MozCon 2011 – Awesome. Go in 2012.

Ian Lurie

OK, first off, I have to make something clear: I am not an SEOMOZ fan.

Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with building fantastic tools, having a great conference, gathering all the SEO geniuses and best developers and generally smartest people in one place. I have no problem with a company so famous my parents ask me why I don’t work there.

But could you please do it in another damned city? I have a company to run, here. You guys are like a black hole of goodness, sucking up what little sunlight gets cast on the SEO industry, casting a shadow so big that us poor Portent-ites turn into glamor-deprived mushrooms. I think this is how Yahoo! felt looking down the street at Google HQ.

So, I have a healthy respect for SEOMOZ. I use all their tools. And I like everyone I’ve ever met at SEOMOZ. But can’t this be a long-distance relationship?

Getting serious

MozCon. This year is my second one. I presented on content strategies. Then I spent three days watching and listening to the other presenters.

I have a special measurement scale for all conferences: Ah-ha’s per day. An ‘ah-ha’ is one fantastic new tool, idea or strategy that I’ve just never thought of before, or that I’d forgotten.

Here’s the scale:

5+ ah-ha’s per day: I’m smiling all the time.
3-4 ah-ha’s per day: Totally worth the money.
1-2 ah-ha’s per day: I’m a little unsure about this.
0 ah-ha’s per day: I go back to my hotel room and cry.

MozCon 2011 broke 5, again. I learned new stuff about:

  • Analytics
  • Retargeting
  • Facebook marketing
  • SEO
  • PPC

I also met and/or saw speak all the top people in our industry. I mean that. Avinash Kaushik. Wil Reynolds. Will Critchlow. Richard Baxter.

And I’m leaving out all the Mozzers.

More telling

I’m writing this on a break at 3 PM on Friday. Last day of the conference. The room is still full. Everyone’s still here, listening to the speakers and learning stuff. And that’s with utterly worthless wifi (thanks a lot, Westin).

You gotta go

This conference costs $900 for SEOMOZ members. $1499 if you’re a non-member.

Your first inclination is to gasp. My God. Why the hell would I pay that?!!!

You’ll pay it if learning one really great thing per year is worth that much money. Can you grow your business by $1500 with one really good piece of internet marketing learning?

Man, I hope so.

Go to MozCon next year.

Other stuff

Ian Lurie

Ian Lurie is the founder of Portent. He's been a digital marketer since the days of AOL and Compuserve (25 years, if you're counting). Ian's recorded training for, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Smashing Magazine, and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, Seattle Interactive Conference and ad:Tech. He has published several books about business and marketing: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle, The Web Marketing All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies, and Conversation Marketing. Ian is now an independent consultant and continues to work with the Portent team- training the agency group on all things digital. You can find him at

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  1. Well said, man.
    It was my first time, and I can’t see myself not going to another one, if at all possible.
    BTW, you did a great job. Loved it. for real.

  2. While I wasn’t able to attend, I saw your deck – great presentation. Those of my friends that went said that yours was among the top three presentations, so congratulations! I’ll see you there next year.

  3. This was my first time at MOZcon and had a good time and learned a bunch of new things. It is definitely worth the time to go again next year.
    Your presentation was one of my favorites.

  4. Ian, we loved having you and it was great to meet you again!
    That said, I know you used to be a regular contributor to the SEOmoz blog. 🙂 Man, I’d love to see more! I know, I know… you’re big and important now and your own blog has taken off. Just sayin’. (no seriously, don’t make me resort to begging)

  5. Yes, I TOTALLY agree, I was there for all 3 days too, and WOW, blew my mind. Loved it and I can’t wait for MozCon 2012.
    PS. I really enjoyed your presentation too, great job, you got a 5 on the “ah-ha” scale too! 🙂

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