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Optimise Your SEO Career: Getting the Most out of Conferences with Gemma Houghton
Episode 220th October 2022 • The SEO Mindset • Sarah & Tazmin
00:00:00 00:38:37

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In this week's episode of the podcast, Sarah chats with Gemma Houghton all about attending conferences including benefits, how to make the most of them and more.

For 15 years, Gemma Houghton has been immersed in international digital marketing – from running Webcertain’s International Search Summit events, interviewing some of the leading global experts in all aspects of digital for Webcertain.tv, to supporting client projects and campaigns. She’s seen the good, the bad and the ugly of international websites and campaigns, how the industry and the role of the marketer has evolved and the common challenges and frustrations facing global digital marketers across the globe. Outside of the wonderful world of events and digital marketing, Gemma loves travel, food and musicals and now she has a two year old, getting a full night's sleep.

Where to find Gemma:

@gemhoughton on Twitter

Gemma's Website

Gemma on YouTube

About 'The SEO Mindset' Podcast

Build your inner confidence and thrive.

The SEO Mindset is a weekly podcast that will give you actionable tips, guidance and advice to help you not only build your inner confidence but to also thrive in your career.

Each week we will cover topics specific to careers in the SEO industry but also broader topics too including professional and personal development.

Your hosts are Life Coach Tazmin Suleman and SEO Manager Sarah McDowell, who between them have over 20 years of experience working in the industry.

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Transcripts

Sarah:

Hello and welcome to another episode of the SEO Mindset podcast. The podcast brought to you by myself, Sarah McDowell and the wonderful Tazmin Sulleman, where we give actionable, growth tips and advice so you can optimise your career and not just the algorithms. So this week, I have an awesome guest joining me to talk all about the benefits of attending conferences. So this week, I have the wonderful Gemma Houghton, who for 15 years has been immersed in get my words around that one, for 15 years has been immersed in international digital marketing. From running web, certain's international search summit events, interviewing some of the leading global experts in all aspects of digital for websites and TV, to supporting client projects and campaigns, she's seen the good, the bad and the ugly of international websites and campaigns, how the industry and the role of the marketers evolved, and the common challenges and frustrations facing global digital marketers across the globe. Hello, Gemma.

Gemma:

Hi, Sarah. Hi, thank you so much for having me.

Sarah:

Thank you so much for giving up your time and discussing everything to do with conferences for the next half an hour with me.

Gemma:

Very happy to do it. Yeah, absolutely. One of my favourite topics.

Sarah:

How are we doing? Because obviously, last week we had brightonSEO and we got to meet in person, which was great. But, yeah, have you recovered from brightonSEO? Because it's an amazing event, right? But quite intense.

Gemma:

Yeah, I think that's the case for most conferences, actually. They are quite there's so much to take in, there's so much that goes on. It's a really busy, packed few days, which is always really fun, really interesting. But, yeah, it does take you a few days to decompress afterwards and process everything that you've kind of learned and experienced and talked to. But, yeah, it was a great event, as usual, and lovely to get to see people and meet you, of course, in person, which makes doing this today much nicer.

Sarah:

Yeah, definitely. Because I think definitely in the SEO industry, like, you meet and talk to people a lot online, don't you? So it's really amazing when you have an event in person where you get everyone together. I mean, I loved it and I was exhausted afterwards. I mean, some of it was self inflicted. I will put my hands up and say, I think on the Thursday night, I ended up in Popworld until 2am in the morning.

Gemma:

Yeah, that is always a risk. Always a risk.

Sarah:

I just get too caught up in it all and I just want to be part of everything.

Gemma:

But that is part of the experience as well, isn't it? And part of the whole being there. And that's fun and that gets you to enjoy the time.

Sarah:

100%. So I've obviously said what today's topic is going to be about. So I think a really sensible place for us to start is why should we be attending conferences. So what do you find that you get out of attending things like Brighton SEO or other conferences?

