The Sunday Talk – The Benchmark Search Conference

The Sunday Talk – Benchmark Search Conference 2018

Monday, 3rd of September. So the conference season has officially started. Between now and Christmas I’m gonna be attending a conference or a roundtable almost every single week. This week I am going to the Benchmark Search Conference in Manchester organised by Click Consult and I am super excited.
How often do you see Nick Wilsdon, Kristal Ireland, Bas, Fili and Lukasz Zelezny in the same room?
If I was them I will call it ‘Digital Marketing Heaven’. Do you want to go to the Digital Marketing Heaven? Come to our conference.

Adapt or Die (Digital Marketing is Adaptation)

One thing that SEO taught me over the years is ‘Adapt or Die‘. And I really don’t understand why people are crying about House of Fraiser. Now, let’s be honest. When the Internet came along House of Fraiser was rich and powerful. But House of Fraiser didn’t respect the new reality. And the new reality is digital. Everything digital. Digital is really changing the way people live. So let me give you one more example. And it’s very recent as well.

Yesterday I am coming back from Portugal, my holiday in Portugal and my neighbour sees me reading a book about Artificial intelligence. And he is like ‘Because of people like you a lot of people gonna lose their job’. So I just looked at him, he was holding an iPhone watching a movie and I was like ‘Because of people like you a lot of people at Nokia already lost their job. Why didn’t you stick to Nokia?’ And he just looked at me and he was like ‘I know what you mean. I am sorry.’
See people wanting to better their life is not something new and digital…

I just had a lengthy conversation online so let me summarise it. We are a society driven by digital technology. Let’s look around us. Let’s be honest with ourselves. There are countries out there where citizens don’t have running water but they own smartphones.

If your brand wants to be successful now and in the foreseeable future you need to invest in digital platforms and digital talent in order to stay ahead of your competitors.

Some people wish it would happen, others make it happen.

On my way to Benchmark Search Conference in Manchester. In front of me is Euston station and behind me here is the building where I made this crucial decision to stop doing front-end development and jump into digital marketing. At the time the idea was…it looked a bit crazy. Everybody was like ‘Omi you are crazy. Don’t do it. You’ve got a bright future in front-end development but I’ve decided to do what I love anyway…
Only time will tell if I was right.

I can accept failure. But I can't accept not trying.
I can accept failure. But I can’t accept not trying.

Yeah, I am in Manchester. I am in Manchester and I am seriously lost. Google Maps just doesn’t work here. It’s just throwing me in all directions. I am sure the hotel is over there but it’s telling me that it’s like 40 minutes away. And it’s almost 10 O’Clock.

Finally arrived and the hotel, the room, everything is just perfect. Ok, this is my room but have a look at the view. Oh my god, it’s just beautiful.

It’s a bit too late for food now so managed to find an open Tesco and bought a bunch of bananas.2, 4, 6 and a bottle of orange juice. Can’t wait for my breakfast tomorrow.

Actually, I know it’s 12 O’Clock but probably I should go and visit Dawn Anderson. Maybe she can give me some food.

Benchmark Search Conference

Benchmark Search Conference 2018
Benchmark Search Conference 2018

Ellie England

Ellie England, Sales Director, Bing Ads.
‘Let’s do AI – How Artificial Intelligence is Amplifying Human and Also Marketing Ingenuity – Today.’

Passionate about search, women in technology and making a lasting impact, Ellie England began her career in sales working in an inner-city secondary school ‘selling’ the importance of modern languages to disaffected teenagers. She got into the world of search working for Google for 6 years, before eventually relocating to Manchester and joining Microsoft.
As a Sales Director for Bing Ads, Ellie England has been spearheading the continued investment in the North of the UK and leads a growing team of search account managers.

