In May and June, I participated in 13 events as a moderator (six), panelist (four), and featured or keynote presenter (three). They weren't evenly dispersed; May brought a stretch of four events in two and a half days, while June had a span of three events in three cities within 48 hours. It was both thrilling and tiring, and I'm glad I get to return to the day job for a while. Along the way, I came up with a few thoughts on what can make events even better for all participants going forward.
My brain is still settling down after a revealing, relevant, and sometimes even raucous OMMA Social conference, which was held yesterday at the Crowne Plaza in New York. I have spent much of the day trying to clear out cobwebs and find a theme -- but, frankly, there were so many interesting factoids floating around, it's been hard to settle on one. Instead, I'm presenting ten things you missed by not going to OMMA Social....
One of the best lessons you can learn while engaging with social media is that you can never plan too early, as it's hard to tell when you'll really reap the fruits of your labor. If you're actively building a brand through social media and you're doing it right, you will be incredibly grateful down the road.
As is so often the case, I'm sitting here with two conflicting column ideas in my head, only to wonder if they are really in conflict at all. They are: Whether Twitter's true big moment came yesterday, when it gave in to the request of the State Department not to shut the site down for maintenance because of the role it is playing in the Iran election protests, or: Whether Facebook should have charged for vanity URLs, instead of once again giving away the store when it had something worth selling. How are these two stories related? One word: value.
If you think you've read everything you need to know about social media, maybe you should get your eyes checked. When you go, with any luck your optometrist will be Nathan Bonilla-Warford, O.D. in Tampa, Florida, as he can teach you a few things. Nathan reached out following last week's column about my optometrist uncle, who said my article was posted on an optometrists' forum. I thought his practical experience as a business owner grappling with social media should be shared with others. Here's an exclusive interview with Dr. Bonilla-Warford.
It's somehow typical that, only in the last day or so, I've seen a few headlines suggesting that Twitter's meteoric rise may be slowing down. That's how fast things are moving these days -- one day you're a Time cover story titled, "How Twitter Will Change the Way We Live" (what? It has replaced oxygen?), and five days later, Hubspot, in its "State of the Twittersphere" report, says that over half of Twitter users have no followers. OK, people. I guess it's time to fold up our Twitter accounts and go home. Not. But it is time to dig a …
During a late lunch (for me) or an early dinner (for my wife's grandparents) at Applebee's in Reading, Pa., I was distracted from figuring out how to eat my riblets when I heard the conversation inevitably turn to Twitter. My uncle, an optometrist, had been hearing about Twitter and wondered if he should tweet professionally. When I answered Uncle Glenn, I brought up a number of factors that he should consider when evaluating the service. I also compared his situation to that of Jeff, my father-in-law, a plastic surgeon in Dallas. Here are ten factors Glenn, Jeff, or anyone else …
Far be it from me to get all political on you guys, but, here goes: let's have a little chit-chat about China's shutdown of social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, as we head into the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests, in which students rallied for more democracy in China.
In the future, my dad will be a blogger. He'll create wikis. He'll have his work translated into languages spoken across Europe, Asia, and South America. He'll accomplish it effortlessly with Google Wave. I watched the 80-minute developer preview of Wave, and it's going to make nearly everyone a social media creator.
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