Here are a few of the highlights:
As the opening keynote this year, Avinash Kaushik challenged marketers to look at their attribution problem in a new way. The simple fact of the matter is that many do not have an urgent attribution problem. So, before you try and figure out the right model, see if you actually need a model in the first place. Basically, if most of your conversions occur in 1 or 2 visits, then you do not have an urgent problem. My takeaway from this session is that we all want to be better at attribution, but there is not a standard weighting model you should follow. First, identify your need. Second, test, test and tweak your model.
Search Insider Rob Griffin gave search marketers a reality check: Search as we know it is dead. He's right -- from the simple standpoint that search is no longer the redheaded stepchild of a marketing plan. It is a necessity and it is finally getting the recognition it deserves. The industry hasn't quite figured itself out yet, but continues to evolve.
As the search industry continues to grow and receives an increasing level of attention of C-Level executives, search marketers must learn to speak their language. As Mike Moran explained at the Summit, selling to the C-Suite requires you to understand their goals. We cannot speak marketing and technology. They care about profit. They are not interested in search, but the value of search -- and that value should be communicated as profit.
And last, but certainly not least, there is so much to learn by listening. The last session of the conference was definitely a crowd favorite. The Ball State University Panel not only brought 5 college students into the room to the tune of Lady Gaga; but also, it gave the audience a glimpse at this generation's Internet consumption. They don't watch TV, at least not like we watch TV. They watch Hulu and that is the norm. Four out of five of the students found Twitter annoying, while the fifth was an avid tweeter. They spend most of their waking moments online. Definitively a crowd favorite, a similar panel is sure to be included in future summits.
Don't worry if you missed the Search Insider Summit this time; just don't let it happen again! The Florida edition is just a few short months away.