Two editions ago, I wrote about new ideas for networking, and it generated some of the most interesting responses yet. Here is a smattering.
I heard from Robin Gelfenbien, who I met at a Social Media Week event years ago (specifically, at the Suxorz), and she reminded me of her creative approach to storytelling with the Yum’s the Word Show. Check out her next one October 11.
Lizzie Serber, who I knew from her time at iMedia and is now with MightyHive (they’re hiring a ton globally – see below in the job listings), shared a 2015 post she wrote that offered tips for networking newbies. One creative recommendation for event organizers is to partner with non-profits and have conference attendees offer their services to a cause – as she did when having attendees of events build hygiene kits for homeless shelters.
Another reader, Uriah, brought up the idea of digital or virtual events, something that had generated interest in the past. Around 10-15 years ago, there was a lot of activity there; I used to speak at eComXpo and still have my 500MB talks saved with the long PowerPoint voiceovers. Are there opportunities to bring together people who can’t or wouldn’t travel? Can it be done well in a way that’s different from the ad hoc nature of online communities, or the broadcast nature of webinars? Virtual reality isn’t the solution (yet), but perhaps there are some good lower-tech ideas.
Then there was Jeremy, who described an agency’s conference: “They had a thematic topic and then asked people in the room to volunteer problems/challenges they had in that theme. They quickly selected eight or so, and then asked everyone else to join one of the groups who then went off to brainstorm in a freewheeling way how to solve that problem. Lastly, they had everyone come back together and share a summary of the things that resonated most with the person whose problem was being discussed.” He also mentioned another event with speed-dating sessions between corporate marketers and vendors, where the buy-side attendees got to line up to talk to the vendors who were most interesting.
There are so many great ways to change up the typical flow of conferences and networking, and I’m looking forward to spending more time exploring how to build on all these great ideas and apply them. Any other thoughts on remaking events? And what are you making of yourself?
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YOU KNOW, NOT FOR KIDS
I let my child watch a bit of YouTube when she turned two, and it was so terrible that I switched to YouTube Kids – but even that was so bad that I blocked both. Now Congress is taking an interest in how YouTube violates privacy laws that protect children. YouTube’s defense: “YouTube has said its practices are in line with Coppa, which requires companies to obtain explicit, verifiable permission from parents before collecting personal information from children under 13 or targeting them with ads tied to their online behavior.” This is laughable; I know I never explicitly gave such permission. And just search for “finger family” (here’s one with 930 million views) or “Johnny Johnny” (1.5 billion views) to see tons of the most popular videos on YouTube that are clearly targeting kids – and maybe a few stoners.
How many Amendments do you know the gist of? Do you even know we have 27 of them? Well, WNYC Studios and the National Constitution Center invited accomplished musical artists to each create a song about a certain amendment, and it’s a hell of a playlist. I love the story about how the 27th Amendment was ratified – 200 years after it was proposed. It’s also a great reminder for marketers that formats can change and adapt. Your idea may be originally best written on parchment, but are there new ways to bring it to life for different audiences? Thanks to Randall for sharing this in Slack.
https://project.wnyc.org/themostperfectalbum/iOS 12’S GREATEST HITS
I thought I read everything I needed to about iOS 12 and still missed a few features. David Pogue breaks down all the best ones – such as practical uses for augmented reality (finally!), and smart ways to use Apple’s new Shortcuts.
SHOULD YOU UPGRADE TO THE XS?
Speaking of which, I wasn’t going to upgrade to the Xs, even though I joined the iPhone upgrade program. Then late one night, I started researching if the Xs camera is any better. The evil Vlad Savov posted the best review I saw, comparing photos from the X and Xs, and I ordered the Xs Max upgrade right then. Pretty much all I care about on my phone now is the camera, which may well get me to switch to a Pixel sometime (though I was burned by Android years ago – well, not literally). Don’t read this article if you want to stay happy with your current handset.
GETTING A RHIZA OUT OF DATA
I wrote my first story for MediaVillage, and it was published this week. I interviewed Nielsen’s Ronjan Sikdar on how they’re pulling together disparate data sights with Rhiza to uncover new insights.