Well I’m back home, it’s 3am and my flight was delayed yet again in Houston. This time for two hours as the flight computer was repaired. Folks got annoyed, some left, but I made it back safely.
The main purpose for my trip to Washington DC Alexandria was to speak at this business blogging panel. The duration of 45 minutes was far to short for the 5 panelists, I don’t feel we even scratched the surface. There was a lot of discussion of ROI and connecting with bloggers, so it was a very different feel from previous conferences where I was challenged on “what” and “why”. Seems like folks have evolved and now want to know “how”.
One of the great attendees lead us to the conversation of ‘pitching to bloggers’. Which is where most companies know, that the opinion of a trusted peer to a prospect is valued the highest. Here’s how I told the audience to pitch to bloggers…you don’t.
What you should do is: 1) Identify the bloggers in your community 2) Read their blogs, subscribe to them, and really read them 3) Leave comments on their blog, or link to them from your blog 4) build a real and human relationship with them, get to know them 5) treat them with the same types of importance as other forms of influencers (media, press, analyst) 6) Grant them exclusives, invite them over for lunch, get to know them. 7) Be human.
Here’s a secret: Some of the companies that I have written about feel like people I know, or people that have become my friend within the context of this social media world. I don’t feel like they are using me, pitching me, but rather that I’m part of their ecosystem. So, before you email me your pitch (I get many) consider the steps I provided above.
My esteemed panelists included:
David Doucette, from Fairmont Hotels Rick Short, from Indium Corporation Peter S. Mahoney, Nuance.) Grier Graham, our moderator from Techdirt. Lee Aase, from Mayo Clinic
I think much of the world is starting to get wind of social media, but they’re not aware of the many tools that are coming out, such as twitter, facebook, live streaming and whatever comes next. It’s hard to keep up, but if you subscribe to my blog, I’ll bring you with me.
Lee continues to do a great job live blogging his sessions (such as ours), he’s the type of guy conference organizers should invite to attend as media.
I met a lot of great folks, just a few pics: