The Key Ingredient for Social Media Success: Social Slam Recap

On Wednesday, I was fortunate to attend
 Social Slam – an amazing social media conference in Knoxville.

I was planning to write a post capturing highlights from the awesome sessions and share nuggets from my pages of notes. But instead, I want to talk about something a little different.

Relationships.

Yes, the sessions were fantastic. Yes, the speakers were great. Yes, I learned a great deal from some really smart people.

However, the real takeaway for me was the ability to connect with people. I had the opportunity to meet people “in real life” and deepen relationships with people I’ve interacted with online (Arminda Lindsay, Amy Howell, Alys Drake, Jenn Whinnem, Erica Allison, Jeremy Victor, Anne Gallaher and Jon Moss, just to name a few).

And, I was blessed to meet some new folks too, such as Jayme Soulati, Tom Webster, Karen Rittenhouse and several others.

I also was blown away by the kindness and generosity of the speakers and panelists.

Jay Baer & Laura Click

I spent some time talking with Jay Baer, keynote speaker and author of The Now Revolution,
 and found him to be kind, down-to-earth, and incredibly engaging.

The thing that impressed me most about Jay is that he was interested in what I had to say and thanked me on Twitter for my support. He made me feel special.
 Isn’t that what everyone wants?

Trey Pennington outlined this in his opening keynote address. He talked about how we all want to be heard, understood and for our lives to count.

It’s not about you

It’s pretty simple stuff, really. However, so often people and businesses forget this important fact. Instead, we make it all about ourselves.

We peddle our wares and engage in non-stop selling.

We focus on our own needs and desire for success.

We worry about what everyone thinks of us to fuel our selfish egos.

But if you want to be successful in business, make it be about them. Not you.

Focus on solving other people’s problems. Provide answers to their questions. Offer unique and effective solutions to make their lives better.

If you can alleviate someone’s pain or make someone’s life a little bit easier, your business will be successful.

Yes, social media matters. But at the end of the day, it’s just a bunch of tools. As Jay said during his talk, “social media is not a unicorn, it’s a horse.”

The tools are utterly meaningless without the right business mindset. Be helpful. Be generous. Be appreciative when you get praise and be apologetic when you screw up.

People want to do business with those that really care about them and make them feel special. If you do that, then there will be no stopping you, regardless of which tools you use.

What do you think? What was your biggest takeaway from Social Slam?

P.S. Huge kudos to Mark Schaefer for being the driving force behind this event. Also, the folks at Pxyl and the Social Media Club of Knoxville certainly deserve a lot of praise for making Social Slam a success!

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Laura Click

Laura Click

Laura Click is brand strategist, speaker, podcaster and the founder of Blue Kite. Learn more about Laura and her work at Blue Kite.

33 replies on “The Key Ingredient for Social Media Success: Social Slam Recap”

Me standing up applauding! Well written, Laura. You’re right, the biggest take away from this awesome event was the value of relationships. I talk about social capital a lot with my clients and online; I feel like mine just went up 10 fold with this one event. Social Media is a tool that we can use in our business (my blog post today says that as well), but at the end of the day, it’s the value of the relationships, on and off line, that matter! Glad that you and I now have both! Thanks, Laura for the shout out!

Thanks for the kind words, Erica. Meeting you was a fantastic example of what can come out of an event like this and from social media in general. You just can’t put a price tag on that. Relationships are what matter most – always has been, always will be. So glad to call you a friend!

Thanks, Laura, and the pleasure is/was all mine! I’m also very impressed you have all these new images for your Twitterati Wall; you take good photo, Girl! Now, about that avatar…ahem, just kidding; am I really? Ask Erica, she’s just below me.

But seriously, I’m gonna try (to be serious), the pleasure IS mine to have met you and thanks to @JennWhinnem for making that happen b/c the room was a sea of technology. I did pick out your tweets from that tsunami stream, though. Knew it was fate we’d connect.

LOL! Yes, that darn avatar. What am I going to do about that? I guess it’s proof you always need an objective opinion. The result is clear – I need a new one! 🙂

And yes, in seriousness, it was so great to meet. A huge thanks for Jenn Whinnem for ushering me over to meet you. More proof of the power of connections, relationships and social media. I look forward to keeping in touch. Have I mentioned that you totally rock?!?

Thank you, Laura. Love that we all attended and the high fives are still flying.

As for your avatar, go to Gravatar.com and replace; also just take another cutie photo (like the one with Jay Baer above) and crop for your new Twitter. Easy peazie lemon squeezie.

Thank you, Laura. Love that we all attended and the high fives are still flying.

