27 of the Best Marketing Conferences in 2017 (and 2018)

08/09/2017 12:46 am ET Updated Aug 14, 2017

The people have spoken.

When I've done articles like this in the past, I come up with the list based on my personal preference (or what Google says is the most popular).

But with this list of top marketing conferences, I changed my approach. Each conference on this list was recommended by someone in my LinkedIn network.

Here's the LinkedIn status update that I posted a few weeks ago where you can see all of the suggestions.

So without further ado, here are the 27 best marketing conferences according to my network on LinkedIn.

The B2B Marketing Forum is specifically designed for just that--B2B marketers.

According to those that chimed in on the thread, the networking opportunities were incredible at this event.

The largest Content Marketing event around, CMWorld focuses on providing attendees with takeaways that they can implement to grow their audience and build their business.

Some of the best breakouts mentioned were:

Jay Baer - “Does Your Content Pass the Mom Test?”

Lee Odden - “Influencer Marketing”

Ann Handley - “FIWTSBS (Find Interesting Ways To Say Boring Stuff)”

Jonathan Kranz - “Content Lab”

With keynote speakers like Brene Brown and Michelle Obama, the quality is apparent.

What so many mentioned in the LinkedIn thread, though, was the helpfulness of the smaller breakout sessions, too.

This international conference for senior-level tech marketing professionals goes beyond basics to tackle sophisticated challenges.

With a culture that allows for deep engagement with other attendees, MarTech will enable you to connect the marketing and technology sides of your business for creative collaboration across the organization.

Built for the executive level B2B leader, the SiriusDecisions Summit provides data-driven best practices, new innovations, and networking with an elite community of sales, marketing, and product leaders.

Many of those that commented on the post expressed their great experience as an attendee AND as a sponsor.

This event was unique in that it was described as a “life changing” conference -- powerful words!

Promising proven, practical, and actionable marketing education, the MarketingSherpa Summit is taught by successful marketers who have been in your shoes.

Not to mention the world-class venue.

Suggested by: Jacob Baldwin, Dan Briscoe

Past speakers have included Will Smith, Hillary Clinton, and John Legend--not your run of the mill conference.

Held in San Francisco, the Marketing Nation summit boasts engaging breakouts such as “Human to Human” (teaching brands to grow in their storytelling) and “7 Behavior Hacks that Increase Engagement.”

Most recently held in my own backyard of Orlando, FL, the LoyaltyExpo provides speakers from brands with credibility and insight into customer loyalty (and “not just the loyalty program”).

The customer experience tracks provide tangible, targeted experience structures and processes for brands.

Suggested by: Mark Johnson, Josh Kelso

9) MozCon

With a laser focus on SEO, brand development, and CRO, this conference provides actionable input on a specific topic.

A few of the favorite breakouts were:

“Data-Driven Design” by Oli Gardner

“SEO-intent based framework” by Katie Cunningham

“How to Survive Google's Trojan Horsing of the Web” by Rand Fishkin

With an attendance of around 300, this content marketing conference allows for greater engagement with speakers and attendees.

Plus, if you miss something, your ticket allows you full access to all speaker slides and video recordings to go back and watch again.

Suggested by: Nancy Maneely

With leading speakers such as Brene Brown, Allen Mulally from Ford, and Daymond John from Shark Tank, you will gain insight from leading voices.

Beyond this, the networking comes from unique events such as the golf tournament and black-tie gala.

Suggested by: Jean Ginzburg

12) iCONIC

With speakers ranging from Tony Robbins to Tony Hawk, this conference focuses on entrepreneurship, but covers so much more.

The innovative sessions will challenge you, and their networking events provide the opportunity to meet hundreds of business leaders.

Hosted by CNBC & Inc, you can trust that the entire experience will be top-notch.

Suggested by: Sean Privitera

Honing in on strategic marketing content and sales enablement, this conference is designed specifically for B2B marketing (hence the name).

This conference equips marketers to make the right decisions on people, processes, and technologies to drive acquisition, retention, and revenue growth.

One unique takeaway--analysts are accessible throughout the time to do 1:1 meetings.

Suggested by: Tracy Eiler

A conference featured in Inc., Forbes, and The Huffington Post, one word defines its mission: growth.

Bringing leaders from the fastest growing tech companies, this conference will empower you to “get, keep, and grow customers and revenue.”

What more could you ask for?

Suggested by: Darrell Ellens

15) VidCon

With top marketing executives from a diverse range of brands, the attendees are what make VidCon.

Bringing these attendees together for unique networking events allows you to meet the players without their fans chasing them all over the place.

