Last year I spoke at Social Slam; this year I was an attendee-only, but it was still a real high! What makes this event so special? The presentations are excellent and motivating. Attendees have the opportunity to speak with social media luminaries, online friends they have never met in person before, and other people just as enthusiastic as they are about social media.
I think of the old Miller Lite commercials… Visualize the large crowd in a full session yelling: Great Talks! Switch the camera to the crowds at the TweetUp or after party who shout: Live Networking! …. Great Talks! Live Networking!!
When I go to a one or two-day conference, I generally deem it a success if there were two good sessions, one of which I consider worth the price of admission. Once again I put nearly every session in that category at Social Slam – and not just because the price is reasonable!
I am a huge fan of the “slam” format that gives the conference its name: a speaker has ten minutes to present 10 good actionable ideas to improve social media performance. Three of the five presenters adhered to the slam format, so we were treated to great ideas on how to better participate on Google (@shanerhyne – LOVE the hats!), Facebook (@JenKaneCo) and Pinterest (@KimGarst). I WILL sign up for Google Author, have a FB plan, and try creating a “resources” board on Pinterest! Worth the admission!
I sort of hate the breakout sessions because I know I am missing something…but the two I attended were great. The new realities of SEO with @jfloyd, @ericpratum, @seanmcginnis and @rhogroupee provided solid advice on using organic real content to improve search results. Worth the admission! (One interesting insight: results are getting so personalized that objectives like top three in keyword search are almost meaningless.) How to build your Personal Online Brand with @markwschaefer, @kimgarst and jeffbullas was inspiring.
Amy @HowellMarketing did a great job of MC – and at promoting Memphis! Jason @jasonfalls got everyone excited about the program. As a struggling blogger, I really appreciated the 15 solid ideas provided by @jeffbullas. I will share three: try out negative headlines (things not to do), new research, and numbered lists – for more go buy his book! Clearly worth the admission!
I enjoyed the “fireside” chat with and the stories from three social media marketers in the trenches about how to reach the public. It was important to remember when they dissed Google+ and LinkedIn that they were all focusing on B2C…
And the conference closed on a high note with a good discussion of the value of qualitative research (why?) by @webby2001 and @tamadear; and on the future of digital marketing by @ducttape… Once again, worth the admission!!
What can you say about the opportunity to meet and talk with @jeffbullas @seanmcginnis and @jasonfalls? To finally meet twitter friends like @kerrygorgone in person? And to renew ties with the likes of @markwschaefer, @HowellMarketing and many others?
I vote Live Networking! …but it is a close call. (I will probably say more about networking in a later post…)
I had a similar experience a couple of years ago when I had the amazing opportunity to go to SXSW. I met and talked with Erik Qualman (@equalman) Guy Kawasaki (@GuyKawasaki) and Lewis Howes (@lewishowes). Having learnt so much from them online it was great to speak to them face to face.
It’s always great to mete face to face and further develop those online relationships we build! Hopefulyl we’ll have a chance to do it all over again next year! 🙂
Thanks for the shout out Gary. It was great to meet you in person, and I look forward to next year.
Thanks for the shout out Gary! Here’s to next year. Cheers!
Thanks for the shout out!
I was new to the slam portion of the conference. (I don’t think they had that at the first Social Slam, where I moderated a panel). I agree, it’s an innovative idea that provides concrete value. I know it was a good exercise to force me to cram as much information, as clearly as possible in a short time frame.
Thanks for the comment!
I can’t imagine how hard it is to do “10 in 10!” The day before soslam I held a workshop in Abingdon Va and turned a 2-hour session into a 3-hour one… You know your topic when you can convey a powerful message in 10 minutes! Great job!
Great panel! Great to meet you in person!!
Strangely it does seem to take the fact-to-face meeting to get the relationship to the next level… There is probably a message there for online education! Thanks Sean.
Absolutely: face-to-face is great! Did you find that the SXSW conference was so big that networking was difficult?