Social Media Weekend

Over the past two days I was fortunate enough to attend Sacramento's first Social Media Weekend to learn not just about Facebook and Twitter, but about blogging, selling online, building a brand, marketing and so much more. Speakers ranged from one of the best known "Mommy Bloggers" (Christine Young, founder and writer for FromDatesToDiapers.com) to Jessica Knows (a mom that just so happens to blog and is active in the PR community), to Bayside's Director of Communications and Technology, CJ Alvarado, to the brains behind the event, SacTweetUps and so much more, Sacramento Marketing Labs’ Alejandro Reyes.

What did I learn?
- I learned that a lot of us really have no clue what we're doing, but we love what we're doing and will keep learning more and always try to do it better.
- "Social Media," blogs, Twitter, Facebook and so many other applications are still new and everyone is working to figure out how to use them to benefit themselves, their brands and their companies.
- Companies are learning that they no longer have the luxury of 24+ hours to respond to a critic, but instead must do so within minutes to avoid a crisis spinning out of control. Individuals can be connected to long lost friends or be connected to new friends that live next door or half way around the world. Both must figure out what to do with their connections, friends and fans in order to continue to help each other, provide the information needed to make wise decisions about everything from a major purchase to where the best place is the eat dinner in Midtown.
- For more insights on Social Media Weekend click here to search Twitter and the event's hash tag #socialmediaweekend.

Coming from a background of news and PR it is also very interesting to me how the news is changing. Within minutes of this week's massacre at Fort Hood, news agencies and individuals were disseminating information in 140 characters or less, even putting “Twitter Lists” to their first real test. How did I find out about the unfolding events? Through Twitter on my Blackberry while walking around Downtown Sacramento. How did I find out about Balloon Boy while painting my brother's house in Mountain View, through Twitter on my Blackberry. Why was I quoted in the Sacramento Bee for buying my house in Roseville ... because the writer saw my Facebook posts. Yes, although I try to read the newspaper online and watch the news at least once a day, I do get a lot of my news through Twitter as it is happening or minutes later, I no longer have to wait hours between newscasts or until the next morning to read it in the newspaper.

Where is our world headed? Do we all have social A.D.D.? Is Facebook a fad, like the pet rock? Will we all be looking down at our phones or the screens on our laptops 24/7 in the coming years? Maybe, but if the SacTweetUps and other events I have attended by searching subjects on MeetUp.com are any indication, I think we will be using social media to connect with new friends that share common interests to meet in person, develop businesses and follow our passions. What are you thoughts? The next Social Media Weekend will be in the Spring of 2010, as dates are announced I will keep you informed. Also, Alejandro Reyes (aka Successfool) will be launching a new Web site/blog on Monday, November 16, 2009, so remember to go to http://www.getinternetfamous.com/ and support him and see what "Getting Internet Famous" is really all about.

PS ... I still need a job, blogging and mountain biking are fun, but jobs pay for the fun (and the mortgage), if you know of any opportunities in PR, marketing, event planning, using social media or similar please contact me at mrandrewbradley@gmail.com or @mrandrewbradley on Twitter.

Comments

Mark Bean said…
Glad you enjoyed your weekend.
Nice post.

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