Affiliate marketing conferences are a great way to connect with fellow marketers, industry professionals and program managers. If you haven’t yet attended a conference, I highly recommend attending at least one or two a year to gain important insights, connections and tips from leaders in the industry.
Back in 1999 when my wife and I first started affiliate marketing, the industry was just emerging and aspiring marketers faced a steeper learning curve. At the time there were no conferences that I was aware of. In 2002, events such as CJU (Commission Junction University) started to help bring together thought leaders in the industry and provided important insights to beginners and experienced affiliates alike. I have fond memories of attending CJU 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 at the Fess Parkers Doubletree in beautiful Santa Barbara, and am still impressed by the quality of events put on by this network.
Since attending my first event in 2002, I have attended most major conferences and have been featured as a speaker at many of them. I’ve learned valuable tips and insights from the shows, and highly recommend that you plan to attend one of the following events to take your campaigns to the next level:
- Affiliate Summit – This conference is impressive in terms of its scope (it’s the largest in the industry), quality (featuring industry leaders) and its scale (the conference recently expanded to the UK, helping to capture the growth of international marketing.) Held twice a year in various locations in North America, Summit is a must-attend for affiliates who want to learn about the latest trends, insights and methods from leading industry professionals. You can check out upcoming events and register at http://www.affiliatesummit.com/
- Blog World Expo – Under the shining lights of Las Vegas, bloggers from throughout the world gather at this new conference to discuss content, revenue options and new trends in the industry. Whether you are a professional blogger, use blogs as part of your marketing campaigns or want to connect with leading bloggers, Blog World Expo features panels, networking events and a large exhibition hall filled with leading vendors and merchants at http://www.blogworldexpo.com/
- Webmaster World's "PubCon" – While first time attendees might think of PubCon as the Publisher’s Conference, the first event actually was held in a pub and the event has remained true to its grassroots marketing origins even as it has expanded. Held annually in Las Vegas, the conference covers a variety of internet marketing conferences with a focus on advanced SEO methods for publishers of all levels: http://www.pubcon.com/
- Commission Junction University (CJU) – Attending CJU provides both a vacation in a pristine setting (Santa Barbara, California), along with key connections and insights from top CJ affiliates, merchants and managers. In total, over 700 industry leaders attend the event and you should too. The event is well organized with leading panelists, along with an exhibition area to establish relationships with leading network merchants: http://cju.cj.com/
- ShareASale Think Tank – Enjoy the atmosphere at the 5-star resort at the ShareASale conference and learn from leading industry experts. An invitation-only event, Think Tank invites less than 100 insiders each year for brainstorming, networking and learning – you can find more information at http://shareasalethinktank.com/
- Affiliate Convention – As one of the newer conferences in the industry, Affiliate Convention is a free event for affiliates held annually in Los Angeles. A great destination for both West Coast affiliates and those traveling to increase networking opportunities, the event features high level panelists in many areas, along with an exhibit hall featuring leading vendors and merchants: http://affiliateconvention.com/
- The System Seminar – The Midwest has its own impressive annual conference with the System Seminar, organized by internet pionner Ken McCarthy each year in Chicago. McCarthy organized the very first affiliate conference on eCommerce in 1994 in San Francisco. Known for its high level speakers, valuable panels and great networking opportunities, System Seminar has educational opportunities for all areas of Internet marketing: http://www.thesystemseminar.com/
- Ad-Tech – I attended the last Ad-Tech in San Francisco and came away impressed with the size (over 9,000 attendees) and scope (panels ranging from mobile advertising to international revenues, along with an expansive exhibit hall) of the conference. Ad-Tech holds worldwide conferences each year, so check out the next upcoming event near you: http://ad-tech.com/