ADOTAS – Happy 2014, everyone! The beginning of the new year has been quite harrowing, hasn’t it? Many of us have experienced bitter cold thanks to something called a “polar vortex,” while others have had to experience FSU fans rant and rave about ending the SEC’s streak of national championships. A good number of us will be making our annual trek to the desert: Right on the heels of the Consumer Electronics Show, thousands of marketers will be descending upon Sin City for the tenth time in nine years for Affiliate Summit West.
Brainchild of Missy Ward and Shawn Collins, Affiliate Summit is the premier conference for affiliates and publishers, networks, agencies, merchants and vendors. The three-day event offers educational sessions on the latest industry issues and fosters an environment of productive networking for one and all. Over 5,400 will be attending this year’s conference at the Paris Las Vegas, enjoying and learning in educational sessions covering web content, social marketing, lead generation, search engine optimization, performance tracking and tons of other topics under the affiliate marketing sun.
In addition to tons of education and networking, Affiliate Summit West offers top-notch, engaging keynotes. Monday morning features Steven Denton, Vice President of Marketing for eBay Enterprise. Denton joined eBay Enterprise in 2010 as the president of eBay Enterprise Media and was most recently responsible for leading the company’s display, retargeting and performance marketing organizations. Prior to joining eBay Enterprise, Denton served as the president of Rakuten LinkShare and has held leadership positions at FedEx, Pepsi and Cross Commerce Media.
Tuesday morning features Derek Flanzraich, the founder and CEO of Greatist, a health and fitness media startup working to make healthy living cool. Flanzraich was previously with Clicker.com (acquired by CBS) and NBC Universal’s Digital Entertainment Strategy & Operations, graduated from Harvard in 2010, and has been building brands and organizations that last since his dog-walking business at 10 years old.
I know what you’re thinking: “With all this awesome content and great networking, what else could Affiliate Summit have to offer?” Well, boys and girls, the networking and learning doesn’t limit itself to the confines of the conference walls! There are educational events such as the Mailer Meetup, where attendees can discuss the latest trends, topics, and technologies in email marketing. Then there are the epic parties, such as ShareASales’ perennial “Under the Stars” event, or Clickbooth’s “Industry Legends Unite” party, featuring hip-hop legends Warren G, 2 Live Crew, and Tone Loc. Add to the list the Affiliate Ball featuring B Real of Cypress Hill, Too Short, and hosted by Flavor Flav, and the Tech Generation event sponsored by HitPath and Liquid Data. And for you football fans, BMI Elite throws a great annual event at Lagasse’s Stadium for the NFL Playoffs – you just need to be working with them to be invited. In fact, there are so many events going on surrounding the Summit, that I can’t list them all here, so ask your fellow attendees and pay attention to invites given out in the exhibition hall. Just be aware that many of these events are RSVP-only or even invite-only, so don’t be upset if you can’t get into all of them.
Of course, you have a world of options outside of the conference and its related events – after all, you’re in Vegas, baby! From sightseeing to gambling, from clubs to shows to strip clubs, have a great time in Las Vegas, take it all in, and I’ll see you at the show! This is Warren G, signing out from 30,000 feet….