Digital Marketing and Social Media Conference

In this all-day conference, you will learn how to engage your customers and prospects online through your website and social media and track your activities so that you know what is working and what needs to be adjusted. Join us to build your marketing toolkit and take a time-out to learn more!

8:30 am – 9:30 am Semantic SEO is Changing the Google Search Game (presented by: Sarah Best)

Advances in AI and large language models (LLMs) have created a sea change in how Google is ranking websites, and businesses that are losing their rankings are, at times, seeing significant decreases in revenue. During this session, we’ll discuss how Google’s algorithm has evolved over time, what semantic SEO is, and how to optimize your website in response to recent algorithm changes. We’ll review  foundational SEO strategies, share tools that can make SEO easier, and look into our 🔮 to prepare for other potential disruptions to search including social search and conversational search tools like Google Bard and Chat GPT.

Session Objectives:

  • Learn the three types of search
  • Be able to discuss the marketing activities that influence search
  • Discover how to optimize content for semantic search
  • Walk away with a checklist for evaluating a competitor, evaluating a piece of content on your site for search-engine friendliness, and a list of tools that can help

9:30 am – 9:40 am BREAK

9:40 am – 11:40 am Creating Professional Videos In-House to Help Grow Your Business (presented by: Faith Dey)

There may be times when your business wants to outsource video production, but just can’t. In this interactive session, Faith will share the steps to create pro-quality videos, whether for internal company communications, attracting new business or serving your current clients. You’ll have an opportunity to check out cost-effective video equipment, as well as watch a simple filming setup and demonstration that you can replicate on your own.

Key Takeaways

  • Identify and plan video styles that provide long-term value for your business
  • Learn the gear basics and how to set up like the pros
  • Filming tips (when you’re on camera as well as behind it)

11:40 am – 12:30 pm Lunch

12:30 pm – 2:20 pm 5 Star State of Mind: Engaging with Online Reviews (presented by: Emily Washcovick)

5 stars or 1 star, all reviews are an opportunity to market your business. Do you have a strategy for managing online reviews? 93% of customers read reviews of local businesses before picking one*, so it’s important to get it right. Engaging with reviews is an opportunity to strengthen your online reputation and champion your excellent customer service—two things that keep customers coming back. In this session, Yelp’s Small Business Expert Emily Washcovick covers:

  • Best ways to respond to reviews—good and bad
  • Responding to reviews to drive new and repeat business across all platforms
  • Learn how to manage your reputation and engage with users on Yelp and other review platforms.
  • Real examples and advice from businesses that are excellent at responding to reviews
  • How to leverage reviews to highlight your customer service in your marketing
  • How to drive new and repeat business across all platforms just by responding to reviews

*BrightLocal, 2020

2:20 pm – 2:30 pm BREAK

2:30 pm – 4:20 pm Steal like a marketer: 10 ideas you can leverage from the craft beer industry (presented by: Garth Beyer) 

Garth is a firm believer that some of the best marketing ideas and ways of thinking about your industry are found outside it. He’ll be sharing some of the most empathetic and thought-out marketing executions and marketing methodologies used by breweries, beer distributors, and bars like his own – and how you can apply them to your own brand(s), agency, clients, etc.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to let go of the “originality” trap
  • How to keep growing your brand awareness
  • How a single statement can be what helps you become and maintain your position as a leader in your industry

4:20 pm – 4:30 pm Complete session evaluation & wrap up for the day!


Location: Grainger Hall

Schedule: 8:30 am- 4:30 pm

Date: April 27, 2023

Fee: $299 (Includes boxed lunch)

Register Now for the Digital Marketing & Social Media Conference!or call 608-262-2451 to register. BONUS: Place 2 or more fall paid SBDC courses in your cart, and use discount code SBDC10 for 10% off. Classes must be purchased in the same transaction.

Registration policy: Payment will be required at time of registration. You must have either a credit card or valid UW-Madison funding string to be able to register.

Cancellation policy: If you cancel before the program begins, there is a $25 cancellation fee. If you cancel after the program begins you will be charged for the full program fee. To cancel, call registration at 608-262-3909.

