Neville Hobson

Figuring out the social media mix

04032009022smLast week, I spoke about social media and communication at three terrific events in London. I talked about all three in a segment for last Thursdayâ€s FIR episode 428 podcast.

That segment didnâ€t make it into the show, though, as I talked for far too long, nearly ten minutes. But rather than just delete that recording, itâ€s here.

So if you want to listen to some thoughts about these events while those thoughts were still fresh, listen right here with the embedded player, above, or download the MP3 file (4.5Mb, 9:53).

Time stamps for the content:

At the Social Media Influence event on Tuesday, I took part in a panel discussion nicely entitled “Managing Your Message and Your Reputation in the split-second age of Twitter.” So far, Iâ€ve seen only two blog posts about the event, by Ian Jindal and Paolo Valdemarin, plus one from co-organizer Matthew Yeomans.

Plenty of Twitter talk at the hashtag: #smi09. I used that same tag at Flickr for the few photos I took.

Ian mentions something in his post that is worth repeating – the wifi and cellular connectivity at the venue were simply awful. The wifi was next to useless and my O2 iPhone cellular connection simply didnâ€t reach into the conference room: ‘No Service†is all I got. A Vodafone connection gave me very weak 2G connectivity on my Nokia N95 8GB.

I recall a similar awful experience at last yearâ€s SMI at the same venue, the Cavendish Conference Centre. The companyâ€s website says that “the entire venue is covered by a wireless LAN for Internet access.” But it doesnâ€t work! Could be time to seek a new venue for next year, Matthew.

The photo above of Steve Lamb of Microsoft UK with his skate board (ask him about that!) speaking at the B2B Marketing conference on Wednesday illustrates pretty well a major point about authenticity and being genuine, something I believe is key to the effective use of social media in the overall communication mix.

During this event, lots of video was shot by Broadview which has culminated in a rather good B2B Marketing WebTV programme showcasing the event. The speakers including me are interviewed as well.

Check the Twitter hashtag #b2bsm09 for quite a lot of talk. Also my photos at Flickr under that same tag. And, check the discussion forum started by Dan Martin to keep the conversation going.

Given that I recorded my audio commentary on Thursday evening, I hadnâ€t yet done the MIPAA event which took place on Friday.

No video of that (yet: keep an eye on Simply-Communicate.com) but lots of Twitter chat on the hashtag #mipaasm09. Mostly me twittering (even though a good half of the people present said they use Twitter) which I find very useful as an aide memoire for what I saw as the hot topics at the event.

And there was plenty from each of the other speakers – Mark Borkowski, Marc Wright and Mark Iremonger – as youâ€ll see if you glance through the content at that tag.

My overall conclusion from these three events last week:

  1. Everywhere you go, people are trying to figure out where social media fits into the <add your word here> mix.
  2. Talk about Twitter (as opposed to talking on Twitter) permeated nearly every discussion at every event.
  3. Everyone I spoke to at each event wants to understand it all.

Finally, Iâ€ve posted my presentations from the B2B Marketing and MIPAA events at Slideshare (no presentation from SMI as that was a panel discussion):

A broadly similar theme for both (social media, changes in society, what it means and how to engage) with a specific auto industry focus in the MIPAA one with examples of who in the industry is doing what with social media.

Comments and suggestions most welcome on those presentations.

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