Speaking at Web 2.0 San Francisco

Having safely returned from home from an absolutely wonderful trip to one of my favorite cities, San Francisco, I was delighted to be among the speakers presenting at Web 2.0 2008 in San Francisco.

Having lived in the bay area and not visiting for a few years, I was thrilled to get back to the city, enjoy the gorgeous weather and meet so many talented people speaking and attending.

This was my first time speaking at this conference. I found, as I had expected from my interaction with other attendees and speakers on Crowdvine in advance of the event, that people’s range of knowledge, value and appreciation for SEO varied significantly.

SEO in the Real World – For Real Businesses and Brands

I knew going in that previous SEO speakers had focused on black-hat tactics. I had to get it out there right from the beginning that I was a somewhat unconventional SEO in that I am a traditional marketer that uses SEO in the “real world”. I knew this statement could be risky because this audience was used to hearing from folks that work with clients with millions of users, able to risk being delisted from Google or other search engines due to their brand recognition and dominance.

But, in reviewing the list of people that said they’d be attending, I knew they were looking for a real-world approach to SEO and after visiting a few websites, I knew how I needed to approach it to give them the best possible perspective. Having walked away with over inches of business cards after the session, I know that they come from all levels of companies in a variety of roles. Everything from CEO’s, to website content managers, developers, designers and PR professionals. Overwhelmingly each of them told me it was the best, or one of the best sessions they’d attended at the event…confirming I’d gotten it right.

With only 50 minutes to present and engage the audience for Q&A, you really can’t get too deep, but my goal was to initiate a more holistic approach to the SEO and 2.0 optimization process. I believe my mission accomplished.

The room was overflowing, with people sitting on the floor around the sides of the room, standing in the back and leaning on the side walls. After the session, I was surrounded by folks with questions, many presenting their business cards to request a copy of the presentation, with representatives from Silicon Valley’s finest, search engine companies and entrepreneurs from around the world.

SEO Begins With Architecture

I don’t talk about “link bait”, black hat practices or how to use your competitors search engine optimization to build your own. Rather, I focus on strategic planning, and extensive pre-planned optimization from website architecture and design to content and images.

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