New Media Atlanta conference September 25, 2009

I’m at the New Media Atlanta conference at the Georgia Tech center. The room is packed, and wired. Everyone has a laptop and TweetDeck is on most of the screens. If you’re here, find me. I’m in the last row, at the very left seat. (Chris Brogan signed my book and told me the secret to getting on the New York Times bestseller list is to have Fortune 100 companies buy my book in bulk!)

9:30 am Introductions all around. Chris Brogan author of the new New York Times best seller Trust Agents just came up and got his black and yellow bowling shirt. Meeting other sponsors. Cool new tool called “twitteringo.” Play along at

10am New Media Atlanta raising money to help Atlanta flood victims. Go to the New Media Atlanta and click on the donate icon.

10:05 is helping flood victims get back on their feet in some of the communities hardest-hit by the 500-year flood. If you’re in Atlanta, and have time tomorrow, sign up and get moving.

Jeff Turner, Zeek Interactive @jeffturner

10:12 Jeff Turner, Zeek interactive is now speaking. He says that we have already decided that social media is here to stay. “Leadership in the New Science” Margaret Wheatley. Her book changed Jeff Turned and confirmed that his frustrations with big business were justified.

10:18 Jeff Turner says social media is the love child of new science and internet technologies. Not quite sure what he means by this. Most people looking at social media incorrectly. They’re not using it correctly.

10:31 Most important thing about social media is organization. People at the top of organizations are not in control. Social media defines, shapes and participates in the conversation. Self-organization is what’s going on with social media. Margaret Wheatley says life seeks order, but uses messes to get there. People need to learn how to promote connection, interaction, and conversations around commerce. This is a new mindset, and the tools are going to change. Try to understand, adapt, and enjoy the change. That’s how you’ll make the decisions that move your business forward.

10:35 Cornerstone behavior: Inclusiveness, adaptability, and listening should be predominant social skills. Social media won’t go away. Ever. The vast majority of your day should be spent listening – using tools that make listening better. Try as a listening tool.

10:41 How do you take the conversations that happen around businesses and bring it inside? Ask yourself: How can my company have these kinds of conversations? How can these conversations make a difference in your organization? Use social media tools to make this happen.

Brent Leary

10:45 Brent Leary, CRM essentials – Engagement is the new marketing metric. (Customer Relationship Management) has great numbers. Check it out!

11:00 ConversationPrism by Brian Solis. Growing exponentially.

11:02 Social on the go is key. Jeff Bezos says 35 percent of all book sales are for Kindle when that option is available. Emotional engagement is key to social media. If your customers are mad, they might stay mad. If they love you, they’ll share the love. Key business marketing concept.

11:03: How can you use social media to get people to know you exist and like you enough to give you an opportunity for a business relationship? Use Listening is more important than asking consumers what they want or need.

11:10 Social media can humanize our interactions with customers. Customers are telling businesses that they should be social. I think: As younger customers age, they will think of social media as something natural and normal. It’s the Facebook gene that seems implanted into anyone who is 16 years of age or younger. But “old folks” have to make this work for everyone – especially younger customers.

11:12 Automation, Analysis, Audacity. The three keys of Social Media. automation of content creation and distribution. Analysis means capturing “social and web-based data” and audacity is focusing on “captivating people and customers.”

Follow Brent Leary @brentleary

Reggie and Nicole Nicolay: What is the Audience looking for and how to measure it @nik_nik and @cyberhomes

11:15 So much opportunity for customers to connect with businesses today: twitter, blogs, forums, social bookmarketing, letters, SMS, video, reviews, ratings, consult a professional, etc. Businesses are now present where I’m present. Consumer Generated Media (CGM) is growing rapidly. Social networking driving the way for CGM. Social media has surpassed email usage. Our trust for people we dno’t know has skyrocketed. Placing more trust in the unknown.

11:30 Social media goes for the underdog – and facts don’t really matter. Be careful companies!

11:40 Ford did an interesting Social Media project with Reggie and Nicole. They also had a good experience with Lowes. Reggie likes SwankMommy (necklaces). They like the do-good social media works.

Seth Miller, Digital Marketing Director for Turner Broadcasting System, TNT, and Turner Classic Movies

11:45 How do big companies use social media? How does Turner look at collaboration and how can we work it for the company? Big revelation: people love us (they watch more TV now than 10 years ago). That’s a good thing. Social media helps us find more users: collaboration. Social media is a tool for self-expression. Nobody tells you what to say. It’s your own thoughts, emotions, feelings being expressed. Cool engagement around the show “Leverage” on TNT. Working with creative fans.

11:58 The untapped potential for business is making something personal into a movement. How do you feed people who have a love for the business. How can you dream up something interesting to extend business outward from something we’ve done?

11:59 Turner is a pinecone – it’s where the focus is in the picture, but it’s not the whole picture. Turner sees social media as everything else in the picture. There’s so much untapped potential from our audiences.

