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8 Digital Marketing Conferences in September Worth Attending

Duck season. Rabbit season. Content marketing conference season.

There are tons of fantastic learning opportunities out there for pro and novice digital marketers alike, and it so happens that September (it’ll be here before you know it!) has an incredible lineup to check out.

So, without further ado, get out your calendars and—in the order in which they occur—let’s take a look at eight different digital marketing-related conferences happening that month and see if we can figure out which one(s) are going to be the programs you’ll tell your grandkids about 30 years from now.

1. Content Marketing World

Undoubtedly the biggest and one of the most popular content marketing conferences of the year, Content Marketing World, organized by the Content Marketing Institute, is being held September 8–11, 2014 at the Cleveland Convention Center in Cleveland, Ohio.

Prices range from $495 to $2,135, with various levels of activity and engagement included. Check out the details here:

“Content Marketing World is the one event where you can learn and network with the best and the brightest in the content marketing industry. You will leave with all the materials you need to take a content marketing strategy back to your team and to implement a content marketing plan that will grow your business and inspire your audience.”

Now in its fourth year, Content Marketing World has carved out an impressive place in the digital marketing space and continues to improve on previous years’ efforts. Take some time to review details of who’s speaking and about what—and don’t miss Kevin Spacey giving the closing keynote speech!

(Editor’s note: Shameless plug, but Contently CCO Shane Snow will be giving a talk at Content Marketing World on “Storytelling & the Next Level of Content Marketing.”)

2. Call to Action Conference

This one-day conference, organized by the landing page conversion experts at Unbounce, is predictably focused solely on improving conversion rates. The main event is being held September 12 at the SFU Goldcorp Center in Vancouver, British Columbia, and Unbounce is also hosting a welcome reception the night before the conference and a day of casual recreation for attendees the day after.

Ticket prices are just $499, which feels like a steal when you review the action-packed agenda.

“Jam-packed with actionable & exciting content by expert speakers, CTA Conf will make you jump out of your seat and implement what you’ve learned. You can expect keynotes, panels and discussions focused around landing page campaigns, conversion optimization, design and a/b testing.”

If your digital marketing efforts rely on conversion (whose doesn’t?), there’s a lot to love about this single-track series of talks and workshops.

3. INBOUND

Organized annually by Boston-based HubSpot, INBOUND may just be the most fun digital marketing conference of the month. There is loads of entertainment scheduled before and after the concert, including a concert, daily happy hours, and a casual tour of HubSpot HQ. It’s scheduled for September 15–18, 2014 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.

An all-access pass will cost you $1,199 (this is the current discount through August 15, when it goes up to $1,499), but you also have the option to attend only the four keynote addresses and the entertainment for just $149. If you’re a student with a valid student ID, you can get all the value of the all-access pass for just $199! Here’s their pitch:

“INBOUND’s purpose is to provide the inspiration, education, and connections you need to transform your business. This September, we will host thousands of marketing and sales professionals from almost every industry imaginable and from all corners of the globe at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.”

With keynote speakers like Martha Stewart, Simon Sinek, and David Meerman-Scott lined up, along with inbound experts like Chris Brogan, Guy Kawasaki, and John Janstch, you can expect some great learning. Get the full agenda here.

4. The FT Future of Marketing Summit

A one-day event, the Future of Marketing Summit organized by the Financial Times promises to be fast-paced and action-packed. It’s scheduled for September 17, 2014 and is being held at The Time Warner Center, 10 at the Park, in New York City.

Early-bird pricing (before August 15) is $1,195, and after that you’ll pay $1,495 for a ticket. For that price, you get a full day of insightful marketing information, networking opportunities, and two meals provided:

“The 2nd annual Future of Marketing Summit, hosted by the Financial Times, brings together the most forward-thinking marketers, innovators and entrepreneurs to discuss the leading edge of the evolving marketing landscape. Through a series of thought-provoking interviews, discussion, debate and case studies, this program will tackle the fundamental areas of communities, culture and creativity.”

Although it could just be selective attendee announcements causing this slant, it appears that the FT conference attracts more C-suite and director-level attendees than other major conferences; it’s also more heavily geared toward Fortune 500 businesses and above.

