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Optimization of Search Engine Strategies New York schedule

Search Engine Strategies Conference & Expo 2006 gets underway next week in New York City.One of our clients is planning to attend SES for the first time.

But, after looking at the conference schedule, she realized that n o individual can possibly attend more than 17 of the 70 sessions.That’s because there are generally five sessions being held concurrently from Monday, Feb. 27, through Thursday, Mar. 2.

Plus, she wants to spend some time visiting the expo hall, which will feature 127 sponsors and exhibitors.

Since I’m a frequent speaker at Search Engine Strategies conferences, our client asked me which sessions I would recommend that she attend.

I showed her the session planner that Danny Sullivan , who chairs and programs SES, provides.It includes an advanced itinerary for conference attendees who aren’t “beginners,” but have never been to Search Engine Strategies before.

But, the advanced itinerary offers up to four options for some time slots, and advice like “ attend any session of interest” for many others. So, our client asked me to create an optimized itinerary for her.

Over the weekend, I spent some time creating a map of the exact routes that she should take through the four-day event.Who knows, optimization of Search Engine Strategies schedules could become a new service that we offer in the future.

Fortunately, the schedule for SES already includes morning coffee breaks, networking lunches, and afternoon refreshment breaks in the exhibit hall, s o our client won’t need to skip any of the conference sessions on Tuesday, Feb. 28, or Wednesday, Mar. 1.

To make the best use of her time, I took a close look at the advanced itinerary that Danny was recommending in his session planner.I also considered the sessions that Search Engine Strategies was promoting in its latest press release.

I also looked at Search Engine Roundtable ‘s plans for SES NYC 2006 Quadruple Coverage . Barry Schwartz , Ben Pfeiffer , Chris Boggs , and Lee Odden plan to cover a record 49 sessions, making them either the “C-SPAN of Search” or the “CNN of SES.”

Finally, I also relied on my own experience.I’ve attended 14 Search Engine Strategies conferences in the past four years.When I wasn’t speaking on a panel, I was often attending other sessions to keep up with this constantly changing industry.

While the itinerary below reflects some judgment calls, it isn’t arbitrary, whimsical or capricious.Not only has it been optimized for our client, it is also my schedule for SES NYC 2006:





9:00-9:45 a.m.

Barry Diller keynote

10:15-11:45 a.m.

Vertical creep into regular search results

4-Star Rated!

12:00-12:45 p.m.

Lunch with the Google engineers

1:00-2:15 p.m.

Targeting search ads by demographics & behavior

4-Star Rated!

2:45-4:00 p.m.

Winning a bid war


4:30-5:45 p.m.

Search head or search tail? Getting the mix right

4-Star Rated!


9:00-10:15 a.m.

News Search SEO

4-Star Rated!

10:30-11:15 a.m.

Morning coffee break in exhibit hall

11:15-12:30 p.m.

Reputation monitoring & management

4-Star Rated!

12:30-2:00 p.m.

Birds of a feather lunch in exhibit hall

2:00-3:15 p.m.

Blog & feed search SEO


3:15-4:00 p.m.

Afternoon refreshment break in exhibit hall

4:00-5:30 p.m.

Meet the blog & feed search engines

4-Star Rated!

5:30-6:30 p.m.

Cocktail reception in exhibit hall


9:00-10:15 a.m.

Big site/big brand SEM

4-Star Rated!

10:15-11:00 a.m.

Morning coffee break in exhibit hall

11:00-12:30 p.m.

Working as a team

4-Star Rated!

12:45-1:45 p.m.

Yahoo networking lunch

2:00-3:15 p.m.

Pimp my site!

New for NY!

3:15-4:00 p.m.

Afternoon refreshment break in exhibit hall

4:00-5:15 p.m.

Converting visitors into buyers

4-Star Rated!

5:30-6:30 p.m.

Evening Forum with Danny Sullivan

4-Star Rated!


9:00-10:15 a.m.

Measuring success overview

4-Star Rated!

10:45-12:00 p.m.

Measuring success case studies & tactics

4-Star Rated!

12:00-12:30 p.m.

Light lunch break

12:30-1:45 p.m.

Search & phone calls


I should disclose that I’m speaking at two of the sessions on the itinerary –“Vertical creep into regular search results,” which will be held on Monday from 10:15 to 11:45 a.m., and “News search SEO,” which will be held on Tuesday from 9:00 to 10:15 a.m.

Both are “4-star rated” sessions, which means they were evaluated as good or excellent by attendees at previous conferences.And Danny recommends both sessions in his Advanced Itinerary, although he also recommends “Contextual ads” on Monday from 10:15 to 11:45 a.m., and “Pundits on search” on Tuesday from 9:00 to 10:15 a.m.

And I have to admit that even I’d love to attend the “Pundits on search” session.The speakers include: Matt Cutts from Google, Robert Scoble from Microsoft, and Jeremy Zawodny from Yahoo as well as David Vise, author of The Google Story, and Zia Daniell Wigder from JupiterResearch.Two weeks ago, the panel was also going to feature John Battelle, author of The Search, but his name was no longer listed on the event’s web site when I looked yesterday.

Since I can’t be in both places at the same time, I’ll ask my business partner, Jamie O’Donnell, to attend “Pundits on search” while I’m speaking at “News search SEO.”

As our client has already discovered, n o individual can possibly attend more than 17 of the 70 sessions at Search Engine Strategies Conference & Expo 2006, which will be held next week at the Hilton New York.But a team can cover more ground.

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