Disability Statement: Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Contact the UW-Madison SBDC office at to request accommodations.

Learned so much and also gained confidence in my current strategies and inspiration for future ideas!

Sales & Marketing, Nutkrack

I learned so much, even as an intermediate social manager... The variety of topics was so great. I feel better equipped to take next steps across the board.

Content writer, Naviant (Fall 2021 attendee)

Every speaker was amazing.....I will be back

Samantha Burke, Universal Home Protection LLC

Such a wonderful day. Inspirational and informative.

Manager, Green Life Trading Co., 2023 participant

Each speaker took their ideas and introduced them at my level of understanding and provided simple, easy ideas and examples to implement... thank you for taking the fear out of marketing my business! I feel empowered to grow!

Justine Leo, Elbi Interiors, 2023 participant

The open conversations and ability to chat one-on-one with the presenters was amazing!

Marketing Specialist, UW Interdisciplinary Professional Programs, 2023 participant

The variety of topics made for a really fun day!

Marketing Specialist, UW E-Business Consortium, 2023 participant

Concise, good information that I can take home and continue to work on.

Randy, Cheers MKE


Faith Dey, Owner, Live Well Video


Faith started in front of cameras for ESPN Television and online productions. She has taught filming techniques and on-camera confidence tips through American Marketing Association – Madison Chapter, Madison College and Dane Buy Local. She is a past presenter and current Board Member of Social Media Breakfast Madison.

As a former brick-and-mortar business owner, as well as video producer within a creative marketing team, she relates closely to the internal needs of a business. She has created the online resource, “The Video Pro Playbook” for companies of all sizes that want to strategically create their own professional videos.

Live Well Video is a Video Partner for digital marketing campaigns, online course creation & YouTube channels, providing full-service filming, editing and instruction. Projects have helped businesses ranging from professional service providers to retailers, restaurants and real estate.

Sarah Best, CEO + Chief Strategist of Sarah Best Strategy

Sarah Best and her team have won over a dozen awards for their work including best use of a social media platform from Travel + Leisure Magazine. Recently selected as a 40 Under 40 by In Business Magazine, her work has been featured in SUCCESSMashableTechCrunchCrain’s Chicago BusinessNational Geographic Traveler, Chicago Tribune, and other publications. She was tapped to speak at Social Media Week for the MacArthur Foundation, has been selected twice for SXSW in 2014 and 2018. She is an alumna of New York University and holds a certificate in Entrepreneurship from Babson College / Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses. She is a Rotarian, and a board member of several nonprofits.


Emily Washcovick, Yelp’s Small Business Expert

As Yelp’s Small Business Expert, Emily hosts educational webinars and networking events to provide business owners with resources that help them succeed and grow in the world of online reviews. Emily’s expertise lies in customer engagement, reputation management, and all things digital marketing. Through thought leadership and speaking engagements, she shares industry insights that a variety of entrepreneurs can leverage for the future of their businesses. She is also the host of Behind the Review, a podcast from Yelp and Entrepreneur Media, where each episode features conversations with a business owner and a reviewer about the story and lessons behind their interactions.

Prior to joining Yelp back in 2014, Emily oversaw guest experience and large scale event execution at Marriott. She comes from a family of business owners and has a longstanding history of helping business owners learn about the world of online reviews and consumer engagement. In her spare time Emily works as a mental health advocate and frequently authors pieces and presents about work life balance, relationships and the importance of mental health for all.

Garth Beyer, Owner, Garth’s Brew Bar & 

Garth Beyer is the owner of the award-winning beer bar, Garth’s Brew Bar, and marketing manager of beverage production solutions for Encompass Technologies. He’s also a freelance beer writer, showing up in publications like Madison Magazine, Men’s Health, and others. Garth is also a Certified Cicerone® (the beer equivalent of a sommelier for wine) and loves going on hikes with his wife, two daughters and Bernese mountain dog.


The Wisconsin SBDC Network is a proud part of the Institute for Business & Entrepreneurship in the University of Wisconsin System.
It is funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Contact us at or call (608) 263-2221.