Posts Tagged ‘Beyond Borders’

As I wind down from the American Marketing Association Beyond Borders Summit, I wanted to let you know what all occurred.

I was lucky enough to have the chance to speak to a wonderful group of marketers, advertisers, researchers, communicators and more!  The turnout for our Social Media related to marketing was amazing!  We had a full room with some folks waiting in the doorway!  So, thanks to everyone that was able to make it out and make this such a success.  There were tons of great questions and feedback.  The DFW AMA team was such a pleasure to work with and their excitement and eagerness to grow and enhance makes their organization a great opportunity for both the young professional or soon to be college grad, and the seasoned pro!

The best part about the summit was the opportunity to meet so many tremendous people.  Having the chance to sit down and speak with great people like  Rhonda Shasteen from Mary Kay,  Xiaoyan from GfK Roper, and JoAnne Crist from Neiman Marcus was amazing.  Another great thing about the summit was running into other young successful professionals like Michelle Williams, Wes Bates and Landon Sloan.  Their dedication and passion for making a difference is definitely inspiring and encourages me to keep pressing forward to set new standards.

If you missed the Summit and are interested in seeing what AMA is all about, you’re in luck!

The DFW AMA Market Research SIG is meeting on May 22!  Paul Maynard from Zachry Associates is hosting the meeting and it will be a great opportunity for young professional and students to meet and talk with seasoned industry pros and hopefully everyone will learn something new!  I am honored with the opportunity to speak to the group about market research and how social media and the web2.0 world can be applied.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions and I will post more info about the meeting as soon as I receive the specifics!


Today Facebook reaches 200 million members…impressive!

Think about the value of 200 million to your brand…even more impressive.  Though you may be initially enamored with the pure number, each of these members represents more than just a marketing target and a set of eyes.  As marketers, researchers, communicators it’s important we get past the sure ambiance of the social media craze.  When you start looking at social media and its massiveness in terms of quantitative analysis, you loose the very essence of what social media is all about and where the TRUE value comes from.

Many times as I am talking to companies and c-level execs about social media I am first tasked with changing a mindset.  A mindset that for years has been focused on the value of numbers and “exposure.”

Step 1 – Change the “exposure” thought process of sending 1,000 messages that are then noticed by 100 and cause action in 10.

Step 2 – Ingrain the “relationship” model of creating 10 strong relationships and connections which then translate into 100 and on to 1,000.

Step 3 – Get past “twitter is cool, and make a FB page” – companies want and deserve more than that and need to be taught application and utilization based tools

Step 4 – Overcome the shock factor and urge to control – many teams once started become overwhelmed with the mass of information available at their fingertips and have the urge to control any perceived “fallacies or falsehoods” – Are they accurate and true? If so, change your practices.

Step 5 – Incorporate all of your channels and messages into the culture of the company and “live” your words like Zappos and SWA. Enhance  your relationships as they are the TRUE value from the millions of potential.

Step 6 – Fight the “dead zone” – DO NOT stop!  Push forward and maintain your early momentum

Of course along the way are different subtle points of emphasis and different things each company needs to incorporate differently, but time after time I work on implementing the same beginning process for those just starting.  For those who I work with that understand the basics, it becomes a question of “how do we enhance your current relationships” and how can I continue to stand out, make a difference as well as monitor the effects of our actions.  It’s hard to explain APIs to those who are still learning to RT.  But, once past the adolescent stages – your own creativity is the only limit!  This is when it becomes really FUN!  Having the opportunity to help companies stand out from their competitors and really harness the power.

200 million is astonishing and even more so is the quickness of their most recent growth.  As I have been preparing my keynote for Beyond Borders, I had a stat touting its 180 million, which I have since been required to update in the matter of a couple weeks!  So, take a step back and admire the sure volume and numbers, but then think smaller, way smaller, and start building a strong platform of relationships and connections.

Posted: April 8, 2009 by Ben Smithee in AMA
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Sorry for the delay in updates!

Great things have been going on with the new Spych website set to launch in May!  Singularity Design has been working extremely hard and we have seen the beginning design iterations.  They look amazing!  Can’t wait to show everyone.  Also,  I have been preparing for the upcoming AMA Beyond Borders Summit in Dallas on April 15th.  The topic of the discussion will be social media and how it is changing the way we communicate across borders and how we as marketers and researchers can apply social media tools to our business.

We had a great meeting with some friends from Good Karma Consulting and they have a new product coming out that will be very useful and hip tool for researchers – KarmaCollage!  Keep a eye out for it, and we will give you updates as well.

’til next time,


Heading to Dallas for meetings next week before the AMA summit and will then be off to Austin for some video editing with John.

AMA Beyond Borders – April 15th in Dallas

Posted: March 5, 2009 by Ben Smithee in AMA
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Just got the news that I will be speaking at the Beyond Borders conference in Dallas on April 15th!

Let me know if you plan on attending!

More info to come!