Social Lessons Learned (smiley face here)
Thank you for the many posts, kind words, special emails, sweet calls and overall feedback on Blogger Social (and thanks to readers who have put up with this becoming a Blogger Social blog in the interim...we will get back to marketing soon!).
Folks, I am going to have a tough time responding to the many amazing posts, pictures and words regarding the event but please know it's not for lack of want...you'd just be amazed at all there is to do in post-production. You see, I've taken the last week off of work to make Social as perfect as possible and I so very much need to get back to my (very patient!) clients and (very scary!) inbox. (As while I've been "sleeping" much has been happening in the world ;-)
So I thought I'd take a post to point out why I think Blogger Social was such a success. To be sure, this is solely my take. While it was an extraordinary experience that many of us shared, the experience was also very individual...which is exactly how it should be. So, on that note, here are my social lessons learned.
- Simplicity is powerful. Social's premise was simple--the chance to spend some social time together...which is what made it such a powerful value proposition. (that said we didn't really keep it simple, we're marketers after all so elaborate is just part of our DNA ;-).
- Energy is essential. The community and the planning committee did a lot of build-up to the event but the energy was off the charts at the actual events because we had the right people and the right mix of venues spanning fun to magnificent.
- Egos are roadblocks (so it's best to just leave them at home). It was so wonderful to hear so many people enjoying themselves but the best compliment I received was that "It's so refreshing to be an event where there are no egos and everyone is so down to earth and happy."
- Memories are not only priceless--they increase in value over time. This truly is the ROI on Social for me. I've so many memories that I will savor for a lifetime. And then some.
- Time is precious. It matters what you do with your time, whom you spend it with and how much you enjoy what you do.
- Encouraging silliness is pivotal. When we encourage and permit silliness all pretense and nerves just wash away and we find that it's in those moments that we are most human. And most glorious.
- Trust is an asset that should never be held lightly, or taken for granted. You trusted us to deliver and we took that as seriously as any of our paid client projects. How could we not?
The journey is rewarding. So much of the joy for me was not only "at Social, but the road to Social." I cannot give enough thanks to my partner Drew and our newfound partner Magno and the many, many people who absolutely made Social a reality.
- Not taking no for the right reasons is the right thing to do. There are many in this community whom had very good reasons why they couldn't make it. But there are too many that contribute too much and let's just say that I just wouldn't take "no". Whether I had to charm, implore, insist or just get clever, I am so happy that I just wouldn't take no and focused you on opportunities over obstacles. Let's make that a mantra in our daily lives too, OK?
- Purity needs to be celebrated--and fiercely protected. Folks, this event was pure. I cannot adequately convey in words how paramount it was to hold the purity of it absolutely sacred. After all, this event was for marketing bloggers, by marketing bloggers and was 100% created, promoted and funded by marketing bloggers. And that's a big part of the reason it was so very magical.
- You absolutely, positively cannot manufacture, force or bottle WOM. I've said it before (oh so many, many times) and I'll say it again: one cannot force people to buzz about their product, service or experience...one can only provide an exemplary product, service or experience that is worthy of buzz. Because when we create value--and we truly value our audience--our job is 99% done. I promise. And I'll do all I can to keep proving that promise.
- Words are important, but actions even more so. Thank you for not only making the world smaller; but for acting like it. As I said during my speech on Saturday night, "The lesson that social media taught me? The world is getting smaller. The lesson that this community has taught me? The world better start acting like it. Because this community acts like it every single day, and we are all the better for it."
With representation of over 80 tremendous and talented individuals spanning 8 countries and 20 states I thank you for acting like it. You absolutely humble and honor me with your time, generosity and kindness. My time and energy is so very, very well spent with you--I cannot thank you enough for spending time with and supporting me. (It means more to me than all the money in the mint.)
PS: We will have a post-event survey that will circulate soon, please know we're being good little marketers in getting YOUR valuable feedback. We just need to beg a little more patience. Stay tuned.
PPS: Nope, it is not at all lost on me that all the time and money I spent on getting dolled-up for Saturday's big event all but pales in comparison to me wearing that silly $3 Lady Liberty hat for my Socialites. As it should be ;-). Please do watch this photo group as literally hundreds more photos will be added over the next seven days by attendees and our professional photographer.