37 Digital Marketing Conference Speakers Who Will Inspire Your Marketing Programs

Shana Pilewski
Shana Pilewski
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37 Digital Marketing Conference Speakers

As marketers, we’re always looking for inspiration.

When we’re not creating content, we spend our few spare moments contributing to new conversations in our professional Facebook and LinkedIn groups, getting a pulse on the latest trends from relevant industry trades, and scrolling through select newsletters we receive after carefully sharing our info.

But sometimes, there’s nothing that quite compares to the feeling of entering a convention center with hundreds or even thousands of other career-minded folks to get your blood pumping. Or to hear the roar of the crowd during that opening keynote…it’s a powerful experience.

But with so many companies hosting conferences these days, how does one ensure the ROI of a trip to any of the events taking place throughout the calendar year?

This article aims to aid you in the decision-making process. Below find 37 of the best digital marketing speakers (in no particular order) who will be presenting at conferences in 2018.

1. Mark Schaefer

Mark Schaefer

A globally-recognized author, speaker, podcaster and business consultant who blogs at {grow}, Mark Schaefer has written at length about some very important issues, including content shock. I greatly admire his work and respect his industry candor.

Areas of expertise:

Analytics, content strategy, email marketing, SEO, social media

Find him at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

Growth Acceleration Summit in Boston, MA, from June 18–20

2. Andy Crestodina

Andy Crestodina

Co-founder of Orbit Media, an award-winning web design company in Chicago, Andy Crestodina has provided web strategy and marketing advice to more than 1,000 companies over the course of 13 years. He’s written in-depth articles on a number of topics, and I had the pleasure of watching him speak at Content Marketing World a few years ago.

Areas of expertise:

Analytics, content strategy, email marketing, SEO, social media

Find him at:

Interact Digital Marketing Conference in Columbus, OH, from April 25–26

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

Content Jam in Chicago, IL, from October 8–9

3. Alisa Meredith

Alisa Meredith

Alisa Meredith is a blogger, speaker, author and content marketing manager at Tailwind who believes in the power of visual marketing. She’s on a mission to help businesses get in their creative groove—so if you’re looking for some of the same, she’s the one for you.

Areas of expertise:

Pinterest marketing, promoted pins, social business development, inbound marketing, lead generation, social media strategies, audits

Find her at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

4. Andrew Davis

Andrew Davis

A bestselling author and keynote speaker, Andrew Davis produced for NBC and worked for The Muppets before building and selling a thriving digital marketing agency. A man of many talents, audiences are excited to see Andrew on stage this year.

Areas of expertise:

Digital marketing, content marketing, branding, business

Find him at:

Content Marketing Conference in Boston, MA, from May 2–4

5. Ana Hoffman

Ana Hoffman

Responsible for taking TrafficGenerationCafe.com from an unknown blog to the top 18,000 global sites in four months (according to Alexa.com), Ana Hoffman is an OG growth hacker tirelessly searching for and discovering innovative ways to drive profitable website traffic, for free.

Areas of expertise:

SEO, blog audits, blogging, growth hacking

Find her at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

6. Lee Odden

Lee Odden

Lee Odden is co-founder and CEO of TopRank Marketing, a US-based digital marketing agency serving major B2B brands. A recognized content creator and influencer marketer, if you haven’t heard one of Lee’s talks, now is your chance.

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, influencer marketing, social media marketing, SEO, customer-centric digital marketing

Find him at:

B2B Marketing Exchange in Scottsdale, AZ, from February 19–21

Pubcon in Fort Lauderdale, FL, from April 10–12

Digital Summit in Minneapolis, MN, from August 22–23

7. Chad Pollitt

Chad Pollitt

Chad Pollitt is the co-founder of Relevance and author of “The Native Advertising Manifesto,” “The Content Promotion Manifesto” and “51 Things Your Mother Taught You About Inbound Marketing.” I’ve long appreciated his expertise, especially in the domain of native, and think you will too.

Areas of expertise:

Inbound marketing, native advertising, SEO, SEM, content marketing, content promotion, affiliate marketing, PPC, conversion testing, social media marketing

Find him at:

Content Marketing Conference in Boston, MA, from May 2–4

Intelligent Content Conference in Las Vegas, NV, from March 20–22

8. Larry Kim

Larry Kim

Larry Kim is the founder of WordStream, the world’s largest PPC marketing software company, managing hundreds of millions of dollars of ad spend for thousands of companies worldwide. His free tools for AdWords, Facebook Ads and keyword research have been used by millions of marketers, making the man a marketing legend.