As for your avatar, go to Gravatar.com and replace; also just take another cutie photo (like the one with Jay Baer above) and crop for your new Twitter. Easy peazie lemon squeezie.

No worries. I’ll get it done. It’s just all about finding the right photo. Time to dig through the archives (or take a new one) Shall I put you in charge of the voting process?!? 😉

I would like to second Jayme’s Survey Monkey suggestion. Anything with “monkey” in its title gets an automatic credibility point in my book.

What a wonderful summation of our collective experience at Social Slam 2011. Thank you for so beautifully stating the obvious we should all be doing in our businesses, and lives, as well. It was absolutely my pleasure to get to know you personally, and I am looking forward to many more interactions with you.

Thanks, Arminda. I’m SO glad I got to sit by you at the event. It made it so much more fun that way! I’m so glad we got to hang out. I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship! 🙂

I was so excited to meet you Laura! You’re lucky you got some great photos – I kept forgetting to take them!

THANK YOU for emphasizing how it’s “not about you.” I’ve been hearing this message since I got on board with social media in 2009 and it seems that will bear repeating until the end of technology. How often does someone get into social media for business and have to learn this lesson?

Likewise, Jenn. I LOVE chatting with you. I just hate we didn’t have more time. And why didn’t we get a picture together?! So bummed about that.

I’m glad you like the post. I know it’s been said a million times, but still so many miss this important point. Hopefully, we call continue to spread the word.

Beautifully said! How can we constantly miss the obvious – It’s about them! “They” want the attention, the feedback, the praise – the same things all of us are longing for. Give these simple items to your clients and they will follow you forever.

Thanks for the wonderful summary and I’m so glad we connected at SoSlam. I’d follow you anywhere!

Beautifully said! How can we constantly miss the obvious – It’s about them! “They” want the attention, the feedback, the praise – the same things all of us are longing for. Give these simple items to your clients and they will follow you forever.

Thanks for the wonderful summary and I’m so glad we connected at SoSlam. I’d follow you anywhere!

I think the easiest stuff is sometimes the hardest to miss. We think we need magic beans or to try the next big thing to be successful. It’s all about the basics, which isn’t very sexy, is it?

Thanks for the kind words, Karen. It was so fun sitting next to you and Arminda all day!!! 🙂

It was a pleasure meeting you at SoSlam. Your post scored a definite bullseye. SoSlam reinforced to me that social media wasn’t just a set of new tools for business, but rather an evolution in how we relate with one another for our collective benefit. My second take away is that I really want an iPad2. Cheers.

I didn’t get to meet you at SoSlam but was impressed with willingness of the panelist/speakers to roll up their sleeves and dug into the dirt of social media so to speak. I agree with Erica Allison…my social capital has skyrocketed as a result of this event. Jay Baer, Mark Schaefer, Amy Howell….all wonderful people in addition to their powerful knowledge!

Hi Ed – Thanks for weighing in. I agree – the beauty of the event was that there were so many great folks who were generous with their time. I hate that we didn’t get a chance to meet. Give me a shout on Twitter (@lauraclick) and let’s connect that way, okay?

Hurray for the home team from Tennessee : )

Thanks for the shout-out and attending. It was an amazing and energizing event but I do regret being so occupied that I had little time to network. That will have to change next year, and there WILL be a next year, April 27, 2012.

Thanks for the great post, Laura!

Yes, for those that didn’t already know, Tennessee is pretty darn awesome! Thanks for showcasing that fact and putting on a world-class event. I really enjoyed it and it sounds like a lot of folks did. Great work, Mark. You should feel great about how it all turned out.

Looking forward to next year!

Laura, Thanks for the post from those of us who were’t able to make it! It’s so easy to forget what the foundation is that we as marketers spend so much time building. I know I get caught up thinking that if the key ingredient is so simple it must not be right and so much time is wasted on unnecessary things. We need reminders like this!

Sure thing, Joel! Happy to share.

You’re right – we marketers often get caught up in keeping up with the “shiny things” that we sometimes forget that the basics are what matter most. The basics never change, only the tools.

And next year, I’ll drag you along to this!

I keep reading about these great events, and I never seem to be able to join some of them. We have quite a lot of events here in Serbia, but never seem to have them in that volume.

I invest a lot of my energy and hopefully, I’ll be able to get on some of those great conferences…

Amazing write-up! This could aid plenty of people find out more about this particular issue. Are you keen to integrate video clips coupled with these? It would absolutely help out. Your conclusion was spot on and thanks to you; I probably won’t have to describe everything to my pals. I can simply direct them here!

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