Just over a year ago, when Eximo was in its infancy, I was asked to speak at an event in Dublin. Speaking at events has long formed part of my business development plan so it seemed like a no-brainer.
I’d done a few events, got plenty of great feedback and worked hard to improve, so being approached by a big event in Dublin to speak made me feel like the world was at my feet!
Well, it didn’t quite work out that way.
The event wasn’t the best organised shindig I’ve ever attended. I should’ve realised something was wrong when I got stuck talking the Trump’s most devout fan, who had been flown in to speak at the event.
But it got worse. Some bad planning meant half the stages (and there were many) started late. When I got up to do my thing, the event PA cut me off to announce some fancy pants from Facebook was going to start 15 mins early, which meant he was starting in five minutes. At that point, my meagre audience of about 20 thinned down to three, one of whom was the next speaker on and only stayed because he couldn’t leave.
Three people. THREE. It’s not the most humbling professional experience I’ve ever had (I’ll tell you another time about my first meeting with the new chairman of an old employer), but it wasn’t far off.
I’ll admit there was a part of me that wanted to knock it on the head, apologise to the handful of people there and drive straight back north.
Instead, I though fuck it, I’ve come this far, I may as well give this everything, try some new material and see how it goes down.
Once the last people had filed out to see Mr Facebook, I attacked the presentation like I had a full house. I think the three folks enjoyed the fact I gave it everything, even if I felt a bit strange.
There was a big lesson for me that: always give your all.
One of the folks who had stayed wanted to talk about a project they had coming up and thought I’d be a good fit for it. In the end, we didn’t work together on that project, but he did recommend me to speak at another event, where the crowds were bigger and I ended up picking up a client.
It’s not fair to mention the name of the event or the organisers, but it’s safe to say that whole thing was a shambles and I won’t be back!
There is a reason why I wanted to delve back into the archives and discuss the Disaster In Dublin (as its now officially known) and that’s SearchLove London.
Almost a year to the day after the Disaster In Dublin, I heard back from Distilled, organisers of SearchLove, that I’d been selected to speak at the event. If you’ve heard of SearchLove, you’ll know how exciting this is! If you haven’t, you’ll just have to take my word for it!
SearchLove takes place in London, Boston and San Diego each year and features a who’s who of experts from around the world. People like Rand Fishkin, Joanna Lord, Greg Gifford and Larry Kim have featured and the delegates come from companies like Adidas, ebay, skyscanner and Red Bull. It’s a big old show.
The line up for this year includes three community speakers of which I’m one. The others are Laura Hogan and Luke Carthy and we came through a rigorous selection process from 50 to be the chosen three! We’re covering a diverse range of subjects, including optimising for products you don’t sell anymore and brand protection. I’ll be digging into a subject close to my heart (or should that be a subject close to my head? I’m not sure): psychology.
The title of my presentation will be People Are Predictable. It’s a run through a few different studies that show how the mind works and then a bunch of practical tips for how marketers can use this to improve what they do.
If that sounds like something you’d be interested in seeing, then you should come along on the 15th and 16th of October. The full line up is amazing and well worth the two days out of the office. My insider info from Distilled tells me there are a few tickets remaining and for reading this far, you get to cash in a discount code! If you follow this link, you’ll get 10% off the ticket price. What more could you want?