Blog

BrightonSEO Speakers – All Star Interviews

BrightonSEO is one of the best SEO events, not only in the United Kingdom, but in Europe as a whole; and the Kerboo Team certainly won’t miss a chance to be involved. Don’t miss Paul Madden’s speech, and a chance to visit our booth and speak with us directly! Until then, we’re all impatiently awaiting September and planning our SEO weekend in Brighton.
That’s why we believe that this is the best time to reach out to the event’s speakers and ask them a couple of questions. And we did it!

BrightonSEO speakers - all star interviews

We are glad to introduce our BrightonSEO experts:

Simon Penson, Founder of Zazzle Media
Jon Henshaw, Co-founder and President of Raven Internet Marketing Tools
Tara West, Media Manager at Headstream
David Bain, Head of Growth for AnalyticsSEO.com
Stacey MacNaught, Search Director at Tecmark
Emily Hill, CEO and Founder of Write My Site
David Whatley, Managing Director at MiShop.local Ltd
Adrian Hemsley, Technical Marketing Manager at Fidelity
Alex Moss, Director at FireCask
Ann Stanley, Managing Director at Anicca Digital
Hannah Thorpe, Senior Account Manager at The Media Flow
Samantha Noble, Marketing Director at Koozai
Gianpaolo Lorusso, Web Marketing Explorer at ADworld Experience

Why did you decided to deliver a speech at BrightonSEO?

Simon Penson: For me it’s one of the most clued-up audiences in digital. Full stop. It’s where you have to bring your A game and share genuinely new content. It’s a fantastic place and I can’t wait to get back again!

Jon Henshaw: Whenever I ask someone what the best SEO conference in the UK is, the answer is almost always BrightonSEO. I also know that Kelvin and his team know how to put on a good show, so I’m excited and honored to have a part in it.

Tara West: I really enjoy sharing the new techniques I’m using on my client campaigns in the hope that others in the industry might find it interesting or useful for their own work, and BrightonSEO seemed like the perfect platform to do this. I would talk about PPC until the cows come home if I had my way (often to the frustration of some of my colleagues / friends / family), so to have the opportunity to talk about it to people who might actually be interested is really nice!

David Bain: It’s the top gathering of SEOs in the UK, so if you’re involved in that niche then it makes absolute sense to be there. BrightonSEO is a haven for up-and-coming SEOs who have a thirst for knowledge and that’s the core audience for the This Week In Organic show that I’ll be hosting live from BrightonSEO.

Stacey MacNaught: This will be the third time I’ve spoken at Brighton. I love it (and Kelvin keeps letting me come back!). One of the really appealing things about Brighton is the diversity of the delegates. You get a good mix of agency and in house, technical and creative and people at all levels and points within their careers. That makes some really interesting conversations.

Emily Hill: Good quality content is such an important part of SEO, and I think there’s been a lot more awareness of that in the last few years. The question that’s now being asked is ‘how do I create the right sort of content?’ rather than ‘how do I get my hands on lots of cheap articles?’

David Whatley: I first spoke at BrightonSEO about 3 years ago when local search was beginning to get on SEOs agendas albeit with SMEs. Since then, we’ve seen a step change in awareness amongst big brands and chains looking for local search services, however many do not have a strategy to effectively manage their local search presence.  We have a lot of experience in dealing with multi-location brands and want to connect with more. BrightonSEO has a great audience of SEOs that are keen to learn and understands what we do; we hope to connect with them.

Adrian Hemsley: It’s a great event that has still managed to retain an informal “insider” feel despite massively scaling up over the past few years. Every year there’s always quite a few new nuggets of gold that you can apply to any digital marketing strategy which will give you that competitive edge.

Alex Moss: I love speaking at BrightonSEO for 2 reasons. Apart from the obvious that it is the biggest SEO conference in the UK, it also has the widest range of talent within the audience, all of which want to learn something actionable that day. I want to be able to help that audience get what they want and help them improve their work.

