Use this handy guide to determine which marketing conferences and events deserve a spot on your calendar.

Here, you’ll find:

  • How conferences have evolved in the last few years
  • 9 innovative marketing conferences worth attending
  • What to expect from each event
  • The types of sessions and speakers at each conference

Industry conferences give you the opportunity to learn more about your field, stay up to date on the latest developments, and gather inspiration (and ideally a to-do list) you can bring back to your team. 

But since we first started highlighting marketing conferences back in 2019, the world has changed. With the pandemic shaking up safety measures, travel logistics, and all in-person gatherings, many marketing conferences moved online or ceased operations. 

These days, there are still varied feelings among attendees when it comes to the safety of large-group gatherings. MarTech reports that “interest in virtual events is likely to remain high, as the timeline for a return to in-person events remains uncertain.”

As a result, many brands have brought back or continued hosting their events virtually or in hybrid form, rather than fully IRL. 

Here are the top marketing conferences worth traveling — or simply blocking off your calendar — for. 

Image via Unsplash

At the end of the day, marketing is about connection. (Image: Unsplash)

1. Inbound

HubSpot’s highly anticipated marketing event is part conference, part festival. Each year, the brand brings together a mix of industry leaders from big-name brands and celebrity entrepreneurs to share their knowledge. 

With interactive booths, live entertainment, a buzzy food truck lawn, and hundreds of sessions across multiple venue spaces, expect valuable lessons and takeaways for every type of marketer at Inbound. 

This year, for Inbound’s first hybrid event, expect inspiring talks from the likes of President Barack Obama, Dr. Jane Goodall, Viola Davis, and Glennon Doyle.

How to attend: In person, hybrid, or virtually

When: Sept. 6-9, 2022

Where: Boston, MA

2. Brandweek Summit

Adweek bills its annual conference — back in person in 2022 — as an opportunity to “experience an unparalleled array of intimate sessions and exciting activities designed to educate, entertain and foster new connections with industry power players.”

More than 1,000 senior-level brand marketers and industry leaders are slated to gather for this 5-day event covering all things advertising in today’s marketing climate and beyond. Expect speakers and session leaders from brands including Chobani, Hyundai, Uncommon James, Marriott, Gatorade, and the Harlem Globetrotters. 

How to attend: In person, hybrid, or virtually

When: Sept. 12-16, 2022

Where: Miami, FL

3. Content Marketing World

Content is a key part of any good digital marketing strategy’s foundation. This conference wants to arm attendees with creative ideas, organizational tools, and effective insights to ensure their content marketing is top notch.

With both in-person and virtual attending options available, there’s no excuse not to take this opportunity to gather insights that’ll take your content efforts to the next level.

How to attend: In person, hybrid, or virtually

When: Sept. 13-16, 2022 (in person), Sept. 21-22, 2022 (online)

Where: Cleveland, OH

4. SearchLove

Looking for insight into SEO best practices, mobile search, Google algorithm updates, and PPC for inbound marketers? Distilled’s SearchLove conference has you covered.  

This conference covers all things search. Expect sessions on topics like how to sift through analytics data, integrating PR and SEO, finding your brand voice, and much more. Past speakers have come from the likes of Moz, Microsoft, Unbounce, and HubSpot. 

How to attend: In person or virtually via a video ticket 

When: March 13-14, 2023

Where: San Diego, CA

marketing conference

Many brands have brought back or continued hosting their events virtually or in hybrid form, rather than fully IRL. (Image: Unsplash)

5. Social Media Marketing World

Get the lowdown on the latest in social media marketing at this results-driven conference. Over the course of three days, expert speakers will cover social strategy, social advertising, content marketing, video marketing, analytics, customer advocacy, and more.

With plenty of sessions, workshops, and after-hours parties to choose from, this is the go-to conference for many social media marketers, digital marketing managers, agency owners, consultants, network marketers, and corporate marketers alike. 

Those who register get the chance to attend IRL or livestream via any device. They also get access to video recordings and presentation slide decks of all available content included.

How to attend: In person, hybrid, or virtually via livestream

When: March 13-15, 2023

Where: San Diego, CA

6. MozCon

Stay ahead of the curve while learning next-level tactics on everything from ranking higher to making better data-driven decisions at this three-day search marketing extravaganza.

MozCon describes itself as “summer camp for marketers.” Hear from a variety of knowledgeable session leaders while networking with those well-versed in SEO, content marketing, paid search, social media, and agencies.

How to attend: In person or virtually via a video ticket

When: Aug. 7-9, 2023

Where: Seattle, WA

7. Industry Preview

Find out what’s new, next, and on the horizon in the world of marketing technology at this AdExchanger conference.

In the past, the event has billed itself as “an intimate and exclusive one-day conference for senior executives in the data-driven digital media and marketing technology ecosystem focused on what to expect in the coming year.”

Attendees can expect dozens of visionary speakers and session options in between mingling and networking with hundreds of fellow industry pros. 

How to attend: In person

When: 2023 date not yet announced

Where: 2023 location not yet announced

8. DigiMarCon

For those looking to leave a conference with pages (whether actual or digital) of actionable insights, look no further than one of the famed DigiMarCon events. 

With a program designed to help attendees build and develop their audience, expect to learn about growing traffic, creating brand awareness, leveraging the latest tools, and plenty more.

No matter your region, there’s a DigiMarCon gathering for you: they host location-specific events in 40 cities worldwide. In the U.S. alone, look for conferences in the East, Mid-Atlantic, Pacific Northwest, Midwest, the South, Silicon Valley, and beyond.

How to attend: In person, hybrid, or virtually

When: Dates vary

Where: Locations vary

taking notes at a marketing conference

Industry conferences give you the opportunity to gather inspiration and create a to-do list to bring back to your team. (Image: Unsplash)

9. Digital Summit

Digital Summit wants to empower attendees to go from just another fish in the sea to becoming marketing leaders. Their multi-city events offer engaging info sessions on all aspects of marketing: content, search, email, mobile, UX and design, social, and strategy.

The success of the Digital Summit series has caused the event to grow, spanning various dates and cities throughout the year. Not only that, but they’re proactively working to continue making this in-person event as safe as possible. 

Look for these conferences to pop up in cities including New York City, Minneapolis, Boston, Chicago, Seattle, Los Angeles, and more.

How to attend: In person or virtually via video ticket

When: Dates vary

Where: Locations vary

The takeaway

At the end of the day, marketing is about connection. 

When you attend marketing conferences that let you connect with ideas, strategies, and people who are passionate about the same things as you, amazing things can happen.

And now, with most of these events offering virtual options, it’s easier than ever to learn from the pros and gain game-changing insights that’ll help you and your company soar.

This article has been updated and was originally published in November 2019.

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