The Best Social Media Conferences to Attend in the US
As a social media professional, one of the hardest (and most interesting) aspects of the job is to keep up with the ever-changing industry landscape: new players, new technology, new algorithms… A great way to do so, as well as to meet like-minded marketers and PR pros, is to attend a couple of social media conferences every year. Here’s a selection of the best US social media events to help you plan 2020.
Tip: The earlier you plan which events you want to attend in 2020, the cheaper you’ll pay for your tickets, transportation and hotels!
Is your favorite social media event missing from our list? Please add a comment below.
March 2020 Update: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis many of these events have canceled or moved to a virtual space. Check the social media conference's websites or join their mailing list for the latest updates.
The good news is many conferences are opening their virtual doors and dramatically reducing (or waiving entirely in some cases) the entrance price.
PR Week Awards - One-day event to celebrate the best in PR
- When: March 19, 2020
- Where: New York City, NY
- Ticket price range: From $650
One evening to celebrate the best in social media, PR, and digital advertising.
PubCon - Florida
- When: March 25-26, 2020
- Where: Fort Lauderdale, FL
- Ticket price range: From $499
Marketing Analytics and Data Science - West Conference
- When: March 31- April 2nd, 2020
- Where: San Francisco, CA
- Ticket price range: From $1895
MarTech West - An event to review and expand your marketing tech stack
- When: April 15-17, 2020
- Where: San Jose, CA
- Ticket price range: From $0 to $1995
As marketers and PR professionals, we all depend on a pretty significant tech stack, from Salesforce to Google Analytics, Hootsuite, Talkwalker and Marketo. This event is organized by Scott Brinker and describes itself as a "vendor-agnostic" conference. This is your chance to learn about technologies that will allow you to automate your processes and improve results.
Content Marketing Conference
- When: April 21 - 23rd, 2020
- Where: Boston, MA
- Ticket price range: From $349 to $1249
Social Media Week - New York
- When: May 5th - 7th, 2020
- Where: New York, NY
- Ticket price range: From $639
- When: May 12-13, 2020
- Where: Brooklyn, NY
- Ticket price range: from $100
MadCon in NYC is a brand new event this year: it promises to bring some pizzazz and a whole bunch of knowledge-sharing to one of NYC’s hippest neighborhoods.
Digital Marketing World Forum - London Global Series
- When: May 28-29th, 2020
- Where: London, UK
- Tickets price range: From £595
Okay fine, this one's not even in North America, but with a global outlook, and the same amount of flying time from New York as the West Coast, you shouldn't discount it just because it's across the pond.
Gartner Marketing Symposium/Xpo 2020 - A must for marketing leaders
- When: June 1-3, 2020
- Where: San Diego, CA
- Ticket price range: From $3500 ($3250 for the public sector)
Social Media Week - A great event to attend in Los Angeles
- When: June 17-18, 2020
- Where: Los Angeles, CA
- Ticket price range: From $639
Social Media Week Los Angeles - they say LA has the highest percentage of influencers in the world, but as this tweet makes clear, they’re not the only ones who attend.
— Social Media Week (@socialmediaweek) July 25, 2019
Social Fresh - The original social media conference... and a T-shirt cannon!
- When: November 5 & 6, 2020
- Where: Downtown Orlando, FL
- Ticket Price Range: From $797
Social Fresh has been helping marketers make sense of the social jungle for well over a decade. Audiences keep coming back for the high quality presentations, the networking, the sunny locales, and let's be honest - who doesn't love a T-shirt cannon?
Social Media Guru: I love social media and want to learn more about it.— Social Fresh (@socialfresh) October 7, 2019
SocialFresh: Okay, well are you coming to the conference?
Social Media Guru: I haven't bought tickets yet.
Social Fresh: pic.twitter.com/UIFGdPcD2z
FREE events to keep in mind if you can’t attend any of the above
- Masterclassing: you don’t have a full day to spare at a conference? Check out these digital masterclasses happening in all kinds of US cities (Chicago, Dallas, Atlanta, Minneapolis, etc.)
- Webinars (Talkwalker, Adweek, AdAge, PR Week) are a great way to educate yourselves for free without having to take a day to attend a conference.
- Virtual events such as the MarketingProfs Virtual Conference, for example. Note that most of the conferences mentioned above sometimes offer live streaming of its top keynotes or workshops or access to conference materials after the event.
Tip: keep an eye on the hashtags of the events that are most relevant to your job - you'll learn a lot and may identify interesting people with whom to connect.
Cover image credit: CC/Flickr/Mari Smith (addition of blog title, Talkwalker logo and blue polygon)
Is your favorite social media event missing from our list? Please add a comment at the end of the article.