Areas of expertise:

Paid media, SEO, social media marketing

Find him at:

C3 in New York, NY, from March 7–8

Content Marketing Conference in Boston, MA, from May 2–4

9. Heidi Cohen

Heidi Cohen

Chief content officer for the award-winning Actionable Marketing Guide, Heidi Cohen simplifies the complex concepts behind today’s evolving marketing challenges. She’s built her marketing career at major international corporations including Citibank, Bertelsmann and The Economist. She’s good. Really good.

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, branding, research, social media, business

Find her at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

10. Will Critchlow

Will Critchlow

Founder of Distilled, Will Critchlow has been helping digital marketers jump-start their careers in online marketing for years. Consultant for some of the world’s largest organizations and most famous websites, it’s no wonder he has spoken at most major industry events.

Areas of expertise:

Business, marketing, conference design, building web apps, SEO, search marketing

Find him at:

Distilled SearchLove Conference in San Diego, CA, from March 26–27

BrightonSEO in Brighton, UK, from April 26–27

Distilled SearchLove Conference in Boston, MA, from June 7–8

11. Amy Porterfield

Amy Porterfield

Amy Porterfield is an online marketing expert, educator, and host of the top-ranked “Online Marketing Made Easy” podcast. She’s worked with mega brands like Harley-Davidson Motorcycles, Peak Performance Coach and Tony Robbins. Enough said.

Areas of expertise:

Online marketing, online training, social media, content development

Find her at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

12. Marcus Sheridan

Marcus Sheridan

From pool guy to best-seller, Marcus Sheridan brought his swimming pool company from the brink of bankruptcy and turned it into one of the most successful in the US. This road to redemption story is one you shouldn’t miss.

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, social media, digital marketing, business

Find him at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

IMPACT Live in Hartford, CT, from August 7–8

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

13. Rebecca Lieb

Rebecca Lieb

Rebecca Lieb is a strategic advisor, research analyst, keynote speaker, author and columnist. She was Altimeter Group’s digital advertising and media analyst, where she published what remains the largest extant body of research on paid, owned and earned media. Basically, if Rebecca Lieb believes it to be true, I believe it, too.

Areas of expertise:

Digital marketing and media, content strategy, content marketing, converged media

Find her at:

B2B Marketing Exchange in Scottsdale, AZ, from February 19–21

Epic Content Marketing in Oslo, Norway, on May 3

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

14. Jay Acunzo

Jay Acunzo

Jay Acunzo is an award-winning podcaster and dynamic keynote speaker. Before creating the popular show Unthinkable, Jay was a digital media strategist at Google and head of content at HubSpot. You may recognize him as the host with the most during recent Content Marketing World events.

Areas of expertise:

Business, blogging, podcasting

Find him at:

SMX West in San Jose, CA, from March 13–15

Growth Acceleration Summit in Boston, MA, from June 18–20

15. Eric Enge

Eric Enge

Eric Enge was named 2016’s Search Marketer of the Year (Male) at the Landys and 2016 Search Personality of the Year at the US Search Awards. His company, Stone Temple Consulting, was also named Best Large SEO Agency of the Year at the US Search Awards. So really, if you want one of the best in SEO, Eric’s the guy.

Areas of expertise:

SEO, content marketing, social media

Find him at:

C3 in New York, NY, from March 7–8

SMX West in San Jose, CA, from March 13–15

16. Melanie Deziel

Melanie Deziel

Melanie Deziel is an award-winning native ad strategist and writer, as well as a member of the board of the Native Ad Institute. Formerly of The New York Times, Huffington Post and Time Inc., Melanie wrote the 2014 and 2015 Best Native Ads (OMMA), and is the founder of the native ad industry newsletter, The Overlap League. Okay, Melanie, we want to see you.

Areas of expertise:

Native advertising, branded content

Find her at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2
SXSW: Tech Content Panel in Austin, TX, on March 12
Intelligent Content Conference in Las Vegas, NV, from March 20–22
The Inbounder in Madrid, Spain, from April 25–26

17. Joe Lazauskas

Joe Lazauskas

Joe Lazauskas is the director of content strategy for Contently, executive editor of The Content Strategist, winner of the 2016 Digiday Award for Best Brand Publication, and all-around good dude. He also recently co-authored a book entitled The Storytelling Edge, which you should grab and gobble up!

