Plenty of people have been writing about ESM, probably better than I could. So I’ll just show you where you can get all that (done), and instead just give you my take on it.
I have to say, at first I was skeptical. (I’m like that.) When I realized that the majority of attendees were speakers or session leaders, I expected two days of navel-gazing and self-promotion.
And I’m not saying there wasn't any. But while the balance may not have been great financially for the conference, it ended up being phenomenal for me. I was surrounded by people who really knew their stuff – in many cases, who I’d read and known by reputation for years. It was great.
Especially since, as I mentioned, I’ve been thinking about how to translate all this cool talk into practicalities. It’s fun to Twitter back and forth in a conference room like passing notes in junior high, but how does my familiarity with that technology help me or my company or my clients?
If I were consulting on increasing software user numbers, or getting tech geeks to communicate more efficiently within a company, that might be a simpler path. Not easier work, but easier to see what to do.
To clarify, I’m not complaining. The exact opposite. Working in one of the most scrutinized industries with some of the world’s tightest federal and ethical regulations… it actually makes it that much more interesting.
I mean, it’s like sonnets. It’s hard enough to write poetry. But to get your point across in that restrictive structure is that much more of an undertaking.
To clarify that, nobody’s glorifying anything here. This ain't poetry. All I’m saying is, it's a challenge, and I like it that way. Will my clients – or my own company – embrace every social media concept right away? No. (Nor should they.) But it will eventually, when it’s right.
It just means a little creativity and a lot of stubbornness. (And I’m like that.)