In October, I was fortunate enough to attend the International Search Summit conference in New York, which was run by WebCertain. For those who have not yet attended an International Search Summit, make sure you put it as your New Year resolution for 2013.
Here are four reasons to attend:
1) Meet International SEOs
I met many international SEOs and those in the search industry at ISS. There were many from the US as it was being held in New York, but there were also representatives from other parts of Europe, those working agency or client side and even those working in the Middle East and Africa. Dubai has many international SEO companies, including Sekari who I met when I was in New York.
2) Learn industry updates
Webcertain organises key search professionals from the industry to present their work and the latest updates in international search. I was keen to find out how different international SEO was to national SEO. Andy Atkins-Krüger started the day with a checklist for international search success followed by Bill Hunt who spoke about developing a successful international SEO program. Many of the speakers had clear take aways which we, as the audience could go back to the office and implement straight away.
3) Discover Google does not have a monopoly everywhere
Being based in Europe or the US, everyone talks about Google and optimising for this monopoly search engine. It was therefore interesting to go to a conference and learn about the other search engines such as Yandex (for Russia) and Baidu (for China). For all the search engines, being present in not just one market, is important. For Baidu and Yandex to grow, they know they have to expand into other markets and with other partners. Yandex partners with Apple for Maps. Yandex will be the map provider for Apple devices going forward. Baidu also released their own smartphone. Many Chinese users do not have access to the internet through their desktop and can only use their mobile, therefore they will be using the Baidu search engine.
4) Expand your skills
For those looking for new opportunities outside of their domestic markets, attending international search conferences is the first step towards working overseas. For English speaking marketers, it can be difficult to work across different languages. However in countries such as Dubai and Australia, where the main business language is English, it allows people the opportunity to work in a different market without the need to learn another language.