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, brand storytelling, content strategy

Find him at:

Intelligent Content Conference in Las Vegas, NV, from March 20–22

18. Talia Wolf

Talia Wolf

Talia Wolf helps businesses use emotional targeting, psychology and persuasive design to create better customer journeys and generate more revenue, leads and sales. A popular keynote speaker, her presentations are loaded with data and actionable tips, best practices and case studies—my favorite.

Areas of expertise:

Strategy, conversion optimization, growth hacking

Find her at:

The Inbounder in Madrid, Spain, from April 25–26

19. Ann Handley

Ann Handley

Chief content officer of MarketingProfs, Ann Handley speaks and writes about how to rethink the way businesses markets themselves. Cited in Forbes as the most influential woman in social media, she was also recognized by ForbesWoman as one of the top 20 women bloggers. Very well deserved, if you ask me.

Areas of expertise:

Social media, content marketing, digital marketing

Find her at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

IMPACT Live in Hartford, CT, from August 7–8

Digital Summit in Minneapolis, MN, from August 22–23

B2B Marketing Forum in San Francisco, CA, from November 13–16

20. David Meerman Scott

David Meerman Scott

A popular face around the circuit, David Meerman Scott is a recognized online marketing strategist and author of several books on marketing, including “The New Rules of Marketing and PR.”

Areas of expertise:

Marketing, leadership, social media

Find him at:

IMPACT Live in Hartford, CT, from August 7–8

Tony Robbins Business Mastery in Las Vegas, NV, on August 16

NSA Influence in Dallas, TX, on July 15

21. Seth Godin

Seth Godin

Everyone knows Seth Godin—and if you don’t…now you do!. Author of 18 best-selling books around the world (and translated into more than 35 languages), he writes about the post-industrial revolution, the way ideas spread, marketing, quitting, leadership and most of all, changing everything. The man is a living legend.

Areas of expertise:

Marketing, content marketing, blogging, entrepreneurship, everything

Find him at:

Behind the Brand in Newport Beach, CA, on February 15

EntreLeadership Summit in San Antonio, TX, from May 20–23

Digital Summit in Minneapolis, MN, from August 22–23

Nordic Business Forum in Helsinki, Finland, from September 26–27

22. Arnie Kuenn

Arnie Kuenn

Arnie Kuenn is founder and CEO of Vertical Measures, a content marketing agency with SEO helping their clients drive profitable growth through content marketing. He has also authored two acclaimed content marketing books and travels around the globe as content marketing instructor and trainer at numerous conferences, workshops and seminars. This man knows what he’s talking about.

Areas of expertise:

Online business growth, content marketing, social media, local internet marketing, SEO, link building

Find him at:

Content Marketing Conference in Boston, MA, from May 2–4

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

DigiMarCon East in New York, NY, from May 10–11

23. Nadya Khoja

Nadya Khoja

Best known for her ability to cover in-depth topics without making your hair turn gray, Nadya Khoja has been driving growth for her team of infographic connoisseurs at Venngage since 2015.

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, lead generation

Find her at:

ACT-W Conference in Phoenix, AZ, from April 11–13

Comedy Marketing Conference in Boston, MA, on May 2–4

24. Ardath Albee

Ardath Albee

Ardath Albee is the author of “Digital Relevance: Developing Marketing Content and Strategies that Drive Results” and “eMarketing Strategies for the Complex Sale.” She has been voted one of the 50 Most Influential People in Sales and Lead Management for the past three years, and was selected as a 2014 Woman to Watch in B2B Marketing by FierceCMO.

Areas of expertise:

Digital marketing, content strategy, sales enablement

Find her at:

B2B Marketing Exchange in Scottsdale, AZ, from February 19–21

Intelligent Content Conference in Las Vegas, NV, from March 20–22

25. Ian Cleary

Ian Cleary

Ian Cleary is the founder of RazorSocial and a digital strategist with a strong passion for technology. He writes for Forbes and Entrepreneur.com, and loves being on stage inspiring, educating and entertaining. Come learn some valuable insights from Ian.

Areas of expertise:

Social media, content marketing

Find him at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

26. Robert Rose

Robert Rose

Robert Rose is founder and chief troublemaker for the The Content Advisory, the education and consulting group with the Content Marketing Institute. He’s worked with more than 500 companies, including 15 of the Fortune 100, providing marketing advice and counsel for global brands such as Capital One, Dell, Ernst & Young, HP, Microsoft, Thomson Reuters, Abbott Laboratories, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and UPS. Wow.

