; single-track content marketing event specializing in content creation, design and driving traffic
May 20 – 22, 2015 — Confab Central; Minneapolis; join 650 content strategy enthusiasts — from newbies to old-timers — for three days of workshops and sessions; don’t wait too long to register, this one always sells out
May 20 – 21, 2015 — Ad Tech; San Francisco; one of nine globally held Ad Tech conferences in 2015, where marketing, technology and media communities come together to find the right solution providers, network and stay abreast of trends
June 2 – 3, 2015 — SMX Advanced; Seattle; search marketing conference for Internet marketers
June 8 – 10, 2015 — An Event Apart; San Diego; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
June 9 – 11, 2015 — Social Media Strategies Summit; New York; social media marketing is the main focus, but there are content strategy and marketing workshops, too
June 14 – 17, 2015 — GIANT Conference; Charleston, South Carolina; founded by a collective of designers and user experience professionals who like to talk about and create rad work
June 20 – 24, 2015 — Society for Technical Communication (STC) Summit 2015; Columbus, Ohio; offers 80 sessions covering all aspects of technical writing, editing, project management, and publication production
July 13 – 15, 2015 — Mozcon; Seattle; inbound marketing conference that focuses on SEO, social media, community building, content marketing, brand development, CRO, the mobile landscape and analytics
Aug. 10 – 12, 2015 — An Event Apart; Washington, D.C.; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
Aug. 31 – Sept. 2, 2015 — Confab Intensive; Portland, Oregon; three days of hands-on workshops on topics spanning UX, CMS, editorial, workflow and governance to prepare you for the day-to-day work of content strategy
Aug. 31 – Sept. 2, 2015 — An Event Apart; Chicago; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
Sept. 8 – 11, 2015 — Content Marketing World; Cleveland; join more than 2,600 marketers for over 80 sessions presented by leading brand markets from around the world covering strategy, integration, measurement
Sept. 23 – 25, 2015 — WebVisions; Chicago; explores the future of design, content creation, user experience and business strategy
Sept. 29 – Oct. 1, 2015 — SMX East; New York; learn SEO, SEM and social media marketing tactics to increase site traffic, conversions and sales
Oct. 5 – 7, 2015 — An Event Apart; Austin, Texas; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
Oct. 5 – 9, 2015 — Pubcon; Las Vegas; social media and optimization conference that brings in speakers involved with social media, Internet marketing, search engines and digital advertising
Oct. 1 – 2, 2015 — REVOLVE Conference; Charleston, South Carolina; two-day gathering geared toward advanced Web technologies, content strategy, marketing, design and development
Oct. 18 – 21, 2015 — LavaCon Conference; New Orleans; content strategy and user experience conference for documentation managers, content strategists, technical writers, content managers and developers, social media strategists, project managers and user experience managers
Nov. 2 – 4, 2015 — A List Apart; San Francisco; educational learning session for practitioners of standards-based Web design
Nov. 4 – 6, 2015 — Confab Higher Ed; New Orleans; three-day session addresses the content challenges facing higher education