A4U Expo 09 – Why You Should Go

August 10, 2009 Steve

A4U Expo 2009Just in case you’ve been stuck in a cave or wandering around the Australian Outback worrying the pants off your parents, in just over 9 weeks, THE affiliate event of the year kicks off at the ExCel in London – A4U Expo 2009.

Whilst this is nothing new for the masses that mosey on down for 2 days and 3 nights of outstanding seminars, networking and some serious partying, I wanted to put in my tuppence worth for anyone that has yet to go, or may be sitting on the fence trying to decide if it’s worth it …

Deciding whether to go

Last year was my first A4U Expo.  As someone relatively new to affiliate marketing, I first heard about it through the many other AM bloggers.  For anyone starting out, the cost may seem expensive (or even prohibitive) when you factor in travel, hotels, time off work etc..  However, I figured that if I’m really going to take AM seriously, I needed to get involved and find out first hand just how good it was.

Lammo did a great post last year on how you can attend A4U Expo on the cheap, so I decided to take the advice and entered 3 competitions, lost 2 and then managed to bag a ticket from the Sunshine.co.uk competition (promoted on Lammo’s blog) – thanks again Chris ;-)

Great … all I needed to do was book a hotel and job done. All in all I think it cost me around £250.  Whilst this is a fair amount, what you get in return is absolute value for money; I would have paid the full price for a ticket had I not won one of the competitions.  Time off work wasn’t a problem as I had lots of holiday left and decided to use a few days on my mini adventure … and travel? … well I’m lucky enough to be around 30 mins from London!

The Event

I opted for the full 2 day/3 night experience (and it is an experience!) which kicked off with the ice breaker evening before the first day of seminars.  I didn’t know a single person that was going to the Expo but figured, sod it, I’ll just go, say hello to a few people and see what happens.  What surprised me was how friendly most people were.  From the outside, affiliate marketing can seem quite an insular industry comprised of tight cliques that are not very receptive to new people, but that’s not what happened and couldn’t be any further from the truth.  Most people are more than happy to chat and welcome you.

Okay, it can be a little daunting going into a place full of people that you don’t know, but one thing’s for sure, there are always people in exactly the same boat and you’ll be surprised at just how easy it is to just unwind, chill and network.  By the end of the night I’d met some great people and was really pleased I’d decided to go for the whole event.

Next, the seminars.  A little worse for wear (okay, a lot!), I was glad that I decided to choose most of the seminars up front, so all I had to do was get up, shower and go straight to the first seminar of the day – Joost De Valk’s “WordPress SEO and Optimisation Strategies”.  It was then that the penny dropped and I really appreciated just what value for money the A4U Expo was going to be.  People will weight the many facets of the Expo differently (be it networking, seminars, catching up with old friends etc.), but for me, this is where it really paid off. I sat there like a crazed lunatic scribbling down as many tips as I could to take back and put into practice.  As it transpired, the slides were made available after the event for most of the talks, but it was worth taking extra notes on any areas discussed outside of the slide content. After the first seminar, it was time for a short break outside and a game of “I spy someone who feels worse than I do”, and then straight onto the next one.

The highlight seminar of the two days for me was Al Carlton’s “Million Dollar Blogging Strategies for Affiliates”.  I’d spoken to Al the night before completely unaware that he was presenting one of the seminars I’d planned to see the next day (another example of how friendly most people are). Al’s seminar proved to be a very popular choice from the Expo, and for me it was his honest and frank account of how he built up a blog from nothing to the giddy heights of today, sharing tips and strategies in a light hearted way and really engaging with the audience. Al will be speaking again in October.

To top it all off, there are usually 3 main networking nights/parties.  Last year it was the ice breaker before the first day (as mentioned above), then there was a Luxury Thames Cruise the second night (more food this year please!), and the post event “Ice Party” celebrations at The Fox.

So what are you going to do this year?

This year I made sure I took advantage of the ‘super early bird’ discount for £179 – bargain! The hotel is booked and conference paid for, so now it’s just a matter of counting down the weeks until it all kicks off.  If you haven’t grabbed a ticket yet, the surefire way is to get in early and make use of the early bird discount.  Alternatively, keep your eyes peeled on your favourite blogs as there will undoubtedly be a number of competitions again, so make sure you enter as many as you can.

Tickets are currently priced at £249 plus VAT, but will be going up to £349 on August 31st.  Remember, everything is included in the price, seminars, lunch, networking and to top it all off, there’s usually a free bar; something I certainly haven’t been used to at any conference I’ve been to!

submit to affiliates4u
Filed under: General, News

Subscribe to our RSS Feed

Ask a Question

3 Responses to “A4U Expo 09 – Why You Should Go”

  1. Thanks for the useful post, wanted to go last year but unfortunately couldn’t get the time off, this year is a different story! Got my earlybird pass and looking forward to it (even though I won’t know anyone).

    I was originally planning to travel home and back up each day, would you recommend staying in a hotel? Sounds like the after parties are good for networking and winding down..

  2. Hi Greg.

    Welcome to the site.

    I’d definitely recommend the hotel. I only live about 30-40 mins from London, but it’s the entire package that really makes the Expo. You get to unwind, talk to like minded people and have a laugh.

    You should be able to get a room for around £50/night at places like the Custom House (which is bloody good going for London – check the link to Lammo’s post). The Novotel is obviously nice, but it’s about 3 times the cost!

  3. Thanks Steve, going to get that booked ASAP :)
    Looking forward to it already!

Leave a Reply

Need help from an Affiliate Doctor?

Whether it’s affiliate marketing, SEO, copy writing, blogging, PPC or a question in general, visit the Ask a Doctor page and submit your details for a free check up!

Ask a doctor now