The best social media conferences to attend in person in 2021
What’s hot, what’s best practice in social media changes quickly.
Keeping up with these changes can sometimes become a full-time job itself for the curious social media professional.
The landscape of social media includes: new players, new technology, changing algorithms… And now, for the first time in over a year: in-person conferences once more!
The chance to meet and interchange ideas with like-minded marketers and PR pros is an essential part of growth in the social media industry.
Tip: the earlier you plan which events to attend, the less you’ll pay for tickets, transportation and accommodation.
Is your favorite social media event missing from our list? Please share it in a comment at the bottom.
Social Media Strategies Summit - Must-attend event for senior-level marketers
Where: Anaheim, Chicago, New York City
When: 4 events throughout the year
Ticket price range: from $299
Just look at the confirmed speakers for the first Social Media Strategies Summit of the year in Anaheim! They’re the marketing decision makers for big brands such as Netflix, Pandora, PlayStation, Microsoft, and Pinterest. How cool would it be to meet them in person?
This is a great event for senior marketers who want to network and take their social media strategy to the next level.
Social Media Week LA - A great event to attend in Los Angeles
When: June 29-July 1, 2021
Where: Los Angeles, CA & Virtual
Ticket price range: $179-$314
This event is geared towards influencer marketers. Make the most of your brand’s Hollywood moment and network with the best of them at this unique moment in time.
The price is also extremely accessible for the marketer who’s ready to make a splash on the big stage.
Affiliate Summit - East
When: July 19-20, 2021
Where: NYC, NY
Ticket price range: From $149
The Affiliate Summit: East is the perfect place to turn those URL building opportunities into IRL opportunities.
ANA Digital and Social Media Conference, 2021
When: July 19-21, 2021
Where: Minneapolis, MN
Ticket price range: from $430
ANA’s Digital & Social Media Conference will be one of the first in a long time to be held in person. #WelcomeBackToLiveEvents indeed.
Grow Brand DTC Conference
When: Aug 2-5, 2021
Where: NYC, NY
Ticket price range: Free for virtual, from $49 for in-person.
The GROW Conference, true to its name, focuses on how your DTC brand can climb the rungs of digital storefronts through powerful digital marketing. At an exceedingly affordable price point for an in-person event, and totally free for “make-believe” attendees, this is a conference aimed at the one-stop shop marketers, the solo-preneurs, or just those who want to build their story-telling ability.
PubCon - Florida
When: August 3-5, 2021
Where: Miami, FL
No one’s more excited by the return of live events than PubCon. One of the longest running social media conferences, their in-person Miami event promises to be full of useful strategies for media pros.
Podcast Movement, 2021
When: August 3-6, 2021
Where: Nashville, TN
Ticket price range: from $180
The Podcast Movement Conference is the perfect place for podcasters, ad buyers for podcasts, and other digital marketers looking to dip their toe into the world of digital audio marketing to congregate and learn together.
As we profiled earlier in the year: podcasting offers an intimate setting to create a direct connection between brand, host, and listener. Ads on podcasts tend to return a dollar spent at $2.42. It’s easy to understand why this space would need professional conferencing and networking.
SEM PDX | Engage, 2021
When: August 5-6, 2021
Where: Portland, OR & virtual
Ticket price range: from $99 for virtual attendees
Engage PDX focuses on search engine marketing for West Coast marketing professionals. The event this year is focusing on a hybrid virtual and physical conference.
Gartner Marketing Symposium | Xpo 2021 - A must for marketing leaders
When: Aug 31 - Sept 2, 2021
Where: TBD Americas, and Virtual
Ticket price range: From $1,250
With seven tracks to choose from, a CMO Circle to network on a high level, and a location TBD, but also virtual, this event promises to be a can’t miss for high-level marketers.
When: September 22-25, 2021
Where: Austin, TX & Virtual
Ticket price range: From $250 virtually and $275 in-person
Finance, and marketing finance is a huge space. This virtual and in-person hybrid set-up allows you to meet and greet with all the YouTubers, podcasters, and other influencers in the finance space and help grow your brand's digital footprint.
