7 Learnings from BrightonSEO 2023

19 September 2023

By: Chad Mihaylov, Account Manager at Sagittarius

Category: Blogs

BrightonSEO is one of the world’s leading digital marketing conferences, and this year’s event did not disappoint! With over 10,000 attendees from over 100 countries, BrightonSEO was a hotbed of industry knowledge and innovation.

Many valuable insights and strategies were discussed over the course of the day, so I am narrowing these down to 7 of the best learnings for you.

Key Learnings

1. The Forgotten Art of Location Targeting

The Forgotten Art of location targeting, Matt Cocking

We start with Matthew Cocking, who emphasised that location targeting is often overlooked in digital advertising. He shared valuable insights into harnessing location data for creating highly focused campaigns:

  • Upload postcodes in bulk to precisely target specific geographic regions.
  • Make use of geocode data to pinpoint exact latitude and longitude coordinates.
  • Format data to align with ad editor requirements.
  • Highlight discounts and promotions to users within a 1km radius of a location to boost foot traffic to brick-and-mortar stores.

By becoming proficient in location targeting, advertisers can significantly improve the effectiveness of their ads with local audiences.

2. Programmatic Advertising in New Moments

Programmatic Advertising: Reach your audience in new moments, Harriet Howarth

Harriet Howarth then discussed how programmatic advertising is on the rise, with most companies now allocating a significant portion of their budgets to programmatic advertising. This approach provides diverse touchpoints for reaching consumers throughout their day, including;

  • Waking up and playing a mobile game, leveraging in-game ads
  • Audio on your daily commute, where audio ads receive 60% listen rates via podcasts
  • Digital out-of-home on the route to your office, boosting brand awareness
  • Gamification on website adverts during your working day
  • Connected TV ads in the home while watching TV
  • Finally, voice-activated ads through digital speakers, where 46% of listeners ask for more information when presented with an ad

Sagittarius has seen great success with programmatic advertising, running campaigns for clients like Liontrust and Baxi, which have returned incredible results.

3. Does Paid Social work for B2B marketing?

B2B marketing and paid social, does it work? Alex Jackson

Next, Alex Jackson talked about how paid social platforms like LinkedIn, Meta, and Quora offer significant reach and engagement opportunities in the B2B space and highlighted the following:

  • Unlike traditional methods, paid social allows passive intent building and cost-effective lead generation.
  • B2B shouldn’t just be considered a corporate, emotionless world; it’s about connecting with individuals seeking emotional resonance with your product or service. 
  • Tailoring content for different platforms and international markets is crucial to staying top-of-mind throughout the customer journey. 
  • B2B, paid social is a multi-faceted journey that requires precision, adaptability, and an understanding of the emotional drivers behind business decisions.

4. Leveraging AI for Paid Media

Leveraging Bard for paid media. How effective are the AI’s? Patrick Kearney

Patrick Kearney delved into AI’s role in paid media and its immense value for advertisers. Here are the key insights from his presentation:

  • Bard is great for scraping landing pages and can help understand clients’ businesses and offerings.
  • It can now extract CSV words, although this process can still be time-consuming and might require data cleanup.
  • Bard complements traditional keyword planners by filling gaps and generating keyword lists. 
  • It is essential to understand user intent through keyword analysis.

While AI provides significant support across different aspects of advertising, Patrick emphasises the importance of striking a balance between automation and human creativity.

5. Collaborate with AI to Enhance Creativity in Digital Marketing

AI: Nature vs Nurture, Sophie Howard

Continuing on the AI theme, Sophie Howard discussed the differences between Nature vs. Nurture and its impact on digital marketing. Her insights included:

  • AI Efficiency: Sophie emphasised AI’s role in boosting efficiency and saving time in advertising operations.
  • Data-Driven AI: She stressed the importance of data and predictive analytics in AI and machine learning for informed decision-making.
  • Adaptation: There is an increased need for advertisers to adapt and evolve alongside AI’s integration into advertising strategies.

Sophie’s presentation revealed the synergy between AI and human involvement in advertising, emphasising AI’s efficiency, data-driven insights, and adaptability in an evolving AI landscape.

6. Embrace Bing’s AI-Enhanced Search for Better ROI.

A New Bing: Microsoft Strikes Back, Chester Yang

Chester Young delved into the renewed relevance of Bing for advertisers and shared key insights during his presentation:

  • The importance of Bing Chat showcasing its 3x higher click-through rate and extended user engagement compared to conventional search engine results pages.
  • The incorporation of rich media formats and product advertisements within Bing Chat.
  • Finally, the expanding mobile traffic within Microsoft and its consequential effects on conversions and cost-per-acquisition (CPA).

Chester’s presentation highlighted the significance of considering alternative advertising platforms beyond the obvious choices, opening up new opportunities for advertisers.

7. Leveraging your Category Pages to boost SEO Performance

From Search to scale: how to leverage your category pages, Joshua George

Joshua George shared his three proven, effective strategies that have generated over £50 million in organic traffic for his clients:

  • Keyword Research: Understand different keyword types and target category pages for their higher search volumes and superior user experience.
  • Category Page Optimisation: Ensure category pages include target keywords in crucial elements and add topically relevant content to improve rankings.
  • Publish Relevant Blogs: Create blog posts that align with category page topics to build topical relevance and strategically distribute anchor text for linking.
  • Power Up Your Cluster: Acquire high-quality backlinks, control linking sites, topics, and anchor text whilst directing all backlinks to category pages within your cluster.

These strategies can help optimise category pages for better organic traffic and search engine rankings, enhancing the effectiveness of your SEO efforts.


BrightonSEO was a remarkable event, bringing thousands of marketing professionals together to explore the ever-evolving digital landscape. 

As digital marketers, staying agile, embracing innovation and adapting to changing consumer behaviours is essential. So, we look forward to applying all of the key takeaways and insights into our client’s strategies, continuing to progress in the continuously evolving field of digital.


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