Gemma:

Yeah, so I suppose partially from my perspective, it's maybe a little bit different because we run an event ourselves, so I'm always kind of going with the flight coming out of the event head on, like, what are they doing that we could be doing? What's better? What don't you think is so great, and maybe just trying to meet people from the perspective of potentially other speakers or sponsors and that kind of thing. But generally, as for conferences, I think there probably are two really main reasons that they're good for people in general. So one we've touched on, which is meeting people in person. So I think often you'll have spoken to people online, followed people online, read content from people, whatever it is, and actually being able to meet, meet them in person and have conversations is really valuable, as well as just people who you meet there without planning to or without any prior knowledge of them. But it's just a great way to kind of get talking to people who otherwise wouldn't, and get to know people, make connections that are either just nice to have and people who you can connect with and kind of share things from or learn from online, or also people who maybe you even work with or develop kind of stronger relationships with. But it's definitely a really good way to do that. And then the other main reason is obviously learning. You know, that's what the conferences are also there for, and it's about putting on great talks and great ways for people to kind of build their knowledge. And I think this applies regardless of where you are in your kind of career or how long you've been in the industry. For most people, there's still going to be things you can learn, even if you've been going for a while. I mean, some people who say they probably don't learn a lot, but most people, there's always something you can pick up, even if it's just a slightly different approach to something or a different way of looking at it. But certainly for people who are newer and haven't been in the industry for so long, they're really great for just seeing what people are doing, understanding the different approaches out there, understanding the different kind of different channels even, that people use that maybe you haven't come across. So there's a lot that you can learn from and gain in terms of your own knowledge and then being able to apply that as well.

Sarah:

Definitely. And I think you make a good point there. So it's not just about learning in the sessions. But as you're talking to the exhibitors. Seeing what they're doing and what new tools and resources are available. But also just having conversations with people who work in SEO because they might have different experiences than what you might have or they might have tried something or thought about something in a different angle that you've never even thought about. And also, you don't know who you end up talking to. Like, for example, just before leaving writing SEO, I managed to bump into John Mueller. He was like, I don't know. How would you explain who John Mueller is for people who don't know him? He's like the spokesperson of Google, right? Yeah. So he works at Google, and he does a lot of interaction between SEOs and explaining how things work or answering questions from SEO. In regards to Google, I bumped into him, and I had a conversation about whether or not Google transcribes podcasts audio, right? And that was just a conversation as I was exiting the building, and it was a quick two minute, three minute, five minute conversation. They got me thinking about things.

Gemma:

I think that's a great thing. You kind of pick up little nuggets, and I think there can sometimes be this feeling that you've got to go to a conference and come away with notebooks full of amazing new ideas that totally blow your mind. And yes, sometimes you might, and that's great, but actually, just sometimes one or two things, you can pick up one thing that, if it relates to something, you're working on it maybe if you've been really struggling with something or finding it difficult to achieve something and you get one bit of information that helps you do that, then it's been worth it. It could save you hours and hours of time. It could save you lost revenues. If you figure out a way to do something quicker, it doesn't have to be that you come away having learned everything in a million things and something from every talk. As long as you pick up something useful, then you can that's great as well. I think the other thing that it's always about learning new things, but actually what the conference can be really great for is validating what you already know, because people really doubt yourself. And if you work, especially if you work maybe in a small team, or maybe you're the only person even doing SEO or doing marketing in a business, or you're very much in that little bubble of your company and how you do things, or what you learning from the people just very closely around you. And often you can kind of wonder, am I doing it right? Do I really know what I'm doing? And I've been there before where I've come out of a talk and thought I didn't really necessarily learn anything particularly new, but what I have done is kind of consolidated that what I'm doing here is right, or that I'm following an approach that others do, and that sometimes gives you then the confidence to keep going with something you're working on. And so that's equally as valuable as coming away with something new, I think.

Sarah:

100%, because that validation. A lot like you hear SEOs have this imposter syndrome, or I doubt myself all the time, am I doing the right thing? Does this make sense? But coming away from a talk where it does validate, or even just as you're in conversation, you get someone's opinion and they're like, yes, I've done that. Like all that makes sense, and that's only going to make you feel confident. So when you go back to your business or whatever project you're working on, freelance, you know that you've got that confidence that what you're doing is where it makes sense and you're not.

