SMX London 2018: the aftermath (#SMX_London)

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The leading Search Marketing conference in London

SMX London is over and we are all back to our regular programme. adaplo was a blog partner of the Event and as one, we decided to write a summary for the event.

For all those that did not have the opportunity to attend this great event the previous days (22–23 of May 2018), reading this post will help you get a nice overview of the experience. For those lucky ones that did attend, it will be a nice reminder (and a mental confirmation that you need to also be there next year!).

Of course, huge congratulations and many thanks to the Rising Media Team that organised this event and were always around.

The data

Approximately 400 people from many different countries gathered in the same place to attend this event. The event was a truly international one, as I met people from US, UK, Poland, Slovakia, Germany and Israel (and I am missing some countries for sure, as I did not have the opportunity to meet all people).

Lot of great content presented into the 2 days in the 50 Talks from experienced speakers on topics ranging technical SEO to SEM testing and automation. There were 3 different tracks the first day (SEO, SEM, Solutions) and 2 tracks the second day (SMX Advanced, Issues & tactics).

Top themes

If I could abstract the content I would say that the 2 main themes were Technical SEO (and how this applies to the new developments such as voice, AMP, PWAs) and Automation (in everything but especially on PPC).

On automation there are 2 different schools of thought in our industry. The believers (including the notorious Avinash as you can see in his AI post) state that automation is coming and the vast majority of the tasks that we are doing on PPC will be automated. The sceptics state that the machines cannot replace the human judgement and many say that you cannot leave things on auto-pilot.

Personally I am long on automation on PPC (this is why we have built a Google Shopping management software). I strongly believe that automation will significantly change our industry and this will happen fast as the leaders in AI are the same companies that make almost all their revenue from digital advertising. All things will not change in just one day but part by part they will be automated starting from standardised industries (such as ecommerce) and standardised campaign types (feed-based advertising) and slowly moving to other industries and campaign types.

The talks

Following I am sharing my view on some of the Talks I listened to. Although I would love to have attended all Talks, I did not. And this was for a great reason, which is to get to know and communicate with amazing people from different places. Every attendee I met had something interesting to share either from one of the Talks or from their own experience.

Day 1

Keynote: Age of Assistance (Behsahad Behzadi, Google)

The Latest & Greatest in Online Advertising (Alistair Dent by iCrossing UK, Andy Headington by Adido and Navah Hopkins by Wordstream)

How to implement a winning PPC strategy in a digital landscape dominated by “The Duopoly” (Richard May, Marin)

Taking audience targeting to the next level (Kenda Macdonald by Automation Ninjas and Andraz Stalec by Red Orbit)

Perfect your SEM testing: How and why to evaluate everything (Duane Brown by Take some risk and George Gangar by Merckle Periscopix)

Faster & smarter: Moving from manual to automated SEM campaign management (Brad Geddes by Adalysis, Frederick Vallaeys by Optymzr)

Day 2

Winning with social ads (Caitlin Halper by 3Q Digital, Sarah Lively by Nebo and Samantha Loyd by Penn Foster)

Searching for Shoppers: How to succeed with e-commerce campaigns (Mark Meijs by iProspect and Ann Stanley by Annica Digital)

Google Tag Manager can do WHAT? (Tom Benner by Builtvisible and Stephanie Wallace by Nebo)

Essential reports for Search Marketers (Arianne Donoghue by Epiphany Search, Wijnand Meijer by Trueclicks)


All in all great content and great people. This was an interesting event that I enjoyed and that I will surely attend next year.

From my time at Google and by attending events such as this, I have developed a holistic view of our industry that guided us to develop adaplo. If you are interested into boosting your Google Shopping campaigns, book a demo to learn how we have helped agencies and companies such as Lacoste.

If you are looking for a great opportunity to visit Greece this summer, check the 1st Digital Analytics Summit in Greece. With under £500 you can get conference ticket and 2-night stay at a 5-star hotel!

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