Jonathan Miller: Let’s Make Mondays @mondaymorning

Noon: Comparing Mondays and beer. I’m not sure I’m following. Something about how blueberries look like tiny yeast particles. Cracker Barrel and Beatles beer event are best weekend material.

12:05: Aha! moment. He started a brewery and uses social media to get the word out. Too bad you can’t send beer through Twitter. they only belong to a few social networks. Go deeply and increase relevant brand communications. We see value of connecting with future consumers. Build awareness, trustbuilding, and anticipation.

12:07 On Monday nights, they brew beer – and half of all people who come to brew beer with them found them on Twitter. Use blog to push out information and now people trust them (“although we are unsavory characters.”) They haven’t launched yet. Used it for feedback on new names for beer and labels, etc.

12:08 Social media to connect on B2B. Connect to other breweries on Twitter. Connect to other companies that are already doing what they want to do. B2B: find vendors via twitter.

12:09 Drink good beer with good people and make every day count (even Mondays). @mondaynight and

Lunch is over.

Michael Mullineaux, Nokia Siemens Networks @mmullineaux

1:07 Nokia is looking to its customers to see whta is going on in the marketplace. The way we depending on voice, we now depend on email. Heard of v-voice? You will. Machine to machine communications: telematics. Your refrigerator can talk to your computer. A whole host of new startups will exit out of economic malaise and create value.

1:15 provide choice (not control), deliver meaning. Use content to create context. (ThinkGlink has been pushing its clients to do this). Make sure there is quality, not quantity.

1:20 The consumer approach: evolution from trust to conversation to merit to control (less control). The Social Network of 1 is important point. consumers need contextual relevance. Social networks will be an enabler for those.

1:21 5 Big Trends: cloud computing, real-time svsc computing, brand utility, ME advertising, and socialization.

1:22 How do you manage a 100x-200x explosion in traffic? Real issue telecom providers are dealing with. Not a lot of time. Huge successes of platforms like Twitter and googlevoice show huge evolution. Telecoms are struggling with what to after delivering information to you, how can they capture and charge customers for it.

1:27: Networks, service, efficiency and experience are the four categories of interest. What is augmented reality?

1:30 What is the biggest NEXT thing? The answer is the operator realize that there is 12-24 month window within which they have to get cost basis to world class level, properly orient capital to deliver, learn your needs and use about mobile in this world. if these operators don’t learn more about consumers preferences, will be a sea change in how people consumer these media. Lots of interest from carriers and communities. Want to make it valuable for their consumers.

Carol Flammer, Flammer PR : Reputation Managment mRelevance

1:32 Your reputation is being built on line. Are you participating? Online discussions provide consumers with greater voice. Google your name on a regular basis. What do other people see? Three possibilities: Nothing? Wrong results? (share name with another company) Negative stuff?

1:40 How fix bad search results? Start with a top-notch fully-SEOd website. If you share name with another company, results might not be best. .com ranks highest. Next, start blogging. Power of an optimized blog. It’s the foundation of everything you do online. (We know that here at Think like a search engine and optimize. Flamer’s blog blogs about her client. Blogs are top 5 referral sources for website. Bowen (one of her clients) uses it to inform about the area. Next, set up Facebook site. Host an engagement for your top clients/customers (affiliate/promotional marketing as its best). Consider launching extra blogs and blogging in more places. There is a lot of power of industry sites. “New Homes Section” is a new home blog that you could blog on. Finally, use online PR. repurpose press releases online and use SEO.

Toby Bloomberg, Bloomberg Marketing – Brand Building through Social Media – Blogs as @tobydiva

1:57 A brand is a promise that delivers on consumer expectations. It says to the consumer, if you do business with me, here is what you can expect. What is branding? Find the simple story in the product, and present it in an articulate and intelligent, persuasive way.

2:00 Brand value of including social media will be included as build out brand value. Social media is a new value proposition. Consumers will expect that when you go on a tweet, someone will respond to you. Website isn’t static interface. Marketers set expectations and will begin to demand those. Social media is really people.

2:03 Google loves DivaMarketing. Optimize blogs for SEO. Companies are watching.

2:05 Managing a brand in the social media world is like _(fill in the blank). Some options: wrestling, christmas, trying to manage 8-year old birthday party. Asking for your input.

2:06 The challenge is to do it in a way that’s not overbranding Needs to be authentic, honest, transparent, people-first

2:07 social media brings company people, customers, and employees together. How do you keep the brand promise? How do you “collaborate” with stakeholders to grow the brand? Which tactics serve the brand most effectively?

2:17 – crowd sourcing to get deposits vs. Wells Fargo-Wachovia blog. WF/W is very corporate. Tweets apologize for bad service. IdeaBlob is all about helping their customer. and from DivaMarketing to get the poweroint.