Gemma:

And often as a marketing team or person or the SEO. You might have to justify to others in the business who don't really know about it while you're doing something and actually being able to say. Well, actually I was at a conference last month or last weekend. And this was talked about. Or there was an example of how X companies done it and this is what we're trying to do here. Can also really be helpful as well. Because it's then not just gives you that extra ammunition when you're having conversations.

Sarah:

Yeah, because lots of the talks as well give like case studies, don't they? Or examples. So, yeah, that's a great way to sort of then go back to stakeholders, your boss, other people. Yeah, awesome. Okay, so obviously when we're talking about conferences, there are conferences that are in person and there's ones that are virtual. Now, my thoughts on this, because you could be like, well, what's better? And I think there's benefits and disadvantages of both. So, for example, I can see virtual conferences being really good for those who aren't too comfortable with a conference setting. Like they get a bit anxious around people, especially like big conferences where there's loads of people, right, but then on the flip side, in person, it's all part of it, it goes into the experience, right, and you're taking yourself away from the company, so you can focus on all of these things. Would you agree that there's like disadvantages and benefits?

Gemma:

Absolutely, I think there definitely is. So obviously we only ever ran in person conferences, really. We've done webinars and things. We only ever did in person conferences covered like everybody, we were like, oh, well, we better do something virtually. So we started doing some virtual conferences and there are definitely benefits to both. So, like you mentioned, some people just aren't comfortable in big crowds, and especially since COVID, obviously even that's heightened for some people who really still aren't ready to travel. And also some people just can't travel, whether it's financial, whether it's health, whether it's family, whatever it is, it's not practical to fly to another place, or if the conference is not near where you live, it could be several days out and money. So I think it makes it more accessible for people, definitely. The other good thing about online is that you can dip in and out. Maybe sometimes you don't want to go for two full days to an event and attend every talk. There might just be two talks that you really want to hear, so you can just kind of dip into those. So that's good. I think the disadvantage is that we're already on computers a lot you see behind a screen, so I think it can be quite hard to really focus on somebody talking online for a long time. So one webinar an hour you can do, but when it's hour after hour, it can start to become a bit hard to kind of focus. And with the best will in the world, you end up checking your emails or just doing something alongside it and you don't focus, I think, necessarily, or it's harder to keep that focus. And you mentioned about the in person, it's kind of a break from the business and that is another big benefit of going to a conference. I think that it just gets you out of your kind of space, yet you might have to cheque your email or pick up something on you there, but generally you're kind of out for the day you're not working or the week, whatever it is, and you can totally focus on being there. Whereas if you join online, I think for a lot of people, it feels like you're not really at a conference, so therefore you still should be working alongside it. And then you don't necessarily get to really absorb all the information.

Sarah:

But I think that's where mindset can help, right? So even if it's online, if you block that time out in your calendar like you would in person, or you sort of say, like, I'm not available, and you have the willpower, you turn notifications off and with your point as well is like you're in front of a screen and it can be overwhelming. There's things that you can do where, like between the talks, take a break, right? Stand outside, get some fresh air.

Gemma:

Yeah. I think it's really important to treat it as if you were actually there. But I think that's something that people don't do very well.

Sarah:

Definitely, because it's really easy to get distracted, right? And when I'm away from the business, I feel more ease of not always having to check, but when I'm online, because I can see that notification, I'm like, oh, why is that?

Gemma:

So I definitely think turning things off, you know, shutting down everything and focusing on it is really important. You do, of course, miss the networking option. So for some people that's fine. They're not interested in that, they don't want to talk to anybody, so it's perfect. But if you do, I think some platforms are great. The one we've used is really set up for networking and it encourages that and it has tables where you can sit and everyone can talk is on that table and it's good, but people don't really use it that much, to be honest. Like generally, a lot of people, as soon as the talk ends, they do turn off the camera, partly maybe because they need that break in between the talks, but also because it just can be a bit awkward. You don't know who you're going to be talking to and then maybe the internet connections lagging, so the conversation is a bit awkward. All of these can, I think, put people off. So with the online, I think the networking element is less likely to happen and if it does, it doesn't feel as natural as just standing in a room with people, having a conversation and letting that flow. So I do think that is where in person really has its benefits. But again, it's all personal preference and I think it's great that there are options for everybody so that you can do a bit of everything.

