So Affiliate Summit decided to do something new this year with how they select which sessions they will have at the show. Instead of people submitting their panel ideas and session ideas, they have had everyone submit their ideas for sessions and they are letting the Marketing Community vote on them. (I’ll post a link a little bit later in this post and how to vote since it is a little bit tricky and confusing). Not only is this kind of a cool way to decide which sessions should be at the show, but it allows the attendees and people who want to attend but can’t make it, to have a say in how the show should be run, at least content wise, and also show what the Marketing community finds valuable. There is both good and bad in this, but we’ll focus on the good for this post.
What I like about this process is that many people cannot go to the show, but they can still benefit from it. Just because they couldn’t make it to Affiliate Summit East doesn’t mean that they don’t have questions and didn’t want to attend. By enabling them to help pick the sessions, they can still get to have a say in what is at the show based on what they wanted to learn and still get to benefit from it by buying the videos after the show is over. I think it is a great idea and can also help to make the show more relevant for the attendees since they can help to decide what they will get to learn by attending sessions that they chose. Like I said there is also bad by people gaming it but Missy and Shawn have already taken that into consideration and I believe the Advisory Board also will vote on all of the winners (which I really hope they can also veto certain sessions considering there is one that is all about how to use adware which I am 100% opposed to and am shocked that it was even allowed to be listed as a possible session).
Anyways, the thought is great and I love the idea behind it but the site you go to to vote is fairly confusing so here is how you vote and then I’ll go into some sessions that I think everyone can benefit from and that I would love to see there.
- First you go to the voting site.
- Then you click on the grey arrow next to the session name in the list, or you can click on the session name to go to the session page.
- Now click on the grey arrow, if you didn’t do that in the step above, and you’ll be taken to the register page.
- Fill out the form (Email address is optional) and click register.
- Now you will be taken back to the large list or to the session page that you selected.
- Click the grey arrow and if it turns blue then you voted. If it is grey then you need to click it again.
You can also leave a comment as to why you want to see this session or some feedback on the speaker as well. This is not a place to bash anyone though, even if you disagree with the topic. If you disagree then just don’t vote for it and vote for other sessions to push it down the list so it doesn’t rank as high as sessions you would like to see there.
Sessions I would vote for and have voted for.
My session, Are you serious? Merchant Mistakes.
The purpose of this session is to go over some common mistakes that Merchants Make. It will address some of the issues that I see as issues and the reasons why these are issues and common mistakes. I’ll also analyze them and give possible solutions or reminders as to how to prevent them or avoid them. Some mistakes that may be covered include things like Limiting your program to 100 Affiliates, Not including your Merchant name in the subject line of newsletters, sending out or sharing top Affiliate’s sites, partnering with Adware Only or strictly PPV Affiliates, Just because it is “opt in” doesn’t mean it is right, Not having secondary tracking in case the main tracking goes down, etc…
Podcasting 101 is another session that I think could be very valuable. It is being run by three very smart and influential people who are very creative and all know how to build and keep an audience. This is a definitely session to keep an eye on.
Beyond Business Cards. This is a definite must vote for panel. It has some of the smartest people in Affiliate Marketing on it including my personal favorite Summit speakers Lisa Riolo and Lisa Picarelli, one of the most talented Artists and Marketers Jen Goode, an all around amazing and talented person Karen Garcia, not to mention a topic that is pretty cool.
Trademark Bidding in Affiliate Marketing. I have mixed feelings about this one but I do have respect for some of the people on the panel, whether I agree with their opinion or not I still respect them and their opinions, so it would be interesting to see what they say. We have all heard the arguments a million times but sometimes we need to hear them again and watch people debate them.
Affiliate Program Case Studies. This is another one that I hope makes it. The session was in Vegas I believe and shared case studies and examples of different programs in Affiliate Marketing. Melanie Seery is an incredible person and she can definitely give some of the most informative sessions at a show. She is also the head of Affiliate Advocacy which is a leading resource for Affiliate Tax Laws.
Creating a stronger and balanced Affiliate Terms and Conditions. This is something almost every Merchant has questions about and something most Affiliates will have disagreements about. This panel will discuss the good and the bad about TOS and how you may want to rethink your own Terms and Conditions if you are a Merchant or Network.
SEO Clinic. Rae Hoffman is one of the best SEOs and runs one of my favorite blogs. This is a definite must have panel, especially since I didn’t see Will Reynolds listed.
Bloggers and connecting with your Audience. Although I don’t agree with some of the people on this panel on certain topics, each of them found a way to build a huge following and there is a lot we can all learn, both good and bad from them, so this is a must see on my list of sessions I would probably attend.
Strategies for Marketing to Women. If there is an expert panel at Marketing to Women, this is it. Tricia is an expert on this topic and she picked a couple of great people to have on her panel. I highly recommend voting for this one as well. Especially if your products are female oriented and/or the main shopper for your products are women.
These are only my opinions on sessions I would like to see. It doesn’t mean you will like them or that they are good for you. I also did not look through the entire list so I am sure there are more I would have probably recommended. However, just because I think they are some of the best sessions on the list doesn’t mean they are the best for you or the only good ones. I encourage you to look through all of the sessions listed and choose which ones you would like to see. Also, please feel free to comment here on which ones you like and why.