Kristal IrelandKristal Ireland, Head of E-commerce and Retail Technology, London North Eastern Railway
‘5 Weeks to Make It – How to Keep Your Cool and Switch a Major Brand Online in Only 5 Weeks’

Previously voted as one of the UK’s Top 30 Women in Digital Under 30. A specialist in Social Media and Digital Brand Strategy, Kristal Ireland is an award-winning, strategic and experienced digital marketing expert.
A regular digital conference speaker and industry commentator Kristal Ireland has worked in digital for over a decade developing digital solutions for some of the UK’s biggest brands.

Dave KarellenDave Karellen, Head of Paid Search, Click Consult
‘Machine Learning: Friend or Foe?’

Dave Karellen has been with Click since 2011 and heads up the Paid Search (PPC) team as well as taking responsibility for key PPC accounts. Developing best practice, delivering PPC training and liaising directly with clients are also core elements of his role.
Dave’s extensive Excel knowledge has seen him develop a range of PPC optimisation and reporting tools. A further strength is high-level data analysis, developed while studying for a Master’s Degree in Mathematics.

Sabrina GarufiSabrina Garufi, Agency Development Manager, Google
‘Marketing in the Age of Assistance’

Sabrina Garufi is currently an Agency Development Manager at Google, helping UK agencies on all aspects of their digital activity, with a particular emphasis on growth.
Prior to working with agencies, Sabrina Garufi was a Consultant for the specialised Global Expansions Team, helping Google’s largest advertisers craft and execute their international expansion strategies.

With a background in Finance, Sabrina Garufi began her career in banking, working for five years as a Corporate Cash Manager. A native of Montreal, she completed her MBA in Berlin before moving to Dublin to join Google.

Fili WieseFili Wiese, SEO Expert,
‘Optimising for Search Bots’

Fili Wiese is a renowned technical SEO expert, ex-Google engineer and was a senior technical lead in the Google Search Quality team.
At he offers SEO consulting services with SEO audits, SEO workshops and successfully recovers websites from Google penalties.

John WarnerJohn Warner, Marketing and Content Executive, Click Consult
‘Stop Wasting Time! 5 Steps to Automate Your Google Analytics Reporting’

John Warner is an internal marketer at Click Consult where he spends his time accruing industry certifications, tinkering with code, plotting strategy and writing articles on all aspects of search marketing.

While having a master’s degree in creative writing and a background predominately in content, John Warner has found himself drawn to the technical side of SEO – developing a passion for data, research, interactivity, artificial intelligence and voice search.

John Warner features regularly on a number of leading search marketing blogs, including regular articles for SEMRush, State of Digital and on the Click Consult blog, he also contributions to the quarterly magazine ‘Benchmark Search Marketing’, occasionally hosts the ‘’ podcast and has spoken at a number of leading UK conferences.

Nick WilsdonNick Wilsdon, Search Product Owner, Vodafone
‘Understanding Alexa Skills: How to Add Amazon’s Market-Leading Device Into Your Current and Future Marketing Strategy’

Nick Wilsdon started his online career in 1998, giving his first SEO seminar two years later in Brighton. After moving to Moscow, he became an expert on Russian search, working with gaming clients across CIS markets. During this time he was involved in the Russian start-up community, working with Yandex, RF parliament members and the US State Department.

Since his return to the UK, Nick has held head of department roles at Arena Media, part of the Havas Media Group and within the Dentsu Aegis network. As the SEO lead at Vodafone Group, he is standardising and improving online performance across 22 markets and 55 partner markets. He is particularly interested in mobile SEO, cross-channel campaigns and joining up the dots in a logical way.

The Sunday Talk

Now that I am back in London I wanna tell you something. The Benchmark Search Conference is becoming one of my favourite conferences. On one side this conference is big enough to attract good, quality speakers. On the other side, it’s not that big so people can still have this intimate, one-to-one connection with the speakers and the other attendees.

Talking about connections to everybody who sent me a private message on LinkedIn. I promise you I’m gonna answer your message. But saying that last time I checked I had 129 unanswered messages. So please, please be patient.
While you are waiting to talk to me don’t forget to come back here next week cause you’ve got the problems and I’ve got the solutions.

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