Social Conversations Take Shape at Podcamp Boston

Podcamp 3 BostonI’m a believer that innovation is driven by communities. The friendships we make with smart creative people can do more to drive our success in business and life than any new technology or tactic. Wow, this is such a theme in my life, and I bet yours too.

Read about it as it happens
Podcamp BostonSo, I’m blogging live from this great “learn-in” about social media (blogs, mobile net, social networks, twitter, virtual worlds, etc). I’m lucky to be part of this this amazing community of about 2,000 grassroots media producers.

As I look down my aisle, three people are blogging, two have twitter going, several are filming, all as four social PR guys discuss their work. Over the next two days, I’ll continue to add to this post — so if you’re interested in this, come back, I’ll try to give you a feeling of what’s happening here.

 This is an event about discussionIts about people
Who you meet may be more powerful than what you learn. Podcamp starts with that premise. In the first hour I’ve visited with a Unitarian Universalist minister from New Bedford who has media and marketing chops. I met journalist interested in community-funded reporting, a mediator with thoughts on mid-life marriage, and Guido Stein, who hosts a knitting podcast – and who used that craft as a gateway for talking about the craft of social media.

Its about psychology
Am I crazy? Today’s agenda has topics such as Strategies for Better Podcast Interviews, or How to Build and Audience. And then there’s me, talking about how a cognitive theory called Lay Epistomology can be used to understand how people make beliefs, and then to build communications around those factors.

Stever RobbinsFor fortunate reasons I can’t explain, Stever Robbins, host of The Get-It-Done Guy, shared a few semi-psychological new media tactics right out of the box. He proposed that humans have big brains in order to participate in social interactions. Gossip is something we’re wired to do.

He also made an interesting point about frequency and duration of contact in forming friendships. For instance, people will remember you more and better with shorter more frequent positive encounters, than fewer large one. I use corporate newsletters with photos of account staff to provide quick more frequent, positive virtual contacts from our team. The challenge is finding ways to make conversations personal.

Small World
John WallJohn Wall hosts a blog about frontline marketing, and does interactive marketing for one of my old clients, Accurev.  He discussed using interactive to optimize the sales cycle, that is, to work on the small later end of the sales funnel, rather than the early wider part. 

We also discussed making multiple uses of the same content across channels. The white paper you write today, can also be transformed in to a blog entry, a podcast interview, or an event. This multiple use provides both choice and the opportunity for reinforcement between different media. Since search engines can’t get in to podcasts, giving them textual life opens them up to the world of SEO.

New Life for PDF’s
Would you like to get better tracking on your whitepaper uses.  Make sure they include links, and you can track the domains from which they eminate.  Adobe PDFs are now better equipped to carry Flash, which can result in internet calls and potentially still more tracking.

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