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, content strategy, digital marketing, social media, content management, SaaS, business, marketing strategy

Find him at:

Digital Marketing for FinServices West in San Francisco, CA, from February 22–23

Intelligent Content Conference in Las Vegas, NV, from March 20–22

Interact Digital Marketing Conference in Columbus, OH, from April 25–26

Epic Content Marketing in Oslo, Norway, on May 3

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

27. Doug Kessler

Doug Kessler

Doug Kessler is co-founder and creative director of Velocity, the London-based B2B content marketing agency. He’s famous for pieces such as “Crap: Why The Biggest Threat to Content Marketing is Content Marketing” and “The Big Fat Content Marketing Strategy Checklist.” Doug can often be found ranting against the reactionary forces of mediocre marketing—but always with a bit of a wink.

Areas of expertise:

Content marketing, marketing strategy, inbound marketing, social media, SEO, email marketing, blogging, content strategy, lead nurturing, analytics

Find him at:

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

B2B Marketing Ignite in London, UK, on July 8 (TBD)

28. Scott Brinker

Scott Brinker

Scott Brinker is president and CTO of ion interactive. He is chair of the MarTech® Conference, a vendor-agnostic marketing technology conference and trade show series produced by MarTech Today’s parent company, Third Door Media. In a nutshell, he knows a ton about the technology we use to power our marketing initiatives.

Areas of expertise:

Software development, product development, product management, martech, digital marketing, agile management, CRO, marketing strategy, web development, SaaS.

Find him at:

GrowthHackers Conference in San Diego, CA, on February 6

MarTech Conference West in San Jose, CA, from April 23–25

Epic Content Marketing in Oslo, Norway, on May 3

Digital Business World Congress in Madrid, Spain, from May 22–24

MarTech Conference East in Boston, MA, from October 1–3

Martech Alliance Festival in London, UK, on November 1

29. Oli Gardiner

Oli Gardiner

Unbounce co-founder Oli Gardner has seen more landing pages than anyone on the planet. A prolific international speaker, Oli is on a mission to rid the world of marketing mediocrity by using data-informed copywriting, design, interaction and psychology to create a more delightful experience for marketers and customers alike.

Areas of expertise:

Landing page optimization, CRO, copywriting, content strategy, design

Find him at:

Mozcon in Seattle, WA, from July 9–11 (TBD)

Conex in Toronto, Canada, from August 21–22 (TBD)

Unbounce Call to Action Conference in Vancouver, Canada, from August 27–29 (TBD)

Growth Marketing Summit in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 6

Growth Marketing Conference in San Francisco, CA, from December 11–12 (TBD)

30. Michael Brenner

Michael Brenner

Michael Brenner is a globally recognized keynote speaker, author of “The Content Formula” and CEO of Marketing Insider Group. Recognized by Huffington Post as a top business keynote speaker and by Forbes as a top CMO influencer, I follow him across my professional social channels, and you sure won’t want to miss him.

Areas of expertise:

Business, leadership, marketing strategies, content marketing

Find him at:

Growth Acceleration Summit in Boston, MA, from June 18–20

AACE International in San Diego, CA, from June 24–26

31. Jay Baer

Jay Baer

Founder of Convince & Convert, Jay Baer is a renowned business strategist, keynote speaker, and New York Times best-selling author of five books including “Hug Your Haters.” He’s also advised more than 700 companies since 1994, including Caterpillar, Nike, Allstate, The United Nations and 32 of the Fortune 500.

Areas of expertise:

Technology, social media, content marketing, customer service

Find him at:

Social Media Marketing World in San Diego, CA, from February 28–March 2

Emarsys Revolution in Las Vegas, NV, on March 18

Oracle OpenWord in Chicago, IL, from April 11–12

Growth Acceleration Summit in Boston, MA, from June 18–20

32. Bryan Eisenberg

Bryan Eisenberg

Bryan Eisenberg is co-founder of BuyerLegends and co-author of Wall Street Journal and New York Times best-selling books “Call to Action,” “Always Be Testing,” “Waiting For Your Cat to Bark?” and “Buyer Legends: The Executive Storytellers Guide.” Bryan has been the keynote speaker for Shop.org, Direct Marketing Association, E-consultancy, Microsoft, the Canadian Marketing Association and hundreds of other events across the globe.

