Our review of BrightonSEO April 2016

Posted under Content, PR, SEO, Social Media, Website

The digital marketing landscape changes so regularly that without training or upskilling you can be left behind.

The Media Matters team regularly skill-share in the office, but some external events are too good to pass up. Last month, five members of the team attended BrightonSEO – and here are our highlights from the day!

LauraLaura McGill, Head of Digital, wanted to find out more about Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP).

Since the chatter around AMP started and with the increasing buzz surrounding the subject building, I have been wondering whether this is something we should be proposing and implementing for our clients right now.

AMP HTML is a way to build web pages to ensure that they render fast.

Prior to visiting BrightonSEO I was hoping to gather some opinion on whether or not it is actually worth the effort. I found that in Dominic Woodman’s talk, ‘What is AMP and why should I care?”.

As if by magic Dominic presented a decision-making flow chart as part of his talk.

should i amp?

In a nutshell do it if:

  • You currently get lots of traffic from Google News
  • If you are regularly creating content like news and blogs
  • You want the enhanced distribution of content that comes with AMP
  • You get lots of mobile traffic
  • Your site is slow.

To learn more about AMP, click here.


Jim RoundJim Round, Senior Account Executive, found his first BrightonSEO to be more enjoyable than he imagined…

I particularly enjoyed the keynote speech from Nathalie Nahai, one of the leading experts in web psychology. It covered applying scientific principles from behavioural psychology to web design and content. I learnt a lot from this lecture, including how to use language to appeal to personality traits such as openness and extraversion.

Of course being of PR blood I also thought Catherine Warrilow’s speech on PR fails was highly entertaining. My favourite was the “I shop at Waitrose because…” campaign, where customers of the retailer commented on how much they enjoyed being able to shop without being surrounded by poor people!


_Greg_1-editedGreg Clark, Digital Marketing Executive, loved learning more on technical SEO…

I found the technical SEO seminar extremely informative. One key learning area was in using technical approaches to gather more information about a website’s architectural and crawl performance.

For example, Google uses ‘crawl budget’ – how efficiently you let Google crawl your website – as an important SEO ranking factor. Using tools such as DeepCrawl and Screaming Frog we can identify crawl waste (pages being unnecessarily crawled), instruct crawling bots on how to crawl our website most efficiently using sitemaps and site structure, and ensure Google spends as little time as possible crawling the wrong URLs.

If we want to get extra technical, we can also use a PC’s command box to analyse server logs and determine how deep Google is crawling, how much crawl time is being wasted, which sitemap pages are not being crawled. This is done with command code such as:

~$ awk ‘/Googlebot/ {print $7}’ combined.log | uniq –c | sort –nr >> unique_requests.txt


Alice---edited-resizedAlice Brazier, PR Account Executive, enjoyed learning more about Google snippets…

SEO is really important for PR professionals, so learning how the copy I write can affect a clients visibility on Google was really interesting.

solar energyGoogle snippets are boxes of text or images taken from a web page on the first page of Google, but not (as I was surprised to learn) from the first result on the first page.

Rob Bucci from STAT discussed the need to focus on which keywords are important to you, and bear in mind that Google favours ‘question and answer’ formats in copy. Without great copy, or images/tables, you’re unlikely to get selected for a featured snippet, even if your page is first on page one.

Read Rob’s snippet guide.


Ritish-Luchan1Ritish Luchan, Digital Marketing Executive, discussed his favourite session…

My highlight of BrightonSEO was learning more about Engagement Rate Optimisation (ERO). ERO is a systematic approach of improving the way the people interact with your communications.

Stephen Kenwright, Director of Search at Branded3 who delivered the talk, advised creating content hubs to cater for specific audiences. Content hubs are good for nurturing audiences, as once a user has landed on a trigger content page, it’s easier to optimise their route through your website from there. It’s important to micro-target and personalise rather than just driving everyone to one single page.


Want to improve your search ranking, or just want to find out more about SEO? Discover more on our SEO services.

Laura McGill

Laura is our digital guru – she loves the opportunity to be both creative and analytical, digging into clients’ analytics and developing insights to help creatively solve problems and fuel successful marketing campaigns.

She is Google Certified and eats, sleeps and breathes the latest developments in digital marketing. She’s passionate about it – and that is great news for all our clients.

She says she loves working with supportive and friendly colleagues at Media Matters. She describes herself as being tenacious, forthright and loves puppies and kittens! She also possesses an incredible attention to detail.

Away from work, she is busy renovating her home with partner Stef – and perhaps not surprisingly loves gaming and socialising.