Sarah:

So to those who are a little more introverted or they find crowds or people a little overwhelming, but they want to go to in person, what tips would you suggest for people to deal with that situation?

Gemma:

So I think it is much more common now for people to openly say, like, I don't like this, I'm not comfortable, I need my space. I think maybe even a few years ago it was almost like nobody would have ever said that, but now I think people are and I think you absolutely can go to a conference and not have to get involved in everything. So if you really don't want to do any networking, you can still go in person. You don't have to go to the networking drinks, you don't have to go to the exhibition hall, you don't have to go to the lunch that's been organised, you can just go to the talks and then go for a walk, go do some sightseeing and go back to your hotel. And that's absolutely fine. I think if you want to do a bit of everything, it's just about picking and choosing, maybe. So if you know you're going to be overwhelmed, you know that you can't kind of cope for a long time, choose the one networking event that you think suits you most. Maybe it's kind of straight after the conference in the venue, rather than having to go to a different venue where it's maybe louder and a bit busier. Maybe it's just a lunch that's organised on a particular topic or by a particular group so that you do something, but you're not kind of involved in everything and I just think you're not feeling like you are duty bound to attend things and to have a great time and be posting pictures of the bar at 03:00 in the morning. If you don't want to do that, that's absolutely fine. If you do, it's also fine.

Sarah:

As we've discussed, not everyone has to stay in Popworld until 2am in the morning.

Gemma:

If they want to, they can. If they don't, they don't. And I think there's a lot more people that just say, no, I've had a good day, now I'm going home, and that's hotel wherever, and I'll come back.

Sarah:

So I think here what we're saying is boundaries have boundaries, stick to them. And don't feel bad for saying no. You can say no to stuff like and also make sure make sure you're factoring in time to recharge your batteries, however that is. So with brightonSEO, you've got the pier, you've got the beach, go and stand and look at the waves for a bit. Like whatever helps you or whatever you want to do.

Gemma:

Just have a pause from it and take that time. And I think it's just not feeling pressured that you have to be doing what you think other people are doing, because the pictures you see and the people sharing on social are the ones who are loving that and who are out doing it. The people who have gone back to the hotel to have a quiet evening aren't really sharing it, but there's people doing it. You won't be the only one, and you just have to do whatever is right. And I think another good thing can be having somebody there. So I think for a lot of people, it can feel overwhelming. If you don't know many people and you kind of going on your own, you suddenly feel, well, I'm in this huge space, everyone seems to know each other and it's all and how do I kind of navigate that? So I think if you can go with a colleague or a friend or somebody else who you know, who you can kind of attend together, that can be just great. So you don't feel on your own and you can kind of work together to get involved in things if you want to, or connecting with people online first and arranging to meet people, as it doesn't have to be somebody you know well. But I've seen it before for quite a few events where people kind of post in the weeks before saying, I'm coming on my own. Does anybody want to kind of buddy up and meet up to go together? Or if you are in any kind of groups, if there's a community for the event, or if, say, you know, for example, women in Tekteo community, there was a lot of people from that community at Brighton put a post in saying, you know, I'm coming. Does anybody want to meet the night before just to get to know each other, or does somebody want to meet and go to the conference together? And I would be very surprised in most cases if you don't find somebody else who's really thinking, oh my goodness, I'm here on my own too. And just having somebody with you can really help that overwhelming feeling that you don't feel like on your own and you've just got someone to sit with or talk to or get a coffee with. And that can often help to lead to you getting involved in more conversations if you want to, because you don't feel quite so kind of exposed.

Sarah:

Yes, 100%. And you make such a good point about how you said earlier about those people who are going home and having a loan time and just sitting in there, sitting in their hotel room, right. They're not going to necessarily be sharing that, but it doesn't mean it's not happening. So we are going to take a short break and when we come back, we're going to be discussing more about conferences, like how to decide which ones to go to and how to make the most out of them, which I think we've already kind of covered, but I feel like, yeah, we're going to talk about more stuff. So, yes, we will be right back. We are back. With all those conferences out there, how do we decide which ones to go to and like, how many should you be going to a year?

