The Blogs & Social Media Forum takes place on Wednesday 17 May at the Hilton London Metropole Hotel (£350). This is an event designed to bring social media closer to businesses. I have been working with VNU to make the conference a bit less formal and more involved for the delegates. It is still difficult as experimenting with formats is all very well but for the need to make it commercial viable interferes.
There will be no powerpoints (or very few, I hope), the sessions are short, focusing on case studies and the panels conversational rather a series of presentations. We are trying to get the speakers down from their ‘elevated position’ and the main afternoon session is ‘Open Space’ with the panelists and a few other speakers going into a huddle with the delegates.
I find that the most interesting conversations at conferences happen during the coffee breaks and the open space is an attempt to bring the coffee break style of interaction to the main auditorium. Lloyd Davis and Johnnie Moore are going to facilitate this session, as open doesn’t mean unstructured. It means that the structure is invisible and far more flexible as the power to determine the topics and lead the discussion falls on the audience. Lloyd and I went to check out the venue, Hilton Metropole today to see if we can arrange the rather formal settings into something a bit more relaxed. I am hoping that we can get the panelists and speakers away from tables, breaking down the division as far as possible. Whilst still fulfilling the purpose of the conference – inform, share knowledge, discuss and further understanding of social media in business [end of a serious business voice]. This is the official blurb:
Examining the impact of wikis, blogs & RSS, this one day forum will combine expert industry insight from leading thinkers in the field of social media technologies with real life case studies. The programme offers an unrivalled learning experience addressing the following challenges:
- Choosing the medium - wikis, blogs, RSS – where is the value?
- The risk and reward of social media
- How you can communicate and collaborate in your organisation
- Podcasting as a business tool
- Understanding social media’s ROI
- The future of social media and web 2.0 - where’s it all going?
The speakers will be a mixture of old and new, hoping to provide a balance between the bigger picture and the practical applications.
- Christopher Barger, Blogger-in-Chief, IBM
- JP Rangaswami, Global CIO, Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein
- Raymond C. Jordan, Vice President, Public Affairs & Corporate Communications, Johnson & Johnson
- Adriana Cronin Lukas, Partner, Big Blog Company
- Jeff Clavier, Managing Partner, SoftTech VC
- Euan Semple, Independent Consultant and ex-Head of Knowledge Management at the BBC
- Ben Hammersley, Journalist for British Press (The Times, The Guardian and The Observer), and the Author of Content Syndication with RSS
- Jaap Favier, Vice President, Research Director, Forrester Research
- Jackie Danicki, Founder, Engagement Alliance
- Jason Korman, CEO, Stormhoek Wine
- Alec Muffet, Principal Engineer, Sun Microsystems
- Lloyd Davis, Perfect Path Consulting, UK
- Johnnie Moore, Johnniemoore.com
- Loic Le Meur, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Six Apart, France
- Ruth Ward, Head of Knowledge Systems and Development, Allen & Overy
The full details of the programme are here. I look forward to seeing you there.