SEMrush Selfies: Paul Goes to AdTech: NY; 5 Pieces of Luggage You Can‘t Leave Without


Imagine you are going to Ad:Tech NY with five pieces of luggage. You arrive at the airport, you check them in, you get on your flight and after you land in New York, you go through airport security, pass passport control and finally make your way to the luggage carousel. And then you discover that your bags are nowhere to be found.

The SEMrush team at ad:tech NY


 Would you walk away? Would you leave the airport?


The Brain Audit by Sean D’Souza @seandsouza on Twitter.

In The beginning of The Brain Audit, Sean D’Souza asks you to think of someone’s buying decision making process as a luggage delivery carousel because if you are at an airport, you can’t leave unless all of the bags that you brought with you are there.

Before stepping foot onto the ad:tech floor I made a list of “content” that I needed to hand over and “speak” to our wonderful booth visitors to enable them to make a buying decision.

I knew that If I didn’t provide all the information they needed, and didn’t deliver all of the “luggage,” then they wouldn’t leave the “airport” and wouldn’t be able to get their hands on SEMrush, the world's best completive intelligence tool.

After spending a few hours in the SEMrush booth, revealing how to use SEMrush to reverse engineer your competitors' traffic strategy, unfairly steal all of their secrets, and crush your competition, I decided to take a break and walk around the ad:tech floor.

After talking with many new and veteran Internet marketing strategists, I was reminded how overwhelming and overly complicated this space has become, especially for people just getting started on their journeys.


James Dorman (left): Founder and CEO of CULAUNCH

Albert Einstein famously said that “everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler” than it needs to be.


So, if I was just starting my career as a digital marketing strategist; here is my “simple” list of “luggage” that I wouldn’t want to leave ad:tech without.

Luggage Piece Number 1:A Suitcase of “Competitive Intelligence

One of the very first mistakes I made when I first got started my journey as an Internet marketing strategist was not studying my competition.


The Art Of War By Sun Tzu.

In one of the oldest, and best books I’ve ever read, Sun Tzu says that:

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.

While business is not like war, both in business and in war, one requires strategy to be successful; explaining why Bill Gates, easily one of, if not the most successful business minds of the 20th century was obsessed with his competitors. For more information about Bill Gates and his obsessions with the “competitive landscape” check out” Paul Allen, Idea Man.”


Paul Allen, Idea Man

Remembering what Sun Tzu said; Even if you know yourself, and not your competitors, for every battle you win you will lose one, I wasn’t surprised to see that many of the successful exhibitors on the ad:tech floor were SEMrush customers.

Here is a photo of one of our customers, WriterAccess, at the SEMrush Booth.

Photo taken at the SEMrush booth. Twitter: @ByronWhite


Photo taken at the Writer Access booth. Twitter: @ByronWhite


Photo taken at the booth. Twitter: @advertisedotcom 9_Paul_&Advertise_com

I also visited the booths of WhatRunsWhere and Adbeat. While these tools don’t cover the search advertising channels like SEMrush, they do cover display and contextual networks.

Photo taken at the WhatRunsWhere booth. Twitter:@WhatRunsWhere With: @jordanmatheson & @MaxTeitelbaum


Photo taken with Jared Orkin at the Adbeat booth. Twitter: @Adbeat


Luggage Piece Number 2: A Magnetic “Attraction Formula”

After you successfully reversed engineered your competitors' traffic strategy and discovered the perfect ad placements to attract your ideal customer“persona,” it’s time to setup yourattraction formula by following two easy steps.

For more information on creating your customer persona, click here to check out "Create Perfect Personas To Boost Your Content Marketing Efforts" by @ClareHopping.

Step 1: Write your magnetic sales copy and ad copy.

To do this, I recommend you read my upcoming blog post titled “Secret Jessica Simpson Formula to Converting Your Visitors into Loving Fans and Customers,” scheduled to be published on the 21st of November, 2015.

In the meantime, check out Brad Tiller's post, “The Secret To Creating A High-Converting Landing Page” andRocco Alberto Baladassarre’s post on “How To Write A High Converting AdWords Ad.

Twitter: @Rocco_Zebra_Adv & @bradtiller

Step 2: Design your magnetic landing pages and banner ads.

