San Jose, that wonderful location in California that plays host to thousands of search engine marketing professionals each and every August, played host yet again this year and offered up absolutely beautiful weather. All while back home (south eastern PA & NJ) the folks suffered through pouring rain and insufferable humid heat.
Along with the weather, there was great new sessions and updated sessions that have been around for a while. Probably the most talked about session had to be "Are Paid Links Evil". I wasn't present for that session *gasp*, but I was promptly filled in by SE Roundtable's coverage, TheLisa's Coverage, and Matt McGee's Review. I have to say, Matt Cutts is a stand up guy and a brave one for being on a panel that was basically there to refute all he was to speak on. However, I still have to say, can Google really classify what a payment for a link is?
So what about the other sessions? My colleague, Bill Slawski and also PR Guru Greg Jarboe spoke on the Universal and Blended search panel. I think that was likely the best panel I attended, even though it managed to garner me a bit more work for my presentation on Images and Search Engines the next day. I also attended and blogged two sessions for Barry and Tamar and their SE Roundtable coverage of San Jose - PR Train Wrecks and Meet the Video Search Engines.
Now, regardless of what Dave Naylor's blog thinks, there are definitely quite a few women in Internet Marketing. Just as Mike Grehan, Lee Odden, Kevin Heisler, Jim Hedger, Kevin Ryan and Danny Sullivan. Why ask them? These fine gentleman joined close to 50 women and/or sponsored part of luncheon that was held on Monday. Third Door Media, a partial sponsor, also gave away a ticket to SMX West in February. Caroyln Shelby from Elkay's Plumbing Production Division, also sponsored another prize of a faucet or sink of the winner's choice! Thanks to both of them!
I really wanted to share with the SMG audience something that Lee Odden shared with me and asked me to share with the group at lunch. Lee wanted to thank the women of the industry, in particularly Kim Krause Berg and Jill Whalen. He feels that without them and their influence on the industry he wouldn't have gotten to where he is with Top Rank.
BTW, I'm a Dave Naylor fangirl, and for SES Chicago, maybe I can ask the women if we can have Dave attend to show him we really do exist? What do you think, should we invite him on the stipulation he wears a skirt and heels? :)
So what else happened? More sessions, more fun. Including a great lunch put on by Robert Clough (yes he does exist!) and Jenn Laycock from Search Engine Guide. Robert & Jenn put together a great luncheon for all of us bloggers and thanked us for helping out SEG by rewarding us with these cool laptop bags - complete with the puppy logo. Thank you Robert and Jenn for a delicious lunch and for the chance for all of us to finally meet face to face!
Who can forget the Google Dance? I certainly won't, apparently this will be made even harder since there is now DVD proof that I did Karaoke. My local friends might use this against me, as I don't really do Karoake -seriously! Saturdays' I can be found at a local hangout where there is Karaoke, but I never sing - when asked I reply, "only if its a group and it's Loveshack."
Those words came to haunt me as Scott Orth comes up to me and asks, you want to do Karaoke with us? I reply with my usual line (see above) - both applied and I was roped in. The guys all got into it as did Giselle Abramovich from DM News, complete with wigs, blow up guitars and mics and I think even the cop from the village people joined in.
Now by now you're probably wondering, did the annual Search Bash by Webmaster Radio (Daron & Brandy) include sumo wrestling again? Why yes, yes it did! But that's not all, Sammy Davis, Jr., Marilyn Monroe and Dean Martin all strolled the floor to entertain the crowd too. As usual fun was had, even by Neil Patel who lost to Ken "Cheesboy" Jurina (look Ken - no cheese on these seats).
SES finally wrapped up on Thursday with some great sessions, including User Generated Content, and Wikipedia and SEO. I have to say, all in all, this SES was really beneficial session wise, it's been a while since I've had trouble deciding which session I wanted to attend.
Lastly, I need to give a shout out to my pal DeAnn Seneff, who was a SES Newbie and traveled with me like a champ all around SES and San Jose. Check out DeAnn's new blog SEO New Kid, as she sets out, brand new into the world of in-house search marketing!
Check out my flickr photo stream for more SES San Jose 2007 pictures.