While the focus is online video, the separate industry tracks enable everyone to participate in what will be beneficial to them.

Suggested by: Thomas Ma

An “experts-only” event on SEM and SEO tactics which frequently features Google execs...yes please.

This conference serves as a chance to connect with others fluent in SEM and SEO that will leave you thinking, “These are my people!”

The sessions are “fast-paced, Q&A-packed, always informative, and don’t stop to cover the basics.”

Suggested by: Jasmine Martirossian

17) Ignite

This one day event hosts over 1,000 marketers under one roof.

At this event you’ll find more than 50 sessions, a unique networking experience, and an awards ceremony that celebrates the best in B2B marketing.

Suggested by: Russ Powell

In the time we live in, email automation has turned from a “nice-to-have” to a critical piece of the equation.

As customers expect tailored and customized experiences, this conference aims to help marketers deliver on the sophisticated world of email automation.

With top brands, speakers, and content, this summit empowers marketers to meet the expectations of their customers.

Suggested by: Maurice Flynn

Feeling stuck? Like you have no new ideas?

Consider CPSI.

“Focusing on deliberate creativity, innovation, and change leadership, CPSI teaches practical creativity skills and tools in an inspiring learning environment.”

Taking the whole team? Register 5 or more people and receive a 30% discount on registration.

Suggested by: Joe McCambley

With the marketing community as vibrant, active, and growing as it is, this conference is an opportunity to promote “creativity, exploration, and shared experiences.”

With speakers from national brands and hosted by Comcast, you can expect meaningful, industry leading insight from this one-day conference.

No doubt you will leave feeling informed and inspired.

Suggested by: Lisa Beaumont

Featuring a diverse range of speakers (from CMOs to an Olympic gymnasts), this one-day event in Boston will help you connect the world of tech through the eyes of artists, industry-leaders, and innovators--helping you to take a new perspective back to your team.

Suggested by: Mike Volpe

This is a conference that I’ve personally attended, so I was excited to see it show up in the comments of my LinkedIn update.

This is a single track conference that aims to teach marketers next-level, actionable marketing tactics they can use the very next day.

Talks cover every facet of digital marketing, including pay-per-click, conversion rate optimization, email, copywriting, landing page design, and more.

Unique in its focus on customer marketing, the Advocamp is all in on one concept--the customer experience.

With speakers like Daniel Pink, Jay Baer, and Dan Ariely you can be sure to get great training in short, high-energy talks.

The 1,000+ attendees also allow you to rub shoulders with other innovative business leaders passionate about customer experience.

Suggested by: David Axler

With practitioner led content, you can trust that The Revenue Summit will be both actionable and tactical.

The balance between sales and marketing allows for both sides of the team to gain real insight through providing separate tracks for each.

Beyond that, the 2,000+ high-quality attendees means that you are in the right spot to network.

Suggested by: Max Altschuler

Taking place in Brazil, the RD Summit aims to inspire and connect by bringing together marketing and sales experts throughout Latin America.

With 8 stages and 150 speakers, there will be no shortage of content, but what sets this conference apart is its “DisneyLand Effect.”

Suggested by: Renee Sturcq

This free (yes, FREE) event from “across the pond” (the next show is in Bournemouth, England) focuses on fueling business growth and innovation.

Topics such as digital transformation, video content, SEO, and social media marketing allow you to get the insights you are looking for without taking a hit to your budget.

Suggested by: Gemma Dare

This conference brings like minded content marketers together with those who understand the importance of experience to the buyer journey.

By matching “curious minds and groundbreaking presentations”, The Content Experience delivers just that--an experience--to all attendees.

Held in Toronto, this year’s event features Jay Baer (Convince & Convert), Ann Handley (MarketingProfs), Grad Conn (CMO of Microsoft), and many more.

Suggested by: Randy Frisch

Conclusion

There you have it.

According to my LinkedIn network, these are the 26 most impactful marketing conferences.

Did I miss one?

Connect with me on LinkedIn and let me know what you think should have made the list.

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James Carbary is the founder of Sweet Fish Media, a podcast agency for B2B brands. He’s a contributor for the Huffington Post & Business Insider, and he also co-hosts a top-ranked podcast according to Forbes: B2B Growth. When James isn’t interviewing the smartest minds in B2B marketing, he’s drinking Cherry Coke Zero, eating Swedish Fish, and hanging out with the most incredible woman on the planet (that he somehow talked into marrying him).

Thinking about launching a podcast for your B2B brand? Here’s a 26-step process that will explain exactly how to do it.

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