I experienced my first ever UK Internet conference last week, the a4u expo, a conference dedicated to affiliate marketing with a heavy leaning to SEO. I was invited to speak there by Kieron Donoghue and after a fair bit of umming and arring I accepted and I’m really pleased I did, so thanks again Kieron for putting my name forward.
The expo itself was a really well organised event (dk you could learn something from this ) and ram packed with talks and presentations, if anything there were a few too many as a number overlapped so you had to pick and choose which to attend. I won’t go into all the talks here as many have already spoken about them (I’ll post links at the end).
I saw the same presentations as Patrick Altoft (well not exactly as Patrick managed to sleep through the hour long keynote on Day 1, quite amusing when you’re sat/laid in the middle on the second row). I’ve known Patrick online for a number of years and it was great to finally meet face to face. Also met up and had the pleasure of spending time with Chris Garret, who calmed me down more than he’ll ever know.
I spent much of day 1 shitting bricks about my presentation on the day 2, even tried a practice session in front of the mirror in my hotel room but felt like an absolute twonk so gave that one a miss and practised drinking at the bar instead.
After waking later than planned on the Wednesday, had time to read through my script again and calm nerves with a can of Grolsh for breakfast. Headed over to the presentation room that I would be speaking in to see people crowding round the door to listen to an earlier speaker, this did nothing for my nerves and at this point I was thinking of many different ways to cause physical pain to Kieron for getting me into this.
Once my presentation began (did think about bolting when the room filled up) I ended up sacking the script and making it up as I went along from the slides (thanks Tim Nash for advising me that this is the normal approach). I reckon it was the combination of a cool audience and “The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women (2nd Edition)” slide that helped calm my nerves and the presentation seemed to go pretty well, there were loads of intelligent questions afterwards which I’m told is a good sign. So thanks everyone that witnessed and helped with my first speaking gig, it was an awesome experience and I was on a real high for the rest of the day (though that may of been down to alcohol too).
Many people asked about which WordPress plug-ins I used, I had a brain fart blank at the time as I’ve actually written about this before, New Blog Plug-In Check List. Joost also recommended a collection of plug-ins in his SEO for WordPress Presentation, well worth checking out.
Another item that came up was using Chitika as another source of income. I’d agreed a special deal with Ryan (my rep at Chitika) to give new sign-ups a bonus:
The bonus will be on a 50% match – for example:
If the user earns $30, we will give them an additional $15 bonus
The max amount of the bonus will be $50, so if they earn over $100, they will receive the max bonus of $50
To be eligible sign up under my referral, if you recently signed up before seeing this let me know and I’ll see if they can back date it somehow (sorry Ryan).
If anybody has any other questions let me know by commenting here and I’ll do my best to answer them.
At the end of the second day I had the pleasure of being taken out for a Thai meal with Becky and Dave Naylor, there was a somewhat motley bunch of Anthony Shapley, Mel Carson, Todd Crawford, Joost De Valk, Marcus Tandler, Patrick and myself. It was a great end to the expo (until my second wind came later on and I ended up at a casino at 7am) so thanks again Becky and Dave.
There are plenty more posts about the expo and other sessions, check out:
Kierons wrapup post – with a gazzillion links to other people experiences.
Peter Anderson – Why a4u sucked (link bait if ever I saw it).
Geoff’s Review – I think I owe him money or a job for that review