Gemma:

I think this is where we get to use the classic SEO answer. It depends. Yeah, I think it really does depend on what it is that you want to get out of the conference. So there are a lot of conferences, a lot of really good ones. So I think it's really thinking about what it is that you want. So some are very niche and specific. So I think if you are interested in a really specific area, so there's obviously kind of industry specific things. Like there's quite a few around the SaaS industry, travel, that kind of thing. So maybe if you're in those industries, you might want to go to something that you know you're going to be meeting people and hearing talks that are all focused on your industry equally. There are events like ours that are focused very specifically on an area within that. So international, for example. So if you're not doing if you're working on a very local bakery, trying to get that more visibility, you're not going to come to our event because it's not going to be useful for you. If you're trying to launch new websites in different markets, it would be really useful. So I think it's looking at the agendas and thinking, is there something very specific I want? If it's something more general and you're more kind of just looking for general talks and quite a wide range. Then obviously there are things bright and SMX. You've got quite a lot of different events that talk about these topics and then it's probably down to maybe looking at the agendas and seeing which top talks resonate most. Maybe thinking about just logistics. Which ones are actually you can get to. Which ones you've heard good things about and you want to go. Or you know that there's going to be people there and even where you want to go and visit and you can tag a weekend triple up. There's many reasons you can make a decision. And actually it probably doesn't matter that much in that you're going to get something, as long as it's one that's in your kind of remote industry, you will find things that are useful, you will meet nice people there. So I think it is about what have you heard about what do you want to get out of it and then make the call on that. And in terms of how many to go to, again, there's not really an answer, is it? I think if you've got specific challenges coming up in areas that you really need to learn more about. You might want to go to more. Or if you're going with the purpose of networking. Of kind of building up your client base. Or you're kind of trying to maybe you're going out freelancing. So you're trying to kind of build your network and those kinds of things. Then obviously you might go to more just as a way of meeting people and getting involved more. But I think it really depends on availability. It will depend on budget, it will depend on a lot of things. And there are of course, online things you can do, loads of webinars, loads of blogs and guides and videos and things. So it's not as if it's the only place that you can learn or indeed meet people. So I think it is just about how much you enjoy them, what budgets you've got, what your goals are, and then go from there..

Sarah:

Well, you've got to be realistic with projects and how big your team is and stuff like that, right? So, yeah, it does depend. I know it's the answer that SEO like to say. So we've kind of been talking about how you get the most during. So you said about like messaging people to connect with or like things that you do during. So what I'm going to ask is three tips. I think three three is a good number, right? Yeah, three tips for ways to get them, for ways to get the most out of events before, during and after. So three tips for each one.

Gemma:

Three for each. Okay.

Sarah:

Is that too much?

Gemma:

No, we can do it. I'm just checking out. Okay. So before, I think the first one is think about why you're going and have a clear goal in mind. So if that goal is just to have a nice time and meet people, that's fine, but just know what it is that you're going for. Because if you are going, it can be you can think, I'll go, and if you don't have a bit of a plan, it can be quite easy to just get swept up in what's going on and then come back and think, oh, I didn't actually do so. If it is you want to speak to certain vendors to see what solutions they have. Make sure you've got that. Do you do that? Make sure you know which talks you definitely want to go to and where they are and when they're on so that you can plan it. And then the other one I think before is just yet try maybe reach out to some people and build that a bit of a connection before you go, so that it makes it more of an enjoyable experience. Then once you're there. My top tip definitely about the learning side is about asking questions and making sure you get the information you've gone to find. So it can be quite overwhelming for a lot of people to ask questions in sessions. In cases like at Brighton, some of the talks there just wasn't time or the rooms are too big to even allow that. So that doesn't happen. But I really think if you go to a talk and it's interesting, it's something relevant and you want to know more, there's something that you either haven't fully understood or you want to kind of dig into more. You'd like a bit more examples of how it can be used differently. Ask the question because you'll regret not. This is the time for you to really get information that can really help you make a difference for the work you're doing. Save you time, save you stress, make you money. So don't shy away from asking questions. And if you don't get the chance, but you don't feel comfortable doing it in front of the whole group, if you can find a speaker afterwards, depending on the size of the event, and ask them in person or connect with them online, they will undoubtedly have shared where you can follow them on social. And I've never ever met a speaker yet who isn't happy when people follow up after their talk. Speakers want to hear what you thought of it. If you've got a question that you found their talk industry and you want to know more, that's great for them. They're going to be thrilled about that and they want to help as well. They want to feel like they've added value, so they're not going to mind, they're going to be happy. So ask that question. Very rarely might they not reply and maybe that's probably just because they're busy or they haven't seen it. I really think that's the worst that could happen. But most likely you'll get a reply to share some resources or share some examples and that could really help you. So don't feel like, oh, they wouldn't want to hear from me or I can't ask that question. Ask the question.

