Over the last 10 years I have thoroughly enjoyed speaking at conferences around the world. My first real out of the UK speaking gig was in Vancouver. It was great. I took the chance to ski down Blackcombe Mountain and see Vancouver Island. I haven’t been to that one for a long time though – so I don’t know how it fairs. If you are trying to get onto the speaker circuit, some conferences are better than others. Here are my fabourites:
No 6: SMX Sweden. This is a lovely conference. I enjoyed it when it was SES driven and I am still enjoying it now. Mostly for the conference food, which is the best I have had consistently. I always feel saddened when I bust a gut to do a presentation because I know the audience paid a lot… then the audience sits down to eat a sandwich from a box. Not in Stockholm though!
No 5. Affiliates4U Amsterdam. To be fair, this conference hasn’t even happened yet, but having seen just how professionally run A4U was run at London Excel (which doesn’t make my list due to the location), this looks to be a great show for speakers.
No. 4: SMX Advanced. [Edit-add: The one in Seattle] As a speaker in pure business terms, this must be seen as a pinnacle. I have to be honest – I’ve not been a speaker here. It’s a conference where everyone in the room seems to have been a speaker at some conference or other… so getting a speaking gig here is a bit rarer than some others.
No. 3: Pubcon, Las Vegas. I like the diversity of speakers, attendees and sponsors here. Some people think that this conference was for “mom and pop” companies but they really should have gone to the last few. After one talk I did, the people that came up to ask questions and shake my hands included Facebook and Ebay. It’s also in Las Vegas… if you like that sort of thing…
No. 2: SES San Jose. It’s huge… and it’s really nice and warm. For a Brit, we are not used to either. The hotels have massive pools and the whole town seems to be connected to WiFi. You also get to go to the Google Dance… although I have heard that may be coming to an end 🙁
No. 1: RIMC in Iceland. You just cannot beat this conference as a speaker. I have gone twice and I have been taken to Hot sulpher baths, Massive Ice-covered waterfalls and Geysirs. I’ve been to Viking villages and eaten everything from Argentinian steak to rotting fish. The rotting fish was voluntary. It is THE event that speakers go for not as a means to an end, but as an end in itself.
Tata for now.