22 Conferences to Attend in 2020

By: Hileman Group  | 03/11/2020

As a part of a constantly changing digital marketing universe, you never want to stop growing. Of course, a great way to discover what’s new and what’s working for your fellow marketers is to attend a conference or two every year.

But there’s no time to crawl through websites, calendars and Google results to look for the best events. So we did it for you!

We’ve rolled out our annual list of the top marketing, creative and technology conferences in 2020 so you can find what sparks your interest, book your flight and get ready to grow!

Adobe Summit

March 29-April 2, 2020 | Online Only

Why Attend: Brought to you by Marketo, this conference is all about creating amazing customer experiences. You’ll hear from the sharpest minds driving the digital transformation of marketing, advertising, IT and more. Sign on for engaging discussions, experience guided learning sessions and enjoy plenty of networking.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen, and Taco Bell senior VP of advertising and branding Tracee Larocca.

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25th Annual Healthcare Marketing & Physician Strategies Summit

April 5-7, 2020 | Las Vegas, NV

Why Attend: If you’re a senior-level healthcare marketer, this is one conference you won’t want to miss. The summit’s 25th installment offers attendees the opportunity to interact with industry leaders who guide strategy, marketing, business development, communications, digital efforts, physician relations and sales. With so many sessions and speakers to pick from, we bet you’ll come home a big winner.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include entrepreneur Vinh Giang, bestselling author Jay Baer and co-host of The AI Effect podcast Amber Mac.

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April 6-9, 2020 | Orlando, FL

Why Attend: If you’re looking for inspiration, you’ll find it at a place built on imagination: Walt Disney World, where DEVintersection returns this spring. Now in its ninth year, DEVintersection brings Microsoft leaders, engineers and industry experts together to educate, network and share their expertise. Here, questions are answered, strategies defined and relationships made.

Held at the gorgeous Swan and Dolphin Resort, the conference offers sessions ranging from building full-stack applications and custom UI components to making the most of XAML in Visual Studio and elevating debugging and testing skills.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Microsoft EVP Scott Guthrie, Centino Systems founder Anthony Nocentino and Walt Disney lead software engineer Michael Callaghan.

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Becker’s Hospital Review 11th Annual Meeting

April 6-9, 2020 | Chicago, IL

Why Attend: With over 4,000 attendees from hospitals and health systems across the country, this exclusive conference allows for strategic discussions around opportunities for the industry. If you’re a marketer at a healthcare provider, here’s your chance to learn from people who are redefining healthcare.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include former president George W. Bush, entrepreneur and Lakers legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson, and political strategist and analyst Donna Brazile.

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Midwest Digital Marketing Conference

April 8-10, 2020 | St. Louis, MO

Why Attend: The largest conference of its kind in the Midwest, MDMC will showcase over 90 speakers from Google, LinkedIn, GoDaddy, Adobe, Purina and more. Digital marketing evolves so quickly that staying on top of trends and technology is a must. With more than 80 sessions covering the hottest topics in marketing — from data and analytics to innovation and entrepreneurship — there’s no shortage of learning opportunities.

While you’re in town, be sure to take a tram ride inside the famed Gateway Arch. The view alone is worth the trip.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Pearce Delisle, North American manager of Content Marketing Evangelists at LinkedIn, as well as Eran Ben-Shushan, co-founder and CEO of Bizzabo.

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April 15-17, 2020 | San Jose, CA
October 6-8, 2020 | Boston, MA

Why Attend: Being a marketer is more challenging — and exciting — than ever. At MarTech, the focus is on both strategy and execution. Ideal for senior-level marketing professionals, this conference has the speakers, sessions and networking to empower you to become a stronger, more confident marketer. Catch MarTech West in San Jose this spring, or head out to Boston in the fall for MarTech East.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s MarTech West speakers include Walmart VP of e-commerce Tony Ralph and Salesforce’s principal of marketing insights Mathew Sweezey.