Ann Stanley: BrightonSEO has the reputation of being one of the best conferences in the UK for practitioners wanted to get practical tips from their peers – so it is definitely one of the top conference on my “professional bucket-list”

Hannah Thorpe: BrightonSEO is one of my favourite conferences as it provides actionable advice. It’s one of the few conferences that you can come away from and really implement the things you’ve learnt the next day in the office. It’s an amazing opportunity to be speaking alongside such experts in the industry.

Samantha Noble: Back in 2011, BrightonSEO was one of the first conferences I ever spoke at. It was an amazing experience then and seeing how far the event has come over the years, I wanted to relive that experience again which is why I put myself forward for the event this September.

Gianpaolo Lorusso: The reason is very simple. I have been to BrightonSEO before and I was impressed by the event. I think it is definitely one of the best, if not the best, free (or at least low-cost), European web marketing events.

What will your speech be about?

Simon Penson: For the last event my presentation covered long tail strategies and tying search opportunity to your wider SEO plan. The transcript can be found here. This time around I’m running the Content Marketing training session – a full day of hands on training sharing what we’ve learned over the years at Zazzle. You can book tickets here.

Jon Henshaw: This year Google forced mobile down SEOs’ throats. Mobile presents interesting challenges to SEOs in regards to properly creating responsive sites and maintaining a good user experience. I’ll be covering all of the technical onsite aspects of making a mobile-friendly site that Google will love.

Tara West: I’m going to be talking about Custom Audiences for Facebook advertising, including strategy examples of how you might want to use them, and some tips on how to implement them in the most effective way.

David Bain: It’s not really a speech – it’s hosting a live panel show that will be broadcast live from BrightonSEO through ThisWeekInOrganic.com. This Week In Organic is a live show that I host every Friday at 4pm in the UK featuring some of the top SEOs in the world and their opinion on what’s happened in the world of SEO & content marketing over the previous 7 days.

Stacey MacNaught: The title of my talk is, “Your Content is Awesome – Now What?” I still consistently come across companies, brands and agencies alike, who put this huge emphasis on the quality of content we produce and position it as though it’s the quality alone that will determine the success of content. While there’s no getting away from the fact that the content is hugely important, you can argue that the promotion of that content is, in fact, more important. Over the past few years, we’ve developed a few tactics and strategies for content promotion. Some have been dire. But some have been brilliant and I want to talk about effective promotion and measuring the success of content.

Emily Hill: I’m going to talk about Google Analytics as a source of content inspiration. We tend to think of analytics in terms of traffic – how much we’re getting, where it’s coming from, etc – but it also has a story to tell us about how our content is performing. Once we understand that, we can start to generate ideas for new and improved content.

David Whatley: A physical address is a strategic asset in search!
I will explain how a physical address can be leveraged as a strategic asset in search, and provide tips and strategies on how brands can grow their online presence through local citation building and local listing optimisation.

Adrian Hemsley: My speech will be about corporate stakeholder SEO. Getting SEO moved up the agenda within a large corporate organisation can be very challenging but also very rewarding when you push projects over the line and highlight some of the business benefits of a solid SEO strategy. My talk will look at some of the challenges of corporate SEO and how to approach these with success.

Alex Moss: I won’t be talking about Search or Social itself but instead talk about tools and tips to enhance efficiency and productivity within the workplace. I’ll show you how to save time on tasks, make it easier to collaborate with clients and peers, and help you save time with project management so you have more time to do the work that really matters.

Ann Stanley: I am talking about a slightly different angle – the “benefits of using Marketing Automation Software (MAS) as part of your content marketing strategy”. We have been using and preaching about this tool for the last 2 years and I am surprised that there are still many marketers and SEO’s that are unaware of its benefits.

Hannah Thorpe: Ideation to Impact: How to Create and Sell a Digital Marketing Asset
There are two components to a great digital marketing asset; a brilliant, well-executed idea, and the ability to sell it to a client or in-house team. If you can quantify why you believe your creative idea is good by using data, then getting buy-in from decision makers should be easy. My talk will take you through how to get inspired with data and build saleable digital marketing assets.

