Sunday, 8 November 2009

Social media

So I am back from the Big Apple, and one can say so many different things about this single experience.

I was participating in the IABC's Social Media Conference in New York and I was pleasantly surprised that there were quite a few men in the room. Here, you go to a communications meeting or forum or anywhere where one has to network and you encounter more heels than loafers. It was quite refreshing to have so much testosterone in the room.

Some of the presenters went over pretty well.

James Lynch of Amex basically opened the first morning session with a well thought out presentation of an equally well thought out social media strategy. I was quite impressed with how they have revolutionised the blog and made it hip, interactive and highly dynamic. And even though I have never met and may never meet Ed Gilligan, Vice Chairman, American Express, kudos to him for leadership in actively leading employee communications at the company. It is not every senior executive who would take such a hands-on role in speaking to employees about issues that matter to them - engaging them on such a deeply personal level.

Steve Crescenzo was also quite an animated and compelling speaker, and I agree that you cannot force a social media policy. You have to have a communications plan before you plan any type of social media strategy. Too often we get caught up in wanting to be in and on every app available and to what end? To have your brand uselessly saturating cyberspace?

Great presentations as well from the Fleishman-Hillard duo and our keynote speaker, Aedhmar Hynes. I am sorry I missed the Dow Jones brand reputation session but hopefully the presentation will be comprehensive enough to make up for this.

It was a good conference. There could have been greater opportunity for social networking. I mean, so much was crammed into the 1.5 days that you really could not get around and meet everyone, but the conversations that were had proved to be meaningful nonetheless. Hoping to keep the conversations going as we all go back home and back to the proverbial drawing boards.


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