SMX East 2011 – Part 1

September 19th, 2011

SMX East 2011 conducted from the 13th of Sept. to 15th of Sept. in New York had the agenda focusing on the following categorized topics Day-wise:

Day 1– 13th Sept.
Day 2 – 14th Sept.
Day 3– 15th Sept.
SMX Boot Camp Social And Vertical Search SEO
The Big Picture The Big Picture Analytics & Conversions
Enterprise & In-House Technical SEO SoLoMo
Best Of SMX Advanced Paid Search Paid Search
Sponsors And Partners Sponsors & Partners and Site Clinics  Site Clinics

The complete agenda can be viewed on

My main area of interest was organic search  hence I attended  the sessions focused on SEO.

An SEO conference is a platform for multiple sessions and it is very difficult to make a choice of what to attend but the main highlights and takeaways of what sessions I attended are as follows:

Day 1 – 13th Sept. 2011 

The Big Picture Track – The Great Correlation vs. Causation Debate Presented by:

· Eric Enge, Stone Temple Consulting

· Micah Fisher-Kirshner, Become, Inc

· Mitul Gandhi, seoClarity

· Kristine Schachinger,

· Tony Wright, WrightIMC

  • Correlation is: A mutual relation between two or more things where one has a measurable effect on the other.
  • Causation is: A relationship in which one action or event is the direct consequence of another.
  • In every Causal relationship there is a Correlative One, but there is not a causal effect in every correlative one
  • We sometimes perceive something to have an effect but it may not have an effect as that can be a misperception.
  • The only way to eliminate false positives are is to measure test everything over a period of time with a wide array of data.
  • Almost everything in SEO is correlative not causative.
  • In causal relationships, you can directly measure that A does CAUSE B
  • In correlative relationships, you can only measure the STRENGTH of the effect of A on B
  • Correlations are a place to start not an end. Have a sanity check and and question its sensibility before coming to conclusions.
  • Before testing be sure of what is the return on your investment to collect and test this data?
  • Make sure that you are considering all important variables in time and do not rely only on snapshots in a short time span.
  • Be sure you have enough data and factors to run a linear regression
  • SEO is on a time line on a linear position. A single trend is not a pattern or a causal relationship.

The Big Picture Track 

Panda-Proofing Your Content
Presented By:

· Justin Briggs, Distilled

· Horst Joepen, Searchmetrics

· Heather Lloyd-Martin, SuccessWorks Search Marketing

· Chris Silver Smith, KeyRelevance

  • Only 12% of websites in Google index were affected by Panda update – Matt Cutts
  • We are content marketers if we have a blog or a site.
  • “Panda isn’t simply an algorithm update. It’s a platform for new ways to understand the web and understand user experience.” (Vanessa Fox)
  • “It’s not a new algorithm – it’s a new factor.” (Danny Sullivan)
  • “It is easier to reliably detect social spam than link spam.” (Stefan Weitz and Maile Ohye)
  • Combination of automated metrics and human factors;
  • It’s a method for modelling webpages and websites which have certain usage profile combinations, scoring those combos, then using the scores to rank pages. (Chris Silver Smith)
  • When you produce cheap content then it is not meeting any goal
  • Create Quality content – Search Engines do not pay your bills your customers do.
  • Stop asking what Google wants. Find out what your users want.
  • Evaluate your content assets
  • Plan the Repurpose of content
  • Develop an  editorial calendar
  • Watchdog the quality
  • Leverage it when properly planned and evaluate
  • Get everyone on the same page about SEO content. This could be a quick discussion – or an in-house training. Consider what works best for your team

Enterprise & In House Track 

In-House SEO Operations: How Things Get Done 
Presented By:

· Laura Callow, intuit

· Simon Heseltine, AOL Inc.

· Erika Mamber, Demand Media

· Ulli Muenker , Bloomberg

  • Use SEO as one of the fundamental building blocks in everything you do on your website.
  • Ensure SEO is a part of the DNA of your organization.
  • Build buzz and cultivate mindshare.
  • Tailor the buzz for the relevant audience and add your spin
  • Make it actionable
  • Be seen, be heard, be involved
  • Educate, Elaborate, Excite, Empower, Evangelize
  • Share the SEO why behind the what, because understanding builds a sense of ownership
  • If opportunity cost > available resources + cost of vendors Then hire vendors Else don’t hire vendors
  • Ensure your team works according to an accountable system for delivery. Boil up to meet company / business objectives and vision

About The Author

Founder of WebPro Technologies a Web solutions company based in India which focuses on building quality web presence for businesses. Bharati Ahuja is a SEO Trainer and speaker, Web Entrepreneur, Blog Writer, Internet Marketing Consultant.


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