Sarah:

Yes.

Gemma:

So that, I think the top tip. And then the other one is just to if you can if you want to, don't let feeling like you don't know people or you're not kind of very good at SEO or you're not worthy of it, stop you from getting involved. Because that's not how it works. It's not a case that people only want to talk to people who've got ten years experience and written this blog post. So don't feel that you can't go to something or get involved because you just knew or you don't know a lot. You haven't got anything to add because you will have and you've got yourself to add and it's just about meeting people, getting there. So find ways to do it that make you more comfortable. Like I said, maybe joining someone through a group that you're part of or smaller lunches or things, but don't feel that you can't get involved because you don't already know everybody because that's also not true and it will mean that you don't get as much out of it as you could have done.

Sarah:

Yes, great tips. 100% agree with all of them and yeah, definitely the last one because there's been times where I'm like, yeah, why do people care about what I think or what I say? But then that's not the attitude to have because we're all working on different things together, we've all got our own experiences, thoughts, do you know what I mean? Everyone's valid everyone's opinion.

Gemma:

Again, you don't know who you might meet. You might just meet somebody who you actually do work on very similar projects and you both can really in the future really help each other out. You might meet somebody who will invite you on their podcast. You don't know what might happen. It can be really yeah. So I think it's definitely worth thinking about that and then post event, I think in terms of the learning side of it is try and kind of go through your notes or fairly quickly after because otherwise you will kind of forget things. Just kind of make it doesn't have to be in detail but just thinking through what it is that you've kind of picked up, where you want to follow up, you know, are there any resources the speaker suggested that you really want to go and read? Are there any kind of things you want to test as a result of what you've heard and kind of make a bit of a priority list? You're never going to be able to do everything and all the ideas you've got, but prioritise what makes most sense for your business or your project or your clients and write that down. And another good thing can be to kind of write a blog post or do a presentation for your team internally. Kind of highlighting your key takeaways or what you've learned because that is just a good way sometimes for you to kind of make sure you've understood it all and you crystallise what it is that the key points that you've taken away or what you think is going to have value for your business. And actually sharing that with others also means they get to learn it, which is really nice but also just helps you kind of process it and make sure you kind of understood it all.

Sarah:

And it might even be as easy as all the talks that you went to. Is there one action, just the one action from all the talks or a handful of talks, not all of them that you can implement as well. So, yeah, great advice. I'm very sorry, Gemma, but we are running out of time. Time is flying, isn't it? Okay, so what is the key takeaway you want people to take away from this episode?

Gemma:

I think it's that conferences, learning in general conferences have got different benefits and that you don't need to it doesn't need to be an amazing learning experience that changes your life to make it worth going, that you can get different things out of it, whether it's connections, whether it's learning, whether it's just broadening your perspective and getting out of your kind of bubble and comfort zone. There's loads of different things to get out of them and they are generally very welcoming, very inclusive places, more so now than ever. So you haven't been to one or you want to go and don't feel like you've been able to, then you should do it. And always reach out to people, whether it's the organisers, whether it's other people going, whether it's other people, you know, online, just to kind of try and make that whatever you maybe need from it or whatever is going to give you the most, the best experience. Try and build that in so that you come away having gained something and having had a good time.