5. The Content Marketing Summit

The Content Marketing Summit, hosted by NewsCred, is scheduled for September 18, 2014, and you can show up a day early for an afternoon of pre-conference workshops on September 17. It’s being held at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York City. Unfortunately, no information is available regarding price—maybe it’s free??

“Bringing together 300+ leaders in marketing, media and technology, the second annual Content Marketing Summit will explore how content is redefining the future of marketing.”

Based on the feedback from last year, the Content Marketing Summit was a huge success, and this year’s list of speakers and agenda topics promises more of the same.

6. BrandManage Camp

BrandManage Camp has a dedicated, consistent following with many professionals returning year after year—after all, they’ve been going strong for 12 years. Their recap video from 2013 contains some really strong testimonials. This year’s conference is happening September 18–19, 2014 at the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas, Nev. Their focus is broad: branding in all its flavors.

Until the end of July, your ticket price will be $2,299. After that it goes up $100 until the end of August, then another $100 for the month of September. Discounts apply for groups as well as qualified government, nonprofit, and academic attendees.

“Now in its 12th year, the Brand ManageCamp marketing conference has become THE place to be to generate the FRESHideas brands need to survive – especially in these turbulent times. Join hundreds of other senior-level brand marketers for an oasis of fresh thinking and inspiration across a wide range of exciting, timely, and relevant subjects—including Brand Strategy, Innovation, Advertising, Brand Messaging, Content Marketing, Brand Experience, New Media, Insights, Creativity, Consumer/Customer Behavior, Leadership, Digital Marketing, Metrics, and more.”

The agenda shows a strong leaning toward digital marketing education, although classic branding disciplines make a fair showing as well. All the speakers are executives or expert authors in their fields, and you can see preview videos of many of them on the agenda page.

7. The Sales 2.0 Conference

While the Sales 2.0 Conference is focused primarily on sales, the agenda shows they do a good job of marrying sales and marketing, especially in the digital realm. The conference will occur on September 18, 2014 at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nev. (If you wanted to split up travel costs with a buddy, one of you could attend Sales 2.0 while the other attends BrandManage Camp! Of course, the one going to Sales 2.0 would probably lose his shirt at the craps table on September 19—but I digress.)

If you buy your ticket before August 14, you only pay $495 to attend Sales 2.0. The price goes up as high as $625 for latecomers, though.

“The Sales 2.0 Conference, Las Vegas will provide leaders in B2B sales, marketing and sales operation tactics that are proven to accelerate sales growth, enable strategic change, and transform your sales organization for success in 2014. You will learn insights from an expert community comprised of top sales executives, consultants, industry leaders, and analysts. Join us on September 18th; learn how to optimize sales process and strategy for improved results.”

If your job requirements involve direct selling, oversight of sales, or any communication between marketing and sales, you’re likely to find this conference valuable.

8. The AMA’s Annual Marketing Conference

While not limited strictly to digital marketing, the venerable AMA Conference is guaranteed to include plenty of actionable learning for digital marketing pros, along with exposure to other aspects of marketing that can help round out what you already know. It is scheduled for September 30–October 2, 2014, and is being held at the Sheraton New Orleans in New Orleans, La.

If you’re a member of the American Marketing Association, your ticket price is $1,200 for the main event. Non-members pay an additional $200. There are also a number of optional tutorials available for an extra $275 each.

“Join the AMA and over 400 marketing peers & thought leaders this fall as the AMA again provides inspiration, focus and motivation to help marketers deliver top results! The American Marketing Association’s Annual Conference will inspire you with rich content and expert insights from some of the nation’s best marketing minds. Attendees will leave up-to-date on the latest evolution of strategies and innovations.”

Again, the conference is not focused just on digital marketing, so their list of speakers and agenda items run the gamut of industries and marketing disciplines. But there’s sure to be fantastic information available, and you can access “sneak peeks” at many of the upcoming presentations at the AMA’s website.

So there are eight different options for sharpening your digital marketing tools with fresh ideas and insights in September. Of course, if you had roughly $10,000 (+ travel expenses) and a half-dozen clones of yourself to send to various points across North America, you could benefit from them all.

But since that’s out of reach for most of us, take some time to review the list above more closely and check out every linked site, and pick at least one that’s going to be your investment in yourself this fall. And while you’re there, let us know how it’s going @Contently on Twitter.

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