Today will witness the 2ndSocial Tools Summit, a 2-day event which will be at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco. Available online through streaming video (see the end of this post for a special offer), you can also follow the hashtag #SocialTools15 today and tomorrow to glean insight into the knowledge that will be shared at the event over the next 48 hours.
This blog post is a preview of the keynote that I will be delivering at the event.
The Social Tools Summit is a unique social media conference in that it is designed to become a social media industry conference, the closest to a “Dreamforce” type of event that enterprise social media professionals can count on annually for unsurpassed education, networking and breakthroughs leading to workforce innovation vis a vis social media.
What exactly does this mean?
The Social Tools Summit was designed to bring together the key players in the social media industry ecosystem with the aim of fostering social media innovation, either through greater and more efficient enterprise use of social media or through the development and/or implementation of social media tools that can provide unsurpassed results to those using them.
I define the key players in the social media industry as follows:
Social Media Tools Vendors
If you’ve seen me speak recently, you’ll already know that I am passionate about systemizing your social media operations for maximum efficiency. As social media programs exponentially expand in terms of number of social media users reached as well as content published across a more diverse set of social networks and communities while trying to satisfy a growing number of social business objectives, there is a constant need to scale. The problem is there are only a limited ways of scaling a social media program: People, process, paid social, and tools.
Social media tools are the missing ingredient for many large companies who simply have not realized that they need a host of tools to get the (social media) job done. While this list is not a comprehensive one, the types of social media tools that enterprises of today need include:
- Compliance (depending on industry)
- Social Media Management
- Employee Advocacy
- Brand Advocacy
- Content Marketing
- Social Selling
- Influencer Marketing
- Social Customer Service
- Social Recruiting
- Engagement Marketing
- Paid Social Management
- Visual Social
Part of my job as co-founder of the Social Tools Summit is to reach out to companies developing tools that satisfy the above requirements, and I can tell you from firsthand experience that there are a growing number of social media tools companies that currently number in the hundreds that are driving tremendous innovation in the space, not just based in the United States and Canada but also a growing number of companies from various countries in Europe, India, and Southeast Asia.
In the lay of the land in social media, social media tools vendors have the broadest experience in helping many companies with their solutions and should be thought of as advisors, if not best friends for the solutions they provide!
Enterprise Social Media Executives and Managers
If social tools vendors have the broadest experience, those who manage large-scale enterprise social media over multiple business units, brands, or geographies have the deepest experience in social, The pain points – and budgets – of these executives and management are what drive social media at the largest brands as well as help fuel innovation in the social media tools space.
Simply put, in order to fuel social media innovation, you need both the tools and the enterprise social directors that are putting the tools to good use and investing in the industry.
Because of this relationship, we have designed the Social Tools Summit so that both of these critical parties sit together on our expert panels.
Corporate Social Media Practitioners
Those who manage programs see social media at a strategic level and also need to engage with internal executives to get buy-in for what they do. It takes many people to get the social media job done, however, and this is where the corporate social media practitioner, as well as those “doing” social representing agencies, come in: They bear the grunt work and end up being the heaviest user of social media tools. For this reason, it would be illogical to have an industry conference without their involvement.
The Social Tools Summit actually has a second panel for each session that is located on the opposite side of the moderator from where the experts representing tools vendors and social management are: We call them the Trender Panel. Their input is essential in any dialogue to make sure that any tool or strategic social initiative is grounded in the reality of those doing the actual work.
Independent Consultants, Subject Matter Experts, and Authors
Finally, there are a group of professionals who also have broad experience in helping many businesses with their social media in a different way than tools vendors do: They are the actual independent consultants and social media experts that have a wide variety of experience and expertise that can also add value to any conversation vis a vis social media for business.
The Social Tools Summit taps into the experiences of these individuals as both keynote speakers as well as moderatos. They add value to all of the conversations taking place at the event.
It is only through this unique combination of social media industry players that true social media innovation is born. I look forward to seeing the ideas that spring forth from the Social Tools Summit over the next two days!
You might not be able to hop over to the Social Tools Summit in San Francisco, but you can still catch the live stream video – which can be watched later on demand – and can do so at a 50% discount by going to http://socialtoolssummit.com and entering the code MSB50 on checkout.
What drives social media innovation at your business?