Another interesting session I went to last week at IAEE's Expo! Expo! was on social networking. Now, I've been going to these sessions for a few years at this point, and how much more is there to say? But it was packed, as were other related sessions held earlier in the week (or so I heard). Obviously, this is still something people want to know more about; even the basics on blogging still has an audience, much to my surprise.
Anyway, in addition to talking about things like how to use RSS feeds to broadcast show announcements and getting speakers to blog about their sessions, the presenters (Rick Calvert, CEM, CEO and co-founder of BlogWorld and New Media Expo; Jim Turner, chief managing partner of One By One Media; and Chris Brogan, president, New Marketing Labs) got into how trade show organizers can use photo-sharing application Flickr, "micro-blogging" tool Twitter, and social networking sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, etc., etc. They also went into BlogTalkRadio, which allows anyone with a phone to host their own radio show for free (yes, I've been meaning to play with this for quite awhile now. Anyone want to volunteer to be my first guest??).
To get people using YouTube for your event, they had this great idea: Offer a sponsor the opportunity to buy up a bunch of cheap flip phones to hand out from their booth or wherever, let people record the show and upload their home movies to YouTube. "Costs less than a lanyard sponsor would. Just saying..." said Chris Brogan.
(Aside: All three of the presenters were really, really good. They kept it very conversational and fun, and the vibe in the room was energized. Not bad for just before lunch!)
As for Twitter, they advised that you stick with it for a little while, because it will seem totally moronic at first (I'm still in that phase, myself, but can sort of see the benefit if you have a lot of time to devote to it). It's mostly useful for building relationships and listening in on conversations your audience is having. Especially useful is search.twitter.com, which you can use to find out more about what people you care about are talking about.
Another tip was to use ping.fm to update all your various social media sites in one fell swoop, though they added that they'd use it sparingly, because each social media site and group should be addressed as the unique and special folks they are, not just broadcast to.
For those who are starting to get a lot of bloggers asking for press credentials to attend your show (especially those wanting free press passes), some ways to tell who's legit and who's not are to look them up on Technorati, do a Google blog search, or check them out on compete.com.