Day 2 is off to a great start! The morning keynote by Charles Buchwalter of Nielsen Netratings was fabulous. Rather than hit us over the head with numbers, figures, graphs and charts, he stated the case for engagement and passion. His guidelines for advertisers/marketers are key:
1) Align content with passions (Blogs?)
2) Enable kindred spirit discovery (Viral?)
3) Build a better mousetrap (Try to be the leader/best in category?)
All great stuff and all on CD after the presentation. I’ve gotta go home and digest this. I may ask for ALL the presentations to be made available to attendees, which would be awesome.
First Session: Going Mobile – Is This What’s Next? The answer from the panelists was a resounding “YES!” Great presentations by Sprint, P&G and Weather Channel. I got 3 amazing, doable SMS/Short Code ideas in 50 short minutes. I only hope we’re flexible/agile enough to make them happen. I left there feeling like we could really fulfill on the brand promise and the Very Funny aspect of our shows with only minimal text messages. It was a rush to hear such passion about wireless and it was contagious.
Second Session: To Blog or not To Blog. That is no question. The panelists all agreed that transparent, corporate blogging was a slam dunk. Steve Rubel, Sean from Weblogs, Inc., Pete Blackshaw of Intelliseek (Blogpulse) and Adrian Quintanilla of SBC (ProjectDU) were all in agreement. This is an amazing new medium for empowering customers, engaging in real-time conversations and humanizing your brand.
Steve was full of some great zingers and one-liners. A few of my faves that are too good not to blog:
“The Cluetrain Manifesto!”
“Message boards are blogs with their knuckles on the ground!”
“Blog to a higher calling!”
Steve actually speaks with exclamation points. He’s very opinionated, vocal and animated and also spot on in his analyses.
The session covered all the major blog bases – how much control you have over the conversation, should you advertise on blogs, should your brand be blogging – and really educated the people in attendance, who were somewhat at the “Blogs 101″ phase. For my part, I wore my “I’m blogging this.” t-shirt under my button-down and shook Steve’s hand with fanboy-like glee that I was meeting a blogging A-lister. I also bent Sean’s ear about Engadget and TV Squad and talked about potentially working with Weblogs, Inc. in the future.
Overall, a wonderful morning. I’m almost sad that I’ll have to rush to LaGuardia tonight directly after the show. But I love Jenn and RaeRae too much to stay gone for too long. A couple more hours and I’ll be home -s afe and happy – with my two best girls.