Moving the Virtual Relationships to the Physical Reality

Someone asked the other day … are you always on Twitter?  Hmmm … yes, I guess I’m on Twitter quite a bit.  Twitter allows me to interact with so many friends/followers in different ways.  Being on Twitter has taught me how to move my new friendships up the Twitter Relationship Stairway.  In keeping with the idea of moving up the stairs, I wanted to share with my community an opportunity to take our relationships a step further.  Being on Twitter is an excellent way to listen, learn, participate, make friends, bond and share incredible insight. And, as I review my calendar in the upcoming months, one more excellent way to move up the Twitter stairway is to meet my New York City friends/followers in person.

Here’s the opportunity: I’m going to be at two conferences in New York City, one in May and the other June.  Both are very different opportunities with friends.  The first is PRSA’s Digital Impact Conference on May 6th and then the PRSA T3 Conference on June 11th.  Here’s why each conference has the potential for a unique experience with my friends, and an opportunity to move up the Twitter stairway.

Digital Impact:  I’ll be at Digital Impact presenting on the topic “How to Create a Social Media Plan.”  My mind will be focused on helping people to develop strategy before tactics, and even how to “fix” what you’ve done before you take a new approach with different programs moving forward.  I’ll also discuss developing business goals and objectives, research initiatives, messaging and content creation, distribution channels, conversation monitoring and performance measures.  Here’s the opportunity, I’m at the conference to help people.  I remember when I was at the PRIA conference in Australia. After my keynote session I sat at the book signing table, but it was so much more than just signing books. I talked to each and every person who stopped by to visit with me.  It was an incredible experience.  Not only did I make new friends, but also was able to answer questions, offer insight on their projects and really get to know people.  Can this be done on Twitter?  Yes and no… yes until the conversations become in-depth and then you must move them into another form of communication beyond 140 characters.  In person, face-to-face is the best, when you’re able to shake hands and feel like you’ve made a great connection.

PRSA T3 Conference:  This is a unique opportunity for me. I’m the co-chair of the conference along with Rich Teplitsky and will devote my day to T3, and all of the conference attendees.  I can’t remember the last time I was at a conference for the all of the sessions, without running out the door to go to another event or leaving early to travel or get back to my office. It’s a fantastic opportunity for me to meet people, network and move relationships a step further. T3 will allow me to practice what I preach.

I’m also very excited to see @PRsarahevens and to hear her keynote presentation.  I participate frequently on #journchat, but it’s a different experience than hearing Sarah discuss what’s next in PR, strategy and technology and to engage with her in person.  I’m also going to meet Christine Perkett (@missusP) for the first time in person. She was one of our special guests for a #PRstudchat session, and of course, she was wonderful.  I’m a huge fan of Christine and looking forward to learning a great deal from her session, “Driving your Online Footprint: PR Experts as Influencers.”  Jacob Morgan (@jacobm) is another person I’m really looking forward to meeting for the first time. I read Jacob’s book, TwittFaced, and have been recommending the book ever since. It’s about time that we finally meet in person!  And, then there’s Justin Levy (@justinlevy), Director of Business Development, Corporate Strategy & Client Services at Facebook Marketing: Designing your Next Marketing Campaign.”  I’m looking forward to seeing Justin again and reading and reviewing his book on my blog. Of course, I could go down the list of all of the other speakers and people that I know who want to attend the conference, but then this blog post would be too long!

So, now I need to ask you a question … how are you moving up the Twitter Staircase and are you taking your relationships to the next level? And, if you are in NYC, is there an opportunity for us to meet at either Digital Impact or the T3 Conference.  I hope so, because meeting in person is the best way to take a relationship to the next level.  Hope to see you over the next couple of months.