My first day at the Black Hat World event, UnGagged, was everything I could have hoped for. Three rooms filled with participants listening to experts sharing their secrets on SEO and marketing in a completely unfiltered way. Each speaker gave their take on the next best practice of marketing strategy to the point that I felt my fingers were going to fall off from typing so fast.
What I have enjoyed most about the first day is that the schedule is filled with seven sessions of speakers and their varying knowledge sets. Although the conference is targeted at SEO, the variety of topics you can listen to are broad. Talks range from Reverse-Engineering to An Insight into Illegal SEO Activities and the Money it Brings.
In my opinion, the best speech of the day came from Russell McAthy on Data-Driven Marketing: A How-to Guide. His take on building proper attribution models to drive the next best step in customer propensity to buy was powerful, to say the least. He broke down each step of the customer journey and how they should be targeted through specific campaigns. He noted that ROI is always the goal but showed that making the direct leap is not always possible, and we as marketers should focus on driving the consumer's actions that will eventually lead to this by not short-changing the process.
Overall I feel that UnGagged delivers on its promise to provide the best speakers who deliver raw, uncensored content and help drive your marketing strategies. I've taken more than a few notes on day one and look forward to hearing more from each speaker. My highlight for day two comes from a talk by Akiva Ben-Ezra, Online Marketing Secrets I Learned While Working on the Presidential Campaign. He discusses his personal journey in helping the Trump campaign to Victory.