Sarah:

Awesome. Great takeaway. So, before wrapping up, I want to end on one very important question. What is one bit of career advice that you think is the best that you've ever received or heard?

Gemma:

I think for me, it has to be about not waiting until you think you're perfect for something or at something to do it. Because this goes back to when I applied for my job at website and I posted about this not that long ago, actually, and it was from my dad. Don't tell him that, he gives good advice. But I was looking at the job description and said, well, I don't know what all this is, I can't do this. And he walked me through it and said, well, could you do this? And basically made me realise that yes, I don't know, didn't know what SEO was in detail and I hadn't done X, Y and Z, but I did have the skills, I did have the experience and here I am now. And I think it's really true that whether it's applying for a job, and we know that especially women, especially underrepresented groups, are less likely to apply for things unless they feel like they're overqualified almost, that you really shouldn't say whether it's a speaking opportunity, whether it's just doing a bit of work that you are worried about sharing or that you don't feel confident in doing. Don't wait until you think you know everything about a topic to try and do something or to write about it, or to do a test on it. Just do it, try it. The worst that happens is it doesn't go brilliantly, but learn from it and mostly you will do well, you'll do fine and it shouldn't put you off doing it. So, yeah, I do think that is probably something that we all need to remember more than we do.

Sarah:

Awesome. I love that advice and I hope people are paying attention. So when we ask people to come on the podcast, they just come. Yes, they put themselves just do it, just do it.

Gemma:

Lovely. Great.

Sarah:

So before finishing, because earlier you teased about that, you have an event, a conference, which is the International Search Summit. So yeah, talk to us, when is it, what is it? Why should we go?

Gemma:

Okay, so, yeah, the International Search Summit is about international search and surprisingly so, it's a conference that we have run at websites since 2008. And so it's been going in a smaller scale but for a long time. And it is always intention has been to just dig into the topics around international SEO, international PPC, generally international marketing that doesn't get covered elsewhere. Because we know that often things are talked quite generally at conferences, but there are quite a lot of nuance, there are quite a lot of issues that are very specific when you are trying to roll out site in multiple languages to different countries, whether it's technical considerations, language, culture, all of those things are quite different. So basically the conference focuses on all of the things you need to think about when you're doing things from an international perspective. So our next one is in Barcelona in November 22 and this is going to be our biggest one yet. We've already outsold previous events, so we're very excited about it. We've got speakers from, I think 16 countries and attendees from 26 countries. So it's an international event in theme and in attendance. So if you are in any way involved in international campaigns and websites, whether it's for your own business or for clients, then it is definitely an event to cheque out in Barcelona the next one. So what can you go wrong? We've got the networking, we've got the really good catering. Excellent. So, yeah, it's just a great event for, again, all of the things we've talked about, learning things, getting the answers to challenges that you've got, whether it's from speakers or from other people attending and just building up your network.

Sarah:

Awesome.

Gemma:

Love to see everyone there.

Sarah:

Everyone. So, yes, in the show notes, I will definitely make sure that we include a link to more information. So a web page where people can go and check that out. So, thank you so much for joining me today. It's been a huge moment.

Gemma:

Yeah, really enjoyed it.

Sarah:

If people want to carry on the conversation, they want to ask you questions or they just want to chitchat, where can they find you?

Gemma:

So the best places are LinkedIn and Twitter probably. So Jenna Howton and Jen Howton on Twitter? So you can find me there. And yeah, very happy to connect with anybody. Love to have a chat. If anyone's got any questions about attending, running, being out, speaking at conferences, whatever it might be. Always happy to talk about that. Hopefully also some other in person events over the next year or so now that we're able to go back to them.

Sarah:

Yes, nice to do things in person and not be locked away, locked up, so and again, I'll make sure that I put all your links to the social things that you said. So wonderful. Right. Thank you very much for joining me, gemma and yes, goodbye.

Gemma:

Thanks a lot. See you soon. Bye.