Areas of expertise:

Customer experience, CRO, A/B testing, persona marketing, landing page optimization

Find him at:

CXL Live in Austin, TX, from March 28–30

Growth Marketing Summit in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 6 (TBD)

33. Peep Laja

Peep Laja

Peep Laja is the founder of CXL and CXL Institute, along with two of the world’s most popular data-driven marketing blogs. He is passionate about driving change and growth through digital optimization and was voted the No. 1 most influential conversion rate optimization expert in the world.

Areas of expertise:

Conversion optimization, data analysis, user experience design, boosting online sales, conversion optimized design

Find him at:

CXL Live in Austin, TX, from March 28–30

NIO Summit in Antonio, TX, from September 27–27 (TBD)

34. Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi

Some like to call him the godfather of content marketing. Famous for his orange suits and masterfully organized events, if you want to learn about the origins of content marketing, look no further than Joe Pulizzi, founder of Content Marketing Institute.

Areas of expertise:

All things content marketing

Find him at:

C3 in New York, NY, from March 7–8

Entrepreneurship Series: An Evening with Joe Pulizzi in Hudson, OH, on April 16

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

35. Brian Clark

Brian Clark

Brian Clark built three successful service businesses using online marketing techniques before moving to a completely online business model when he started the site Copyblogger in 2006. The eventual result of that move—Rainmaker Digital—is an innovative company that provides the advice and solutions that empower people to successfully grow their businesses through social media and online marketing. Wow, just wow.

Areas of expertise:

Business, online marketing, blogging, copywriting

Find him at:

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7 (TBD)

36. Julie Fleischer

Julie Fleischer

I saw Julie Fleischer speak at Advertising Week a few years ago, and absolutely loved her take on the topic of data and measurement for publishers. It’s no wonder, seeing as she has been a data-driven pioneer for more than 20 years. She has spearheaded product marketing for Neustar’s award-winning Marketing Solutions portfolio and is absolutely brilliant.

Areas of expertise:

Advertising, data, CRM, content marketing strategy, programmatic media

Find her at:

Brand Innovators Summit in New York, NY, on May 4 (TBD)

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

Omni.Digital in Chicago, IL, from September 7–8

Programmatic IO in New York, NY, from October 15–16

37. Chris Goward

Chris Goward

When companies like Google, IBM, Magento and 1-800 Flowers want to improve their marketing results, they call Chris Goward. Founder of WiderFunnel. Chris is the brain behind the LIFT Model® and Infinity Optimization Process™.

Areas of expertise:

CRO, personalization

Find him at:

Content Marketing World in Cleveland, OH, from September 4–7

Growth Marketing Summit in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 6

Hero Conf in Austin, TX, on April 16–18 (TBD)

Recap

No matter what your specialty or domain, the speakers highlighted above will help you home in on the events that will be most valuable to you. Whether or not they include free happy hours, snacks, beautiful accommodations or the trendiest entertainment—you’ll have to research on your own.

But what any conference should aim to deliver is an amazing roster of speakers who will teach you things you didn’t know, open your mind to new ideas and provide actionable insights that will make you a better marketer.

This list is a great starting point for all of your digital marketing initiatives.

Discovery Drives Results

Shana Pilewski

Shana Pilewski

Shana Pilewski is a Senior Content Marketer at Dynamic Yield, a global leader in omnichannel personalization. There, her experience and passion for content strategy, development and creation allow her to help marketers level up their own skills.

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  • Ramona Sukhraj| February 12, 2018 at 3:15PM

    Hey Shana! I’m the Content Marketing Manager over at IMPACT. Thanks for compiling such an awesome list and for mentioning IMPACT Live 🙂 We’ll be sure to share!

  • Deb Rubin| February 13, 2018 at 4:16PM

    After hearing Carla Johnson speak at numerous events, I had her speak and lead workshops at meetings with marketing leaders from our top customers. It was the best reviewed session we ever did. Carla adapted and personalized the message to address the specific needs of the group and give them actionable takeaways they could implement in their businesses. She’s relevant and engaging and I can’t recommend her highly enough for any speaking engagement. She should definitely be on this list of top speakers for marketing conferences.

  • Ian Cleary| April 12, 2018 at 2:14PM

    Hi Shana, such a great list. Thanks for including me.