As you probably know, I've been attending a ton of events at Social Media Week Chicago the past few days. They've all been good, but some have been really great.
So, picking up where I left off on Wednesday:
Wednesday NightAfter getting the Part I blog up, I got to sessions on building a community (featuring @SteveGOGreen of #FoodieChats fame), the revenue impact of social media hosted by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, and checked out a pretty cool social experiment at Sapient Nitro.
You always pick up one or two really great takeaways (like the fact that Social consumers are 3x more likely to tell others about a positive experience!), so I feel that I made good choices there. Plus, the event at Sapient Nitro featured some very cool and thought provoking posters, so I'm hoping they'll share them online.
ThursdayIn the open, I talked about all the events being good and some being great -- Thursday was great. Two sessions specifically provided a lot of value. Jay Baer's session on The Now Revolution was really good; not only did he talk about social media strategy, but he also went into actual details moreso than many of the other sessions. I'm definitely going to be investing in his book, he's got some really brilliant stuff.
The other session that I really enjoyed was the Social Media Club of Chicago's panel Thursday evening. I was told last night that I'm a suck up (you know who you are), but I am going to throw a few bouquets out to the panel, organizers, and sponsors who did a great job (@calebgardner, @cm_socialmedia, @deutche, @jwillie, @laurahoots, and @wiredprworks).
But, what I enjoyed about the session was that it felt really social. So many of the events could have taken place at any conference across the country and you wouldn't have thought twice. People attend; speaker speaks; questions are answered; we're shuffled on to the next event. But this is a conference about social media -- and I think that the more interactive you can make the sessions, the more effective they are. And if you check out the #SMCChicago tweet stream, you'll see that this was in fact a really interactive session, which was both fun and insightful.
ConclusionThis was my first Social Media Week experience and I enjoyed it. I got to meet many of the social rockstars that I felt like I knew already from their online personas which was cool, but I also got to meet a lot of great new people that I look forward to socializing with.
I always tell people that social media is about the people and the message, but the people first. It's amazing that we can connect with people all over the place and I love continuing to strengthen the relationships I've formed with my favorite social people (I'd throw more bouquets, but don't want to get called a suck up again!). The people are what makes social such a transformative movement.
The one thing you hear at every social media event is 'how can I help you?' That's the crux of what social is, helping others, and not expecting anything in return, other than that maybe somebody will be able to help you if you ever need it. It's simple, but powerful.
Stay social my friends, and I'll see you at #SMW13!
What sessions did you go to? I'd love to hear from other folks to see how their experience was.
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