The Social Shake Up
Where: Atlanta, GA
When: September 22-23, 2021
Ticket price range: $895 - $3,245
“Carefully curated speakers and attendees comprising of social media’s top movers and shakers” from across corporate America is how this conference describes their guest list. You’ll get the opportunity to hear about extraordinary success in the social media space - and be posed questions to challenge yourself and your brand to help get you there.
Mosseri and the Instagram team are already well along the way in developing Instagram for Kids, which will include various safeguards.https://t.co/7Jgs13ydfq— The Social Shake-Up (@social_shakeup) June 4, 2021
Grow, learn, network, repeat. The Social Shake Up promises a very different and welcome vibe to marketers who’ve been at the home office for the past year.
Digital Marketing World Forum - America West
When: 22 September, 2021
Where: Virtual and TBD
Ticket price range: from $175
DMWF is an industry-leading event for digital marketers, and features powerful thought leadership from some of the biggest brands on the planet. Learn how the brands did it, and where a creative spark can lead your brand.
Content Marketing World
When: September 28-31, 2021
Where: Cleveland, OH
Ticket price range: From $699
Digital Sales and Marketing Conference 2021
When: October 5-7, 2021
Where: Hartford, CT & Virtual
Ticket price range: TBD
Digital Sales and Marketing Conference is not only offering the hybrid event format we should expect to see become more common going forward, it features top notch speakers like Marcus Sheridan and friend of the blog, Ann Handley.
Inbound 2021 - Excellence in thought leadership for the digital marketer
When: October 12-14, 2021
Ticket price range: Free - $89
Marketing Profs B2B Forum
When: October 13-14, 2021
Where: Chicago, IL
Ticket price range: From $595
Even though it’s virtual this event is a must-see for digital marketers. This year features an appearance by Hasan Minhaj, plus leaders from major CPG and martech brands. With a $0 get in the door price, there’s no reason not to check it out.
PRSA International Conference - The event of the year for PR pros
When: October 17-19, 2021
Where: Orlando, FL
Ticket price range: From $995
Marketing Analytics and Data Science Conference
When: October 25-26, 2021
Where: Palm Beach, FL
Tickets price range: From $1795
About MADS: Marketing Analytics and Data Science Conference
This conference has combined the power of marketing analytics with data science for several years now. Learning how to take best practice from data science is essential for creating meaningful and trustworthy marketing results and benchmarks.
Forrester's Data Strategy & Insights Conference
When: November 18-19, 2021
Where: Austin, TX & Virtual
Tickets price range: From $1750
This event is described as “Clear. Confident. Connected” which are three traits marketers need in abundance, especially when it comes to data, strategy, and time-to-insight reduction.
Learn from some of the sharpest analytical minds in corporate America, in one of the country’s fastest growing tech hubs.
Digital Summit - Conferences
When: Various dates from August onwards
• Minneapolis • Atlanta. • Kansas City • Philadelphia
• Washington, D.C. • Detroit • Portland • Nashville
• Tampa • Chicago • Raleigh • Dallas
Ticket price range: From $295
Getting the band back on the road, Digital Summit’s two-day packed event are probably coming to a city near you this summer and fall!
The sessions are short and insightful, and are also reasonably priced for brands who are starting to realize the need to build a social audience.
Still to be determined:
Global Growth Marketing Conference
Ticket price range: From $511
SMX West - Search Marketing Expo
Where: West Coast, TBD
Ticket price range: From $499
Who should go: SEO specialists, search marketing professionals, marketing analytics managers
What an exciting time. It’s great to welcome back live events.
Leave a comment and tell us:
• Are you excited about the return of live, in-person events?
• Will you be attending one this year, or waiting until the future?
• Which event from this list looks the best to you?
• Did we miss an event you think should be on this list?
See you on the conference floor!