What was C3 2014 like? You said it best. It felt like entering Oz: green lights, winding brick roads, and colorful assortment of travelers searching for answers from wizards quite literally behind this curtain.
At C3, I spent most of my time sifting through tweets and interviewing attendees. Essentially, I was listening – taking a page from one of my favorite C3 sessions with Lauren and Stacey from Teach For America.
While I can’t fit it all into one post, I’m sharing a few of the moments I heard about over and over again from attendees. Here they are, the most tweeted and talked-about moments at this year’s C3.
1) Whisper to the Weird — Seth Godin
#C3NY starting trending while Seth Godin was on stage. That’s because his presentation was electric, charismatic, and for many people, introduced a whole new way of looking at marketing.
His talk encouraged attendees to focus marketing energy on small groups of loyal advocates, what he called the connection economy. “Don’t yell at average people. Whisper to weird people.”
2) Why Weren’t You at John Shehata’s Mobile Presentation?
Several hundred SEO minds exploded during with the revelatory, highly actionable Why Mobile Why Now presentation from John Shehata, ABC’s Executive Director of SEO and Social Media.
Did you know that responsive design is four times slower than a dedicated mobile site? Did you know that Google expects above-the-fold content to load in one second? That 78% of all US users are mobile? Go check out the slides – ignore Wil Reynolds at your own peril.
3) I Would Like To Thank the C3 Academy
Speaking of Wil Reynolds, have you seen this adorable picture yet?
Throughout C3, the Conductor team surprised their customers with awards they won for impressive marketing feats over the past year.
The SEER Interactive team won the Searchlight Agency Growth Award. (And no wonder – check out this blog post by Wil to learn more about the ways they’re using Searchlight workspaces to get crucial insight for their client services.)
Who else walked out with a coveted Searchie? We wish we could tell you all the stories behind these victories:
- Rookie of the Year: Penn Foster
- SEO Business Impact Award: Citi
- Searchlight Power User Award: QVC
- Searchlight Agency Partner Excellence Award: Prime Visibility
- Excellence in Team Enablement Award: Dell Software
- The Excellence in Web Presence Management Award: Brooks Brothers
- Best Scaled SEO Program: PCG Consulting
- Global SEO: Danaher
4) Content VS. Marketing — Skyword & Mastercard
This got people’s attention: “Content Marketing is inherently flawed.”
Adam Broitman, Mastercard’s VP of Global Digital Marketing, told a packed room of C3 attendees that sometimes content and marketing are actually at odds.
In this popular session, he and Tom Gerace, the CEO of Skyword, parsed the many reasons many brands are disappointed with their content’s ROI: they’re not putting search and social media at the center of those efforts. Read CMO.com’s writeup for more info on this awesome session.
5) 5 World-class Nonprofits Get SEO Grants!
During Seth Besmertnik’s keynote, we revealed this year’s nonprofit recipients of the Conductor Searchlight Grant: Teach For America, human-I-T, Coop Africa, and Kiva. Since C3, we’re happy to add that the National Multiple Sclerosis Society has joined that list!
6) Searchlight 3.0
No C3 is complete without a big reveal, and this year, CEO Seth Besmertnik whipped the curtain off 3 major new Searchlight features: Content Mapping, Channel Insights for YouTube, and Search Experience Tracking.
This was a massively important moment for our company, and we’re excited to see what you, digital marketers, have to say about some of the capabilities we’re introducing to the industry. (Read about them in Seth’s blog post to get a more nuanced look.)
7) Hanging Out with Some of the Best People You’ve Ever Met
We made new friends. We met some of the world’s finest web presence mangers, SEOs and content marketers. Some of us were even lucky enough to encounter our doppelgangers. (Looking at you, Rob from GigMasters, and Casey, Conductor engineer extraordinaire.)
The best part of C3 is always, unquestionably the people – and this year was full of brilliant, friendly marketers who wanted to talk about the buyer’s journey over a game of jumbo jenga – how cool is that?
What else got you talking and tweeting at C3 2014? Comment & watch the C3 video recap here.