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Digital Summit Seattle

April 14-16, 2020 | Seattle, WA

Why Attend: When it comes to knowledge sharing, Digital Summit more than delivers. And while Digital Summit is hosting conferences across the calendar and across the U.S., here’s why we want to highlight the Seattle stop in April: Over 50 interactive sessions about analytics, content marketing, advanced SEO tactics, UX and design, social media and emerging technologies. (Plus, check out these speakers.)

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s Seattle speakers include Rand Fishkin of SparkToro, Radical Health’s CEO Ivelyse Andino, and rapper and entrepreneur Ja Rule.

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NN/g UX Conference

April 18-24, 2020 | New York, NY

Why Attend: With a week in the Big Apple, you get immersive courses about UX best practices and research-based methods from expert instructors and industry peers. And you can get UX-certified while you’re in town. You’ll leave with a fresh perspective and plenty of actionable insights.

Can’t make it to the Empire State? NN/g is also bringing its UX courses to Raleigh in May, San Francisco in June and more to be announced in 2020.

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Smashing Conference

April 21-22, 2020 | San Francisco, CA

Why Attend: Full of hands-on, interactive workshops focused on front-end and UX design, this conference is too informative — and too much fun — to miss. Take in live sessions on performance, accessibility, interface design, copywriting, designing for emotion, debugging and more. If your manager needs convincing, they’ve even created a letter for your boss.

SmashingConf offers a few conferences throughout the year, so if San Francisco isn’t for you, check out Austin in June or New York City in October.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s San Fran speakers include CSS-Tricks founder Chris Coyier, Mailchimp senior design manager Whitney Homans and New York Times international creative director Graham McDonnell.

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Experiential Marketing Summit

May 11-13, 2020 | Chicago, IL

Why Attend: Even in the age of digital marketing, nothing beats the power of personal experience. This international affair will show you why and how. Join over 1,800 attendees from around the globe in the Windy City for workshops, one-on-one chats, tech tours and more.

This mega-show brings together B2B and B2C brand-side marketers, event agency executives, tradeshow organizers, event strategists, and event technology experts, to name just a few.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Burger King CMO Fernando Machado and General Mills chief brand officer Brad Hiranaga.

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Health IT Marketing Conference (HITMC)

May 12-14, 2020 | Las Vegas, NV

Why Attend: The seventh installment of HITMC focuses on healthcare B2B and B2C marketing. Translation: if you’re a healthcare marketer, you’ve hit the jackpot.

Over three days, you’ll have an opportunity to learn the latest in content marketing, marketing automation, event marketing, branding and much more. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to network with other health IT marketers in a uniquely collaborative environment.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Lisa Henry, director of corporate marketing and communications for Mary Washington Healthcare, and Sarah Bennight, director of product marketing at Stericycle Communications Solutions.

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May 17-20, 2020 | Minneapolis, MN

Why Attend: If content is your passion, you’ll absolutely love Confab. From UX to storytelling, accessibility to structure, Confab brings together pros committed to making their content sing, engage and convert. Curated by content experts, Confab is the first conference dedicated entirely to content strategy.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Shopify’s Ryan Bigge, Slack’s Anna Pickard, BBC’s Katherine Bradshaw-Jones and HubSpot’s Beth Dunn.

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Adobe 99U Conference 2020

June 3-5, 2020 | New York, NY

Why Attend: What does it mean to be creative? The 12th Annual 99U Conference will answer that very question. This one-of-a-kind experience inspires creative professionals to bring their ideas to life, shape the future of the industry and redefine success.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include artist Shantell Martin, writer Anne Helen Peterson and Will Allen, VP of community products at Adobe.

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Search Marketing Expo (SMX) Advanced

June 8-10, 2020 | Seattle, WA
Why Attend:
 If you’re obsessed with SEO or SEM, SMX Advanced won’t disappoint. SMX has been a must-attend event for SEO and SEM professionals since 2007, and while first-timers can still enjoy SMX East this fall for a broader experience, this expert-level expo provides attendees with elite training to challenge even the most seasoned marketers.

