If you’re reading this, you’ll probably be aware of the SEO industry’s biggest gig of the year. Held in sunny (most of the time) Brighton in a large conference hall hugging the coastline, Brighton SEO is the UK’s largest free SEO conference.

With the top names in the industry delivering talks on a broad range of digital marketing topics, it is a no-brainer for any agency or search enthusiast to attend.

After just over four months in my content role at White.net, it was time for me to sample the madness. So how did it go? Here are my ten highlights of the day:

Brighton SEO takeaways

If you crawl through Twitter using the hashtag #BrightonSEO, you may well find a selection of blogs regarding Brighton SEO takeaways. Unfortunately, this doesn’t actually mean the event’s producing a fast-food chain. It does, however, mean there are heaps of interesting theories, ideas and facts to take away from the event.

A chance to speak to agencies with stands

Yes, there is a whole host of fantastic speakers on the day, but it’s also an invaluable opportunity to speak to other brands promoting their products. A spontaneous face to face meeting, rather than a disjointed email dialogue, can be priceless for you and your business.

You’re literally on the beach

The event is quite literally a stone’s throw from Brighton beach and only a few hundred metres from the famous Pier. When the sun’s out, there are few better places to spend your lunch break or grab a beer after the day’s events.

Ideal for networking

For a digital marketing newbie, like myself, any networking event is priceless, but Brighton SEO is something else. Of course, I don’t know all the SEOs by name, let alone face, but if you become a social butterfly, then you’ll gain copious amounts of digital marketing contacts.

Brilliantly delivered talks

It’s often said that the world’s best speakers in politics, lecturing or SEO conferences have an element of humour in their content and delivery on stage. The SEO industry often conjures a slightly geeky image, but the speakers showed the confidence and engagement of a professional stand up, at times. For me, I’m still learning the technical side of SEO, but these talks were brought to life with digestible content and well-executed talks.

Incredible diversity of attendees and speakers

As the Brighton SEO motto suggests ‘A long way from a room above the pub’, the event has become international in its short history. The amount of attendees and speakers from different cultural backgrounds was refreshing to see and shows how diverse this industry is.

Complimentary SEO goodies

Who doesn’t love a free gift? Most of the stands have complimentary goods to give away, and the welcoming people of Brighton SEO provide an official goodie bag for all guests. It’s full of SEO essentials including a plaster, flag, bar of Brighton rock and Screaming Frog poster. What more do you want?

The pre and post party

An SEO meetup or conference wouldn’t be the same without a few drinks pre and post the main event (or during depending on your inclination). The pre-party held at a pub in the heart of Brighton seamlessly eases everyone into Friday, while the post party wraps it all up in true Brighton fashion on the pier.

A genuinely inspiring experience

Inspiring – an often-overused word. But sometimes you walk away from something feeling completely mentally energised – this was the case with Brighton SEO. Every talk we attended was unique in its delivery and theories, while there was a certain buzz about the place that gives you a motivation to push on in this industry.

Worth going again?

Yes. It’s free (if you’re on the ball when the day tickets are released). It’s the definition of a no-brainer. You’ll walk away with more than you stepped into the building with, and we don’t just mean branded t-shirts!