Category Archives: Events

Events I’ve attended and are noteworthy

Digital Media Marketing Strategy and a Missed Opportunity

Nowadays, technology gives us lots of tools to communicate with our constituents.  Tools like email, social media, apps, the Web.  This week I attended a Bisnow Event where the room was full of associations who were looking for guidance on how they should be using digital media tools.  The event was called Digital Advocacy: Strategies for Associations (I couldn’t find anything on the Bisnow website for this event so I had to dig through my email to find this link – oops!).  There was a great lineup of very reputable speakers including Jason Oxman from CEA, Michael Turk from Craft Media Digital (my favorite of the bunch) and Barry Jackson from AARP to name a few.  There were also sponsors for this event including Arent Fox and Navigation Arts.  

When the panel was asked how the organizations around the room should start, they agreed that an articulation of goals was the all important first step.  It may take an expert to ground your goals in reality but nevertheless, defining goals is imperative. This goes a long way toward setting internal expectations, guiding creation of the digital media plan while teeing up measurements for success.

Different ideas were thrown around by the panel about the logical next step.  My experience dictates that the next step is to map out your content assets.  You’ll need to take inventory of ALL the assets available to you in order to execute a great digital media strategy.  After all, you can’t successfully participate in digital media without something important and useful to say.  What companies often don’t realize is that there are several things being documented by different departments within their organization that SHOULD become part of your content asset inventory.  Minor modifications to those assets might be necessary before they are ready for use in digital media, but they should be inventoried and built upon.  Examples might be:

1) Training documents
2) Employee/product/customer photos
3) Email newsletters
4) Events (take a note Bisnow!)
5) Social media commentary
6) PPT presentations
7) Positive email communication with customers
8) Customer feedback
9) Company conference materials
10) Shareholder communications
11) Web site content

Now comes the content mapping.  This step outlines how content can be “repurposed” an integrated into a digital media program.  For example training documents are initially created for training employees, but they can be repurposed as part of a customer education communication (e.g. Tip of the Week).

The final step is to decide upon the most appropriate channel of communication.  Is it email, text message,  Twitter, Facebook, Slideshare, Digg, your website, Search Engine Marketing?  Each channel has strengths and weaknesses and not all of them are appropriate for every business.  Here’s where it will become necessary to refer back to the goals you established in step #1. 

Now back to Bisnow’s opportunity to leverage the event.  Wouldn’t it make sense, given all the effort expended on bringing this event together, to leverage it beyond the moment in a more prominent way?  After all, a successful event took place at a great venue with reputable speakers and recognizable sponsors for the benefit of a roomful of attendees from interesting associations.  The fabulous email invitation that I received convincing me to attend in the first place should have a prominent position on their website with some additional info about attendees.  Sponsors deserve ongoing recognition of their contribution in bringing local companies out for this event.  Potential subscribers to the Bisnow email publications would have more reason to subscribe to Bisnow’s publications.  Event participants (especially those featured) would not only have a reference point for following up with event speakers but also be more likely to share/tweet/link to this event to their network. Include a link to future Bisnow events and you’ve got a viral marketing campaign!

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Filed under Digital Media, Events

Inspired by the ICRW

I recently attended the ICRW’s International Women’s Day event at the National Press Club.  There was a sold out crowd sipping wine and noshing while talking about the really interesting things attendees were doing to support women’s issues.   I met several really smart, devoted and funny people (shout out to you Nancy W. and Patricia D.!) who use events like this to network and be inspired because they are slowly changing the world.  I attended because I knew I would meet people outside my normal networking circles and I wanted a window into the non-profit space. 

Women Pay it Forward

I was impressed to learn that the gentleman sitting next to me was in town on business.  He chose to spend his evening in D.C. (and his own money) at this event because he thinks about equality with Mercer.  Admirable.  I’m not sure I’d spend my time in a new city at a business event but bully for him.

Much of the discussion seemed esoteric until former First Lady of England spoke.  Cherie Blair said that one of her biggest frustrations while her husband was in office was that governments are compartmentalized and lose a lot of economies when information sharing doesn’t happen.  Programs move forward when they can build on each other as opposed to being redundant.  Silos also stifle learning.  Despite all the admirable work being done by each of the people on the panel, my mind wrapped around Mrs. Blair’s comments.  Information sharing can be propelled with the appropriate digital media marketing programs. 

Now how to apply this idea to governments. 

If only there was a way to leverage the learnings from multiple agencies.  I know many people have tried to tackle this but it almost sounds like it should be one agency’s job to organize and disseminate information.  An agency in charge of cross-pollination.  This agency would need to employ a  combination of sophisticated software that allows thorough searchability, and a strategic plan that considers how information would be accessed by authorized users.  The key is to create a framework that allows information to be excerpted, subscribed and shared so that further learning and cross-pollination can be facilitated.  Considerations would be information architecture, tagging, permissions and the rules around sharing and dissemination of information.  A project such as this would only be successful it it could be dynamic and expandable. Facinating!

I realize government programs such as this are not typical (thus Mrs. Blair’s frustrations) but . . . I can dream. And I do live in Washington, D.C.  Hmmmmm . . .

More on this later.

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Filed under Events, Government, Women