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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Yesterday was my first experience at a Social Media Event. For the last two years I've been hearing about Social Marketing meet-up groups, conferences and the like and never really had the desire to attend - until now.

With so much happening in the world of social media, I thought now would be a good time to hear from industry leaders and better understand how they are managing social media withing their businesses and more importantly how they are using it to connect with prospects and customers alike.

With most events like BlogWell, your experience is colored by the sessions you attend. Although some were a bit underwhelming, others definitely left and impression on me. I always say that if you can leave an industry conference with just one practical idea that you implement, it more than pays for itself. And that was certainly the case with a particular session that I sat in on.

In listening to the team from Scholastic, which boasts over 145,000 Facebook Fans (OK, I'm old school. I should say "Likes"), I learned that by integrating multiple forms of promotion you can build and engaged following. Scholastic used print, email, and sweepstakes to create large spikes in following an have taken things to the next level with their own social network,

It's through a well articulated strategy, marketing teamwork, and a strong editorial team that Scholastic has truly found a way to effectively leverage the power of social media.

The other highlight of the conference was the Social Media Ethics Briefing: Staying Out of Trouble by Andy Sernovitz, @sernovitz CEO, Social Media Business Council. Although I thought this was going to be another dry, uninteresting diatribe on "doing the right thing," Andy took the time to really bring the reality of ethics to social media and letting the blogger in the room know that we have the opportunity to set the example for others. This was powerful and effective when considering that there were some very influential people in the room.

The last part of the conference that I found so impressive was the use of social media at the show. I sat in the breakouts with my TweetDeck open and couldn't believe the frequency and quality of the Tweets! Truly amazing. But then again, what would you expect at a social media conference?

This was the 11th BlogWell and I'm sure there will be many more in the months and years ahead. From my perspective the conference was valuable. My only recommendation is to really find some very dynamic speakers for the breakouts that are a bit more engaging. Although some of the content was beneficial, delivery is EVERYTHING!

To check out the Tweets from the event, search for #BlogWell on Twitter.


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