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Social Fresh Nashville

Posted by Katie Morse on January 14th, 2010

My head is still spinning from the most recent Social Fresh.

I was asked to come and moderate a panel about social media in the music industry, and had the great pleasure of asking Tessa Horhled, Ted Wright, Stephen Linn and Ben Bennett questions submitted by Social Fresh community members and Twitter, as well as a few of my own.

While moderating the panel was great, the highlight of the event for me was talking with fellow attendees and attending many of the other stellar sessions.

In no particular order, here are the things that stuck with me through my flight home and day back at the office:

  • Dan Zarrella Wow. If you aren’t paying attention to him, you should start.  He looks at social media from a scientific perspective, and his presentation left me with an urge to go back and look at our own metrics and historical data with a new eye.
  • The ROI of Community panelists (DJ Waldow, Lisa Hoffmann, Amber Naslund and Zena Weist) This panel was absolutely enlightening.  The panelists come from a variety of companies, including Blue Sky Factory, Duke Power, Radian6 and H&R Block. The audience wasn’t shy about asking hard-hitting questions, and the panelists responded candidly, with great insight about what the challenges and rewards are of developing a community.
  • Southwest Airlines Paula Berg (formerly of Southwest Airlines, now with Linhart PR) gave a great presentation to open up the day.  Southwest Airlines has really shown consumers that they care about them as people, not just wallets, over the last few years. It was refreshing to see how truthful this message was carried throughout the organization, and I learned a lot about the culture inside the Southwest organization. If possible, I respect them even more after hearing Paula speak, even though I raised my hand as one not in favor of their “open seating” policy.

Some sessions stick out in my mind as “I wish I had attended”. Jason Falls gave a much-tweeted about presentation, talking about moving the needle in social media. Geno Church closed out the day with a presentation referred to by attendees as “a work of art”, speaking about the work of Brains on Fire.

What was the biggest takeaway for me? The people.

Connecting in a community online, commenting on a blog, posting on a message board, exchanging messages on Twitter or Facebook are all great methods to keep up with people who may be in a distant location, but nothing beats sitting down and sharing a meal, or chatting over a cup (or three) of coffee.

If you haven’t been to Social Fresh, I highly urge you to take a look at the schedule of events of the rest of the year and go to an upcoming conference. We are happy to have been a part of two events so far, and are looking forward to being a part of Social Fresh Tampa as well.

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