May 17, 2010

Free State Social #FSSocial.

We came. We checked-in. We saw. We tweeted. Most importantly, we learned. And then we blogged about it.

We had the great opportunity to attend Free State Social, which was hopefully the first annual of many Free State Social events to come. While there have been a vast number of recaps, write-ups, etc. following the event (and you can find most of them in the recap section of the Free State Social website), below is a small collection of the things that impacted us most.

Chris Brogan (follow on Twitter: @chrisbrogan)

  • Having a social media department is like having a phone department. 100% agreed.  Regardless of how a company decides to utilize social media, it’s a responsibility that can fall on the entire company – not just one person/department. This gives a more honest, personable view of your company/brand to the world. Not the filtered, often diluted view.
  • “Would you say that at a party?” – Things to think about before you post/comment in social media. Too often we scream/broadcast information out in social media. No one wants to hear how great we think we are. Have conversations and make connections to prove it.

Shawna Coronado (Follow on Twitter: @ShawnaCoronado)

  • In social media – you are the brand. I think too many people forget this. If the content you provide via social media is stiff or stodgy, people will view your brand as such. If all you ever talk about is yourself (as a company/brand) people will get turned off and view you as arrogant. By being nice, personable and most importantly – being yourself, people begin to identify with you and stop viewing you as that looming corporate entity.

Sarah Evans (Follow on Twitter: @prsarahevans)

  • Think like those you’re trying to reach. Too often corporations utilize social media and come off sounding, well, too corporate. With social media being an easy way to reach out and engage with people, companies should think and speak like those that they’re trying to reach.

Jeremiah Owyang (Follow on Twitter: @jowyang)

  • Always ask why. When contemplating a social media tactic, companies should stop before jumping in and ask why. Don’t create a Facebook page or a Twitter account just to have one – you must realize how your customers will interact with it, and set aside time to really interact back with them. A passive social media strategy is a bad strategy because if you’re out there, people expect an immediate response, as too often in social media “real-time is not fast enough.”

What was your favorite moment(s) from Free State Social? Share with us!

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  • Sarah Evans

    Hi Sara. Thank you for posting your thoughts about the conference. #FSSocial was a great experience and it was a pleasure to meet so many wonderful people. I loved learning from the other speakers and attendees, as well. Good luck in all you do! Best, Sarah Evans

  • Sara Newkirk

    Sarah- thanks for the comment! We agree that it was a great experience and have really tried to implement many of the recommendations that were shared at the conference. One big change that we have put into place regarding our use of social media as a company, is using social media to share interesting and useful information with those that follow us, and trying to keep things more conversational. On a personal note, I’ve really enjoyed following you, and many others that I met at the conference on Twitter. Always a great way to get my brain going in the morning with my cup of coffee!

  • I had a great time at Free State Social! I learned a lot from Sara Evans and enjoyed Shawna’s presentation as well. Sometimes the gurus tend to get a little to philosophical for my taste. Chris Brogan says having a social media department is like having a phone department. Well there nothing I can do about that. I am a mere minion. Those things drive me nuts. But, overall fab time.Can’t wait for next year.

  • Sara Newkirk

    Annie- we agree that it was a great time! It was a great experience to get to meet/see people face-to-face that we often interact with online through social media. I agree with your recent post regarding lead generation for Ottawa University – it’s important to lay the groundwork and establish your brand in social media so you can build a following and a community that supports you… which will make lead generation easier in the future. The fact that you have a strategy for social media and are supporting it puts you steps ahead of many businesses/organizations. Best of luck in your lead generation efforts!