“This is not just a conference, it is an “experience” advertised What’s Next DC in reference to their all-day event on Monday, January 24, 2011. I have to admit I had high expectations of this “experience”. Monday was one of the coldest days of the year and I had to transfer on the Metro subway twice to get to the Georgetown University Marvin Center in Northwest DC. Needless to say, I was none too happy. I don’t like the cold, I don’t like getting anywhere at 8 o’clock in the morning, but I DID like What’s Next DC. Hosted by the Green Buzz Agency, What’s Next DC aimed to give us a unique conference experience while sharing some of the most innovative trends in Marketing, Public Relations, Advertising, and Communications. Tod Plotkin, Principal at Green Buzz Agency talked to me about how What’s Next DC came about.
Shonali Burke, Principle, Shonali Burke Consulting, was by far one of my favorite speakers. She not only talked to us about how we can redefine Public Relations in the 21st Century, but she included shoes in her presentation. What woman doesn’t love a good shoe story? She is smart and witty and shared with us that “true PR” is about building relationships. She also included some insights on how digital and social technologies are changing the game. I spoke to her about the new PR and the one thing she wanted us all to get from her presentation.
My favorite quote of the day came from KaBOOM!, CEO & Co-Founder Darrell Hammond when he said, “if you want to be remarkable, do remarkable things”… duly noted and added to my “things to do” list for 2011! The speaker who made me shout “hurrah” was Reggie Bradford, CEO & founder of Virtue Inc. Bradford spoke about social media best practices for communicators using Facebook. Don’t tell my Twitter family, but Facebook, by far, is my most useful social media marketing tool. I turn to Twitter for news and fast information sharing but it’s on Facebook that I grow communities and do outreach projects for my client. I use Facebook personally and professionally to promote my own endeavors and that of my clients, AmeriCorps VISTA and AmeriCorps VISTA Alumni. Branford’s pearl of wisdom was “being on Facebook is not about followers but rather best practices and being able to measure success.” Indeed it is.
Not so much a conference but more like a round of quick-fire presentations with networking mixers thrown in throughout day, What’s Next DC offered just the right amount of information to get us interested in the topic but not so much overkill that it made us want to fall asleep or walk away early. Oh, and if you did somehow manage to get bored or if you simply wanted to spend a little more time with a presenter, there was an opportunity to join them in-the-round for a small group discussion. Hats off and a big high five to Green Buzz Agency for a job well done and giving us case studies, strategies and personalized solutions to our most challenging issues regarding “digital marketing in a networked world”. I forget which presenter used that phrase but he is the same one who said we should never use the words “social media” or “campaign” anymore. Of course, in my day job I’m a Social Media Specialist for Campaign Consultation, Inc. I guess I’m going to have to get new business cards very soon!
With the photographer of the day!
Shonali sharing her insights during her presentation
BLOG PDATE: Thanks to Chirpstory.com I read the tweets from #WhatsNextDC and located the unamed presenter who wants us to take “social media” and “campaign” out of our vocabulary. It was Matt Goddard of @r2integrated. You can find his What’s Next DC presentation here.
#WhatsNextDC tweets from Chiprstory.com