Samantha Noble: In short, I will be talking about Google Shopping and giving the audience as many tips as possible (in a 15 minute speaking slot) on how to really compete with this advertising channel.

Gianpaolo Lorusso: I will present a simple (but still very powerful) method to measure every AdWords account’s optimization level. This technique was developed with the help of more than 10 years of direct industry experience, and I think it could revolutionize the way many specialists look at their campaigns.
I am so convinced of this that we are developing a web app based on the KPIs I will show during my speech.

What will the key takeaways for the audience be after your presentation?

Simon Penson: Because it is hands on they will walk away with the tools to pull together a great content campaign with real reach and impact. We’ll cover audience understanding, ideation and then how to build a distribution plan.

Jon Henshaw: After my presentation, the audience will learn about the best responsive frameworks and development tools for creating search engine-friendly responsive sites. They’ll also become familiar with HTML standards that enable them to deliver optimized page assets – like images with different sizes and dimensions – based on the user’s device. Furthermore, some of the more complicated checks in Google PageSpeed and User Experience will be demystified.

Tara West: Hopefully the audience will take away some actionable ways their business / clients can use Custom Audiences that they hadn’t already thought of, and some insights on setting them up effectively.

David Bain: I always try and extract 1 key actionable tip from each guest at the end of each show. On each show I typically have 4 guests, and this show being broadcast live from BrightonSEO should be no different, so as well as having some great opinion on what’s happening in SEO news there should be 4 actionable tips for the audience to leave with.

Stacey MacNaught: The key deliverables really are going to be tactics people can use early on in the content cycle to maximise the chances of content being “promotable,” and I’ll be sharing some specific tools and tactics for scaling promotion, hitting the right people with the right message and on getting extra value out of the people who are enjoying your content.

Emily Hill: I hope people will leave the session with a clear idea of which Google Analytics tools they need to use to evaluate the performance of their content and initiate improvement. Google wants us to think like a user, and Google Analytics gives us a good indication of how the user really feels about the content we’ve offered up to them. We can use this information to strengthen our content strategies and show Google that we’re taking our users seriously.

David Whatley: An understanding of the drivers of local search and why consistent NAP (Name, Address and Phone Number) is so important.
An understanding of how to develop a NAP strategy for different types of businesses and brands. Explain the difference between Local Citation building and Local Listing Optimisation.

Adrian Hemsley:
1. Stakeholder Engagement
2. Changing Marketing Culture to Digital First
3. Managing Expectations

Alex Moss: The best thing the audience will take from my talk is how to earn more time through working lifehacks. Every day we perform tasks that could be completely in a fraction of the time. If I get you to adopt at least 2 of my tips better or faster then my job is done 🙂

Ann Stanley:
1. I will give a brief overview of the main functionality that MAS offers
2. How SEO’s can use the software as part of their content marketing strategy (through automated workflows)
3. How to use MAS to nurture your visitors/leads through the buying process
4. An overview of MAS suppliers and costs

Hannah Thorpe:
1. Data can inspired whatever you’re doing; from a blog post to a piece of long-form content
2. A good idea is only good if you can get a client or the rest of your team to buy into it
3. There’s a wealth of research and data already out there, you just need to know how to use it effectively in the work you are doing

Samantha Noble: After the talk, I hope that the audience will be able to come away with a few practical ideas on what they can do to their Google Shopping campaigns to make them more profitable.

Gianpaolo Lorusso: I think the most informed professionals will immediately understand the effectiveness of this procedure. In a few words, it enables every advertiser to know within minutes if they are spending the least possible amount for clicks, if they are buying the right ones, and if they are getting as many “right clicks” as they could with their campaigns. This is a dream come true for every AdWords advertiser. And the real beauty lies in its simplicity.

If you've attended BrightonSEO before, what are some of your best memories or experiences at the event or after?

