Best Conferences for Small Businesses in 2017

Best Conferences for Small Businesses in 2017

To run a successful business, you need to get out of the shadow of the competition. And in order to do so, you need to be well prepared and always learning.

If you’re running a business, particularly a small one, your responsibilities are always changing. The time involved in keeping an operation successful means that odds are, you can’t keep up with all the new developments in laws, marketing, technology, and trends. This is why we have business conferences.

Not to mention, every year there are developments that make the job of running a business easier. You want to jump on board with all of these, as quickly as you can. Attending one (or all) of these small business conferences in 2017 will give you the tools to outperform your competition and make the most of any business venture. And with innovative demos and lineups that feature some amazing keynotes, you’ll be surprised how much fun a conference can be.


OMMA (Online Media, Marketing, and Advertising)
Run by MediaPost Communications, the OMMA conferences are among the most respected and helpful conferences every year. Regardless of your specific sector, online media and other forms of communication are both more turbulent and important than ever before. You have to keep up with these changes, and the OMMA conferences in cities around the U.S. and Europe are the way to do it. MediaPost Communications has been in the marketing and PR game for decades, and they are the holding company for dozens of conferences, blogs, and communications enterprises.

Both Forbes and Inc. have touted Pubcon as one of the most informative and helpful conferences for business to develop their marketing, SEO, social media, and PR. For nearly two decades, Pubcon has brought together entrepreneurs and media experts from around the globe to Las Vegas to exchange ideas and techniques. Most helpful are their labs which offer you the chance to connect personally with experts on a specific subject.


Small Business Expo
With dates in major cities all over the U.S. and no entry fee, there’s no reason to miss the world’s largest small business conference. Particularly for those with a business-to-business company, this is the greatest networking event you’ll find. Hundreds of exhibitors show and thousands of attendees make this an invaluable resource.

America’s Small Business Summit
Every year in Washington D.C. the U.S. Chamber of Commerce hosts this massive networking event, trade show, and award ceremony. The annual Dream Big Awards go to the best small businesses of the year and are presented at America’s Small Business Summit.

Past speakers have included the likes of Steve Forbes and government officials like CIA Director Ge. Michael Hayden.

Product Launch

With past launches that include breakthrough programs like Evernote and Waze, DEMO is the go-to conference if you’re launching a digital product. Even if you aren’t launching a product, it’s the spot to see all of the top new apps and software for the year. It’s held in a number of major cities, around the world, so you can surely make it to one.

Launch Festival
Launch is specifically tailored to small businesses and startup: finding them support and funding. Every year in San Francisco, launch brings together 15,000 like-minded people with big dreams, hoping to make them a reality. The conference is free and lasts for four days.

Fun and Alternative

South by Southwest (SXSW)
Odds are you’re familiar with SXSW, or you’ve at least heard the name. Every spring in Austin, TX, “South by” brings together the most creative, innovative, and influential entrepreneurs and business-folk into much more than a conference. It’s more like a business festival.

While SXSW is well known for music and film exhibitions, the conference covers everything in the business world from marketing to fashion to journalism. It’s certainly the most diverse and fun conference of the year, and its influence is like everything else in Texas: huge.

Hosted by the cloud software company Salesforce, Dreamforce is four days of intensive business education and rockin’ music. The 2016 festival is headlined by U2 and features keynotes from CEOs to politicians to astronauts. They even offer a number of training programs and certifications throughout the conference, so you’re sure to have a jam-packed few days.

The World Domination Summit
The World Domination Summit in Portland, Oregon is like the Woodstock of small business conferences. They dub themselves “a weekend of strategizing and adventure”. The conference has grown to attendees numbering over 10,000, and in addition to the usual suspects of a business conference, you’ll find Guinness World Records, Bollywood dancing, and lots of yoga.

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