Jeff Turner moderates Bert Dumars, VP ebiz Nuell Rubermaid; Seth Miller (Turner); Peter Fasano (Digital Math and Logic – Social computing and taquerias)

2:22 What are the initial obstacles to creating a social media platform? Dumars: Grayco babies toughest brand to start with social marketing. Have to be careful. Legal wanted to evaluate tweets and blog posts. You’re one word from a lawsuit always. Brand manager felt it was a reasonable cost and thought it was worth the risk.

2:25 Seth: Biggest challenge is education. more and more social media, people using it, means people catching onto the end of the train. A big part of my job is getting people educated enough to make a big business decision. Peter: can come from marketing and finance – create the budget needed to move into social media space.

2:31 Jeff Turner: What are companies listening for? Bert: Grayco had unique objectives. Go back 2.5 years. Lot of research that said, they had strong word of mouth and big brand awarness, but mom’s felt Fortune 500 company that didn’t care. We went out and talked to mom bloggers and asked them what want to hear from Grayco and how engage? I want to know why you care. Are Grayco employees parents? We listened to them and understand what they were saying. Took several months. Then, we went out and commented on mom blog. Trying to get feel of who is out there, who has influence and who wanted to get to know better before getting into that space. Find out what they wanted to hear from us. We didn’t want to blog up our brand. We wanted to do it soft and slow.

2:55 Good conversation. Bottomline: Don’t stalk your customers. Great lesson. How do you monitor yourself? and

3:00 Chris Brogan is next – should have already been up but conference is running late. I have to leave for the airport no later than 3:45 – hope that I get to hear his whole talk. He is the big cahuna.

3:03 Matt Fagioli and Brad Nix said they’re watching the social media commenting and understood last panel was going well and they’re watching that. So, they let it run long.

Chris Brogan, author “Trust Agents,” President New Marketing Labs

3:05 Chris Brogan takes the stage. Always confront the thing you fear most head on. Chris has been watching BackNoise

3:08 I look for patterns and break them. i like looking at systems and getting out. Twitter is the surface. If you’re a business, you’re listening rather than doing something else. Learn all about how listening is where this gets done. Thing is, that’s where the power comes out of this. Getting people to do what you asked them to do and have them feel like you’ve done something for them.

3:10 There is new kind of program going on. Google is freaked out by social networking. CB asks Twitter what he should and not Google. Tweetups. When was the last time a brand made you feel like a brand not a person who buys something. We talk about the things that make us feel good and piss us off. Answer to that.

3:13 Marketing is also customer service. Who is managing their social presence? Fifty percent of one person and three interns. How much cost to fix it? more than one time. No one gives it much more than one intern. You should put an $80,000 person on that. is it any less important than software. Take one ad and don’t put in USA today, hire an employee.

3:15 Networks and human code. How do you get people to care about what you’re talking about? Spend 12x talking about other people as your own. RT people – add the reciprocity.

3:15 Don’t use corporate name as logo or @twitter. It’s about people. Connect Facebook personal and professional.

3:17 Companies are afraid of blogging because they’re afraid people comment. And yet, they’ll say it anyway. So, you might as well get used to it. Look at the competitors. “Gate Jumping.” Industries exist to sustain themselves. No king ever ordered a revolution. The system within you work won’t support the new idea because the system has to maintain the integrity. (Example: families staying together for kids.)

3:21 Put a face on your business. Learning how to be one of us is so important. Matt Cutts, Google, comments on Google. His job is to shut down people who try to game the SEO system.

3:22 Chris Brogan’s newsletter has a 78% open rate. Why? He says that he talks to people like people. It will translate into service. Divert banner ad money into social media.

3:25 Bloggers: What do you complain about?

3:26 You need old-fashioned marketing, too. It’s all about chips.

3:29: Good advice: Connect before you need it. Don’t look for a job after you’ve already lost yours.

3:30 Brogan uses “batchbook.” Connect everyone and be at the elbow of every deal. Don’t ask for anything.

3:35 Listen, Ask, Reciprocate, Comment and Comment Back. 5 Tips for getting Twitter followers that matter.

3:38 Every conversation shouldn’t be public: fly down, stuff in teeth. Customer service should be from a point of dignity. Shouldn’t be in a big stage. Moving to questions soon.

3:40 Practice simple touchpoints loyalty. Thank them for talking about you nicely. Or, badly. You can accept criticsm or ignore it. “Thank You” is disarming. Chris Brogan says he thanks people who pick up Trust Agents at the bookstore.

3:41 Google “Grow Bigger Ears” for listening information. Can planting same stuff in ground but it will ultimately fail. Need to learn about crop rotation. Important to keep levity and humanity in everything we do.

3:42 Use to find your own backnoise.

3:50 Chris Brogan shares as much as he can on his blog for free. He gives 98% or so of all stuff for free every day because it’s awesome lead generation. Look for the right ROI in social media: It has a $$$$ attached to it.

Thanks to @closetohome for taking the picture.