Simon Penson: I remember first talking at the event in 2011 I believe. To see how it’s grown since then is amazing and testament to the hard work put in by Kelvin and team.

Jon Henshaw: I’ve never attended BrightonSEO before, but I have dreamed about it. Each dream has been the same. Everything is going great until Paul Madden takes the stage in his underwear. That’s when I usually wake up and refuse to go back to sleep.

Tara West: It’s always a great experience learning from everyone there, whether they’re sharing their ideas in presentations or just chatting about them with a beer afterwards. One particular favourite memory would be Kelvin and Ned owning the karaoke a few years ago!

David Bain: I think that through the years, as you gain more experience, the quality of the experience from these kind of events comes from the people you meet outside the main sessions and the relationships you build for the future. By best memories come from lunchtimes or after the event!

Stacey MacNaught: In April 2014, Distilled’s Vicke Cheung did a session on, “Tips for Designing Great Content.” I’m no designer. I have the design capabilities of a goldfish. But it was really insightful and packed full of tips for people like me. Some of the tools Vicke mentioned that day are tools I am still using now.
That said, I get just as much from the breaks and the after parties as the talks at Brighton. People are always so happy to share their experiences here, more than at many other conferences, I find.

Emily Hill: I’m sure everyone says this, but the best thing about BrightonSEO is the quality of the speakers. I honestly don’t think any other conference comes close. (And the Speakers’ Dinner isn’t bad either!)

David Whatley: Standing on stage as a “Local Expert” in front of 2000 SEO practitioners in the “Greatest Tips” session. Catching up with agencies and brands for a beer and a chat at a relaxed albeit noisy event. Kelvin’s spangled jacket!

Adrian Hemsley: The best memory I had of it was one of the first when Kelvin set up a DJ system above the quadrant. It was BrightonSEO’s first year and it felt like SEO was on the cusp on finally getting recognition – it felt like the geeks and nerds were getting the keys to the kingdom. Good time

Alex Moss: The networking – all about the networking. I’ve been coming to BrightonSEO for years now and have met so many interesting people – some who we share and collaborate with, some who end up clients. One great memory includes walking on the beach at 4am with a few people including Pete Handley and just making friends with people who do the same work as you.

Ann Stanley: Well I have to admit that last conference was my first time. For me the best bit was the high standard of the presentations – both the quality of the speakers and value of the content (mainly advanced and up to the minute details).
Especially when other events charge over £700 for similar content – yet Brighton SEO is free! The disadvantage of this, is there is such a high demand for tickets, which means that you cant take all the team. However this year we cheated and bought a membership allowing us to bring 3 members of the team – absolutely the best investment you can make in SEO this year!

Hannah Thorpe: Last BrightonSEO I had one of my clients with me during Jono’s talk on Delivering an Awesome Site Audit and hearing her saying how spot on he was and it was exactly how they liked work delivered was something that really resonated for me. It’s helped me to simplify the work I do and ensure more of the technical work delivered is actually implemented.

Samantha Noble: The networking is without a doubt one of the best memories from all the BrightonSEO events I have attended. With so many industry friends turning up for the event, it is a great way to catch up with old faces and meet some new ones.

Gianpaolo Lorusso: BrightonSEO, like all events of this kind, to be honest, has presented a fabulous opportunity for me to meet a lot of interesting international professionals in my sector. Even my speech at this edition is linked to my regularly participating in this conference.
In the web marketing field, you can find a lot of contradictory information online. That is why is so vital to know personally the top experts in your area of interest and to learn who you can really trust.


The team at Kerboo will exhibiting on the expo floor at BrightonSEO so remember to stop by and say Hello, alternatively if you want to get a headstart on the conversation – Book a Demo or get in touch

See you there!

Alexandra and the Kerboo Team

Ready to get started?

For one low monthly subscription you get access to the entire Kerboo suite, view our packages page to learn more and sign up today. Feel you need to see what we can do first? Book a quick 20 minute online demo with one of our experts to see what Kerboo can do for you.