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July 6-8, 2020 | Seattle, WA

Why Attend: This is not your typical marketing conference. MozCon offers three days of forward-thinking, actionable sessions covering topics ranging from SEO and brand development to social media and content marketing. Discover next-level tactics on everything from ranking higher in today’s evolving search landscape to making data-driven decisions in your marketing initiatives.

If you’re ready to soak up plenty of knowledge this summer, there may be no better spot for you than Seattle.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include Moz CEO Sarah Bird, Moz senior search scientist Britney Muller, Orbit Media Studios CMO Andy Crestodina and brand strategist Flavilla Fongang.

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August 18-21, 2020 | Boston, MA

Why Attend: INBOUND is all about uniting super-curious, question-asking professionals with big-name and break-out industry thinkers, high-octane events and boundless educational sessions. The purpose fueling it all? To help you grow your organization through inbound marketing. Make up to 24,000 new BFFs, including some of the best keynote speakers in the conference circuit.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s speakers include journalist Katie Couric, HubSpot co-founders Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah, and Once Upon a Farm co-founders Jennifer Garner and John Foraker.

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SHSMD Connections

September 13-16, 2020 | Chicago, IL

Why Attend: The largest healthcare systems conference of the year, the Society for Health Care Strategy & Market Development (SHSMD) brings together health system communications and marketing pros from around the country. Connect here with your peers to stay ahead of the constantly evolving world of healthcare. You’ll have your choice of over 60 sessions in five targeted learning tracks, plus the opportunity to participate in preconference workshops.

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An Event Apart

October 5-7, 2020 | Orlando, FL

Why Attend: Three days of design, code and content. Put simply, it’s heaven on earth for tech-minded marketers. With 17 sessions and an intense focus on digital design, UX, content, code and more, if you’re looking for deep insights on the digital marketing landscape, you’ll find them here

If Florida in the fall doesn’t appeal to you, you catch An Event Apart on other dates in Washington, Seattle, Boston and Minneapolis and more locations.

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

This year’s Orlando speakers include web development guru Rachel Andrew, internationally known speaker Derek Featherstone, and web designer and author Brad Frost.

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Content Marketing World

October 13-16, 2020 | Cleveland, OH

Why Attend: Every year, we partner with this event, and every year, we learn new ways to rock the color orange. CMWorld gives you access to over 125 sessions and workshops designed to help you create epic content marketing. In fact, there are tracks covering every aspect of content marketing so you can build your own agenda. (Be sure to catch the kickoff party at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame!)

Geeked to Hear Them Speak

Last year’s speakers included Emmy-nominated writer Mindy Kaling, McLellan Marketing Group Founder Drew McLellan and writer and actor Henry Rollins. Who will they have lined up for 2020? Check back with the conference site soon to see.

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Adobe MAX

October 19-21, 2020 | Los Angeles, CA

Why Attend: MAX brings together more than 14,000 creatives — from graphic and web designers, to creative and art directors, to film, video and motion graphics pros. The sessions, labs and workshops will help you get inspired, learn new skills and make new connections. Nicknamed the “Creativity Conference,” MAX is the perfect blend of information and inspiration, practical knowledge and creative magic.

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Sitecore Symposium 2020

October 26-29, 2020 | Chicago, IL

Why Attend: It’s three days jam-packed with insights and information touching an array of topics, including marketing, development, commerce and optimization. Listen to world-class, real-world success stories from some of the biggest brands on the planet, and learn all the technical details underneath. Discover how to build or evolve experiences that engage with your customers.

Details for the 2020 symposium are still in the works.

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MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum

November 3-6, 2020 | San Francisco, CA

Why Attend: We wish our profs were this fun in college. This conference is the place where leaders, innovators and true-blue marketers gather to learn about the latest in B2B marketing and share the secrets to their success. The forum is designed to help today’s marketers overcome their biggest challenges while learning what’s new, what’s hot and what’s really important when building sustainable marketing programs.

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