Photo taken at the 99designs booth with Kelly Inglis. Twitter:@99designs with @kinglis01


To design a magnetic landing page and banner ads, I recommend you start a contest on and have a crowd of graphic designers compete to deliver the most magical, aesthetically pleasing designs for your business.

Once the designs are in, simply choose the one you like the best, pay for it, and in just seven days you will have your landing page ready to go! It’s that easy!

Luggage Piece Number 3: A Suitcase For Your New Leads

Once you have your creatives complete, it’s time to get a suitcase to store all your new leads. To build an email list you need to first get a CRM (Customer Relationship Management System) and start creating “High Converting Inbound Marketing Strategy” and sales funnel to convert your new prospects into loyal fans and customers.

For more amazing SEMrush webinars click here.

For an amazing CRM, I recommend @Infusionsoft. Photo taken at the get booth.


If you are looking for a more basic, but more cost effective solution, I recommend you go with @getresponse


Luggage Piece Number 4: A Big Ruler

As the saying goes, “What doesn’t get measured, doesn’t get improved” so before you start driving traffic to your sales funneland getyour “suitcase” full of leads, I recommend you setup goals, events, and UTM tracking codes across your entire sales funnel.

For more information, feel free to checkout Vladimir Ponikarsovsky’s post titledEvent Tracking In Google Universal Analytics And Without The Help Of Tag Manager,” andHow TO Use UTM Tracking Codes In Google Analytics” by @marvinrussell

Luggage Piece Number 5: A Suitcase Full Of Leads

The last step is the most rewarding because this is where you actually see a “suitcase full of leads.” Simply take the secret traffic channels you discovered using your “Competitive Intelligence" suitcase (luggage piece number 1)plug them into your Google AdWords, and Microsoft adCenter Accounts and that’s all there is to it!

Photo taken at the @bing booth at @SMX


Congratulations, you just hot-wired your business, and put it into complete overdrive.

If you are interested in meeting the SEMrush team and closing the year strong, simply reference our SEMrush event schedule below.

Internet Summit  Raleigh Raleigh, NC November 18th – 19th Digital Summit Dallas Dallas, TX December 8th – 9th

I sincerely hope you've found this information useful, and hope you'll attend one of our exciting events soon!

Below you will find more pictures of myself with SEMrush customers and booth attendees.I can’t wait to see you all at the next event.




@adtech staff letting me use the Selfie Stick! 8-Paul_&_Ad_tech_Atendees

Other Notable Mentions: Photo Ofmyself, @paulklebanov winning a Starbucks gift card @CellotapeSP

19_CelloTape_BoothPhoto taken at the InsureShip booth. Twitter:@InsureShip_


Photo taken at the IQM booth. Twitter:@iqmcorporation


Photo taken at the ActiveProspect booth. Twitter:@activeprospect


Photo taken at the AdSage booth. Twitter:@adSage_Social


Photo taken at the MOO booth. Twitter:@moo


Photo taken at the Market Health booth with Jessika Ruiz. Twitter:@MarketHealth


Photo taken at the BriteVerify booth. Twitter:@briteverify


Photo taken at the Videogram booth. Twitter:@videogram41_VideoGramPhoto taken at the adloox booth. Twitter:@Adloox_Live

31_AdlooxPhoto taken at the TrackRevenue booth. Twitter:@TrackRevenue


Photo taken at the eZanga booth. Twitter:@eZangaInc33_eZangaPhoto taken at the ScientiaMobile booth. Twitter:@scientiamobile34_Scientiamobile

Photo taken at the imonomy booth. Twitter:@imonomy

35_ImonomyPhotos taken at the workfront booth. Twitter:@Workfront_Inc36_WorkFront

Photos taken at the Oracle Marketing Cloud booth. Twitter: @OracleMktgCloud37_Oracle

Photos taken at the Stirista booth. Twitter:@STIRISTA38_Stirista

Photos taken at the TUNE booth. Twitter:@tune39_tune

Photos taken at the AudienceXpress booth. Twitter:@AudienceXpress40_AudienceXpress

Goodbye Ad:Tech New York 2015! See you next year!


If you’re ready to reverse engineer your competitors' traffic strategy, steal all their secrets, and crush all of the competition in your industry then don’t forget to sign up for a free trial ofthe worlds #1 competitive intelligence tool, SEMrush.

If you have any questions feel free to email us at [email protected] or let us know in the comments. We would love to help!


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