Went to this great event in London called Social Media Marketing 2010 yesterday. It was put on by Murray Newlands and Luke Brynley-Jones and had a very good line-up of speakers. Here are some of my findings of the day.
Brian Solis says screw case studies
Brian Solis kicked things off with first of all dissing social media case studies (much to the detriment of some of the other speakers on the programme!). His argument was that you can never replicate a success story as the circumstances for another company won’t be the same.
Brian then continued to speak about nicheworks, networks that are contextual and identified by interest graphs. He was basically saying that marketers will increasingly target the authority figures or influencers in their niche and get them to share their content via Facebook, Twitter, blogging etc. Nothing new there perhaps but the methodology is more scientific that it was. Instead of spraying and praying ads, it’s all about mapping out who these people are using Klout and other listening (read: monitoring) tools. He mentioned that Starbucks did exactly this to promote their new range of coffee.
Another interesting thing that Brian mentioned is that luxury brands find it very hard to connect to their users on social media. They are seen as exclusive and sought after in the market, and therefore the full online accessibility of Louis Vuitton, Rolls Royce or Mont Blanc could actually damage the brand.
Chris Brogan lives and and dies by his database
The headliner of the day was definitely Chris Brogan and although his points were slightly less corporate than the other speakers, he shared some of his best tactical tips for staying above the surface in the high seas of social media. His old mentor Jeff Pulver once told him that “you live or die by your database”. This means keeping track of all your network and labelling contacts by geography, how you know them and how well you know them. Chris said don’t rely on LinkedIn or other online networks for this as you never know what will happen to them. Instead he recommends using Batch Book which is a CRM tool for small businesses.
He also said that you have to diversify your network (especially geographically) to mitigate risk. If you are only networked with old school friends and people you work with, you’ll have nobody to turn to in case of a regional recession. And it makes travelling much more enjoyable when you can ask a local where to go for a nice meal.
Finally Chris said that you should spend 25% of your day listening (monitoring social media), 50% connecting (blog commenting, retweeting etc) and 25% creating and publishing (blog posts). This sounds like a good plan to me, my only question would be: when does Chris actually do any client work? I am sure he manages it somehow.
Henry Cowling made us laugh
The speaker that drew the most laughs was definitely Henry Cowling from the Viral Factory. His topic was all about how they create viral videos utilizing the old rug-pull gag and other techniques to get the next YouTube hit. Needless to say he has a few entertaining clips in his presentation and one very very saucy that I think he may or may not show at the next presentation. It was a campaign they made for Diesel that won numerous awards, see it at your own peril here. And send any complaints to Henry direct…
Sue Keogh taught us to write
There were some other great speakers there, including Sue Keogh telling everyone how to write effectively for blogging and social media. The importance of blog post titles cannot be talked about enough, Sue said Copyblogger’s rule is to put 50% of the work into the content of a post and 50% into coming up with the title. I completely agree with this and as Sue showed us what stories hit the front page of Digg, it’s pretty obvious that everyone loves a list! For further reading, check out her 7 Tips to Viral Writing.
Matt Rhodes caught a choo
The last speaker I will mention is Matt Rhodes from FreshNetworks who described how his company launched a very successful FourSquare campaign for Jimmy Choo aptly called Catch-A-Choo. It was basically about a Jimmy Choo ‘intern’ (which happened to the be Mat’s CEO) running around London for weeks and checking in to various venues on FourSquare. The first person (lady) that go there based on the update would win pair of Jimmy Choo trainers (roughly worth $400). It was obviously a huge success and they are now rolling this out to other cities in the world.
See you in San Francisco
Big thanks to the organizers and all the speakers of this conference. If it sounded like fun to you, be sure to check out the next Social Media Marketing conference in San Francisco on the 8th of July 2010. The line-up includes Chris Heuer, Ben Parr and Richard Jalichandra. And don’t forget to email me for discounts.
Oh yes of course, the most shocking revelation of the day was that high-tech social media guru, ninja, samurai and expert Chris Brogan uses a simple 50¢ egg timer to keep track of his time spent on social media. Set yourself 20 minutes for Twitter in the morning and as soon as it goes off, you’ll get a little shock that breaks your behavioral pattern. I say you should try it today, I know I will be.