Think Visibility returned to Leeds again this weekend. It was my third ThinkVis, and judging by the number of people who had travelled from outside of the north of England, it looks like the event is finally starting to get the recognition it deserves.
If you don’t already know, Think Visibility is hailed by the organisers as “the UK’s best search, social media and affiliate conference”, and covers anything and everything from getting your website to the top of the search engines, website security, and monetising web traffic, to men in ninja suits giving advice on becoming SEO Ninjas.
As always, there was a great buzz amongst the attendees. One thing that makes the Think Visibility events stand out (apart from free pick-n-mix, Lego toys and cardboard cut-outs of Dom, a.k.a The Hodge) is the community spirit.
Like other online marketing conferences, people go to learn and share ideas but Think Visibility manages to combine quality content with fun antics and makes the ideal setting for relaxed yet vital networking opportunities.
Malcolm Coles presented a really interesting session about ‘How to Win at SEO with Duplicate Content’. The audience ranged from novice to expert SEOs, and Malcolm managed to deliver information that was useful to everyone. The key message was that duplicating content doesn’t have to be a case of copying or rewriting articles several times over. With just a few minor tweaks and the simple strategy ‘publish, republish and 301’, any person can dominate the SERPs – no black hat required.
Another great session was ‘Your Time to Shine’, where audience members were given the opportunity to speak for six minutes on any topic as long as it was interesting. Malcolm Slade, Rishil Lakhani, Anna Lewis and Bas Van Den Beld all rose to the challenge – it was a mix between hot new search talent meets comedy open mike.
Highlights included Malcolm Slade giving away free lego and speaking about using search techniques to build your brand, and Bas Van Den Beld sharing his experience of how a disastrous family holiday in France almost drove him to turn black hat to get back at a child-hating holiday camp owner.
One other key thing I will be looking at more closely is the subject of Facebook’s EdgeRank which Kelvin Newman touched upon in the ‘Ask the Experts’ discussion.
EdgeRank is an algorithm used to rank objects in a newsfeed and understanding how it works can help you optimise your Facebook pages to increase user engagement and exposure to your brand.
The theory is that pages with higher EdgeRank scores will appear more frequently within Facebook newsfeeds than pages with lower EdgeRank scores.
EdgeRank algorithm is determined by three main factors: time (how recent a news item is), affinity (the number of interactions one user has with another) and weight (the level of interaction a news item receives, i.e. leaving a comment or clicking on a photograph will attribute more weight than simply clicking the like button.) If this subject is of interest to you, you should read Kelvin’s ultimate guide to Facebook EdgeRank.
As the topic of Facebook’s EdgeRank algorithm was touched upon only briefly I think it would be a great session idea for next year’s conference.
So with Think Visibility 6 over, plans are in full swing for Think Visibility 7 which will take place on 3 March, 2012.