The Influence Virus: Ongoing Experiments in Social Media

Last night I had the amazing opportunity to see a great, diverse panel of active and successful participants in the social media community! The event was hosted by Fast Company.

The panel featured:

Jill Fletcher, Social Media Manager, VIRGIN AMERICA
Jason Harris, President/Executive Producer,
Jonah Peretti, Co-Founder,
Gary Vaynerchuk, Founder,

This talk was inspired by Fast Company’s recent article and experiment: The Influence Project. Their goal? To find the most influential people in social media.

…The social-media economy is thriving, thanks to people like iJustine, with passionate, committed, and trusting audiences. There has long been debate about what, precisely, defines influence. Dale Carnegie, author of How to Win Friends and Influence People, described it as the ability to arouse enthusiasm in others to change their behavior…

My favorite takeaways:

  • “If content is king, context is about to be God” – Gary Vaynerchuk. Where and when you post your content is extremely important in addition to what the actual content is that you’re posting.
  • There’s no focus groups anymore, it’s all out there in public. It’s all at your finger tips, the ability to search twitter, facebook, and youtube to find out what people think. Consumers are already talking about your product so get out there and find out what they are saying and start a dialogue!
  • Need goals? Make them about how much you experiment. I was able to ask the panel how they come up with goals in a time where everything is so new. What could you possibly be measuring against? Especially when maybe, if you’re good…no one has done what you’re doing. Jill Fletcher advised that you make your goalsĀ  about experimenting and trying new things. This was probably the best thing I heard all night! I have to write my own goals for HR really soon. So now I’m thinking things like…“try four location based marketing promotions” and “attempt three creative partnerships with blogs for each book on my grid.”

OH. YES. This is exciting!

Also, another exciting event is happening on November 9th at the Columbia School of Journalism. It’s optional for my social media class, and it’s actually free and open to the public!

PANEL/WEBCAST: Hearst “Changing Media Landscape, 2010″ Panel

HILDA GARCIA, VP, multiplatform news and information of Impremedia
DAVID KARP, founder, Tumblr, a leading microblogging site
MARK LUCKIE, national innovations editor, Washington Post
ADAM OSTROW, editor-in-chief, Mashable
BETTY WONG, global managing editor, Reuters
MODERATOR: Prof. Sree Sreenivasan, Columbia J-school’s Dean of Student Affairs
Ballin! New York City is so great. You really can’t complain about when all these events with super inspiring people are almost always free and open to anyone…with free food and drinks to boot!

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