Win a free copy of the soon-to-be-published book by Brian Solis: What’s The Future of Business

Rethink your business model to incorporate the power of “user” experiences.

Whats the Future of BusinessBrian Solis is a principal analyst at Altimeter Group, and is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media. A digital analyst, sociologist, and futurist, Brian has studied and influenced the effects of emerging media on business, marketing, publishing, and culture. His book Engage! is regarded as the industry reference guide to building and measuring success in the social web. His most recent book, The End Of Business As Usual, looked at the changing consumer landscape, it’s impact on business & what companies can do to adapt & lead.

Publishing on March 11, Brian’s new book What’s the Future of Business will galvanize a new movement that aligns the tenets of user experience with the vision of innovative leadership to improve business performance, engagement, and relationships for a new generation of consumerism. It will provide an overview of real-world experiences versus “user” experiences in relation to products, services, mobile, social media, and commerce, among others. This new book:

  • Explains why experience is everything and how the future of business will come down to shared experiences.
  • Aligns the tenets of user experience with the concepts of innovative leadership to improve business performance and engagement and to motivate readers to rethink business models and customer and employee relationships.
  • Motivates readers to rethink business models, products and services, marketing, and customer and employee relationships with desired experiences in mind.

To mark the publication of Brian’s new book, Social: IRL is giving away a free copy of What’s The Future of Business, each Friday from now until March 8.

Learn more and enter to win at

You can also catch our recent video interview of Brian Solis for SMCKC, which features valuable social business insights and personal backstory

Brian Solis Interview: Social Business Insights and Personal Backstory

More than 150 people attended the Social Media Club of Kansas City’s January breakfast, featuring a special conversation with Altimeter Group analyst and Engage!and The End of Business as Usual author, Brian Solis. Hosted at Google Fiber Space in Kansas City, the conversation took place via a specially orchestrated Hangout, with Brian being interviewed by Social: IRL principal, Ben Smith.

We previously shared a Storify recap of attendee Tweets from the event. The full video of the conversation is now available and is embedded below.

In it’s entirety, the conversation runs for close to an hour, during which time Brian shares many valuable social business insights, as well as more personal insights and backstory.

Video originally shared on the Social Media Club of Kansas City website.

SMCKC Hangout with Brian Solis

More than 150 people attended the Social Media Club of Kansas City’s January breakfast, featuring a special conversation with Altimeter Group analyst and Engage! and The End of Business as Usual author, Brian Solis. Hosted at Google Fiber Space in Kansas City, the conversation took place via a specially orchestrated Hangout, with Brian being interviewed by Social: IRL principal, Ben Smith.

The Hangout was recorded by Google and will be available soon on YouTube.  In the meantime, here’s a Storify recap of attendee tweets from the event, sharing many of Brian’s key insights.

We also offer our congratulations to Social Media Club of Kansas City who, at the start of the morning’s agenda, were announced as inaugural recipient of the new “Outstanding Chapter” award presented by the national Social Media Club in recognition of outstanding efforts in representing Social Media Club goals and values through promoting digital advocacy and serving the local community.

Thank you for joining us in Des Moines for “Beyond the Keynote” with Brian Solis

Our event in Des Moines last week generated thousands of tweets, to the point that the #socialirl hashtag briefly hit Twitter’s worldwide trending topics.

We wanted to share some of the great insights captured in those Tweets, along with some of the blog posts from attendees recapping their key takeaways, and are pleased to include a selection of links below.

We also want to take another opportunity to thank our presenting sponsors CDS Global and Catchfire Media for making the event possible, and for the tremendous support they both gave.  We’d also like to thank local event partners Iowa Innovation Gateway, Central Iowa PRSA, Startup City Des Moines, and Downtown Des Moines, as well as the Science Center of Iowa for the great venue and incredible onsite support.

Thank you to each of our speakers, Geoff Wood, Liz Nead and Ken Miner, and of course a very special thank you to Brian Solis for the valuable insights and inspiration.

Finally, thank you to the 230 attendees who were part of the event, traveling to Des Moines from a five state region and representing more than 80 different businesses and 17 schools, colleges and universities.

Want to learn more from Brian Solis? Social: IRL will be heading to New York in October for Pivot – the exclusive two day conference Brian curates and hosts. An amazing opportunity to learn from an array of business leaders and innovators, and to connect with 500 attendees representing some of the very brightest minds in the industry.  Register using the exclusive discount code BeyondVIP and you’ll save 30%.

Meantime, save the date for August 30. Social: IRL is headed back to Des Moines with another very special event.  Join Social: IRL and Social Media Explorer’s Jason Falls for “All Business, No Hype, Social Media.” A special pre-sale is underway now, with discounted registration rates available until June 30. After June 30, regular registration rates will apply.

Storify Recap – A selection of attendee tweets from Brian’s keynote presentation

Brian Solis Event Motivates Silicon Prairie to Think Local, Act Dynamic – Recap by presenting sponsors CDS Global

One Word: Change – Recap from attendee Deb Brown

Connected Consumers – You Paying Attention? – Recap by attendee Michael Libbie

Top Takeaways from Brian Solis Keynote – Recap by attendee Seth Sparks

The above represent a selection of attendee recaps we’ve seen posted.  Please send us the link if you have a recap you’d like us to add to the list.

Join Social: IRL in Des Moines as we go “Beyond the Keynote” with Brian Solis

On Wednesday, June 6, more than 220 attendees from a five state region will converge at the Science Center in Des Moines, Iowa, for a very special “Beyond the Keynote” event with Brian Solis.  You can scroll down for a list of some of the 70+ businesses and organizations and 17 schools, colleges and universities being represented at the event.

Brian Solis is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors on the effects of emerging media on business, marketing, publishing, and culture. His book Engage! is regarded as an industry reference guide for businesses to build and measure success in the social web. His most recent book The End of Business as Usual provided critical insights on how the consumer revolution is changing the future of business and media.

On the afternoon of  June 6, Brian will be in Des Moines for a special event, presented as part of the Social: IRL “Beyond the Keynote” series.  Brian will discuss issues critical to the future of business, such as surviving “Digital Darwinism,” the rise of the connected consumer, the evolution of social business, disruptive technology and how to compete for the future, the psychology of engagement, and the rise of digital influence. Brian will also participate in a unique bigger dialogue style fireside chat, a format that goes deeper and on a more personal level than the typical keynote. There will be opportunity for audience Q&A, and an opportunity to join Brian and fellow attendees for special post event networking.

Prior to Brian’s main presentation we’ll also hear from special guest speakers Geoff Wood, COO of Silicon Prairie News, and Life Dare TV‘s Liz Nead. Geoff will be discussing tech and innovation in the Des Moines Area, and Liz will share a fascinating story highlighting how social media helped “level the playing field.”   As Brian Solis says, “In an era of Digital Darwinism, no business is too big to fail or too small to succeed.

Thanks to presenting sponsors CDS Global and Catchfire Media, register using promotional code IRL50 and registration will be just $50.  Additional event sponsors include Central Iowa PRSAIowa Innovation Gateway, Startup City Des Moines, and Downtown Des Moines.

Attendees registered on or before May 31 will also receive a free copy of Brian’s book, The End of Business as Usual.

A limited number of free student and educator registrations are available on a first come basis.

Visit the event page for full details and registration.


“I am a personal fan of Brian Solis’ books and have highly recommended them to other CEOs. His message is keen and positive in its forward thinking, which I believe will resonate deeply with Des Moines professionals. It is my hope that this event will spark dynamic conversations in our local community regarding the shifts all organizations must make in order to thrive in this rapidly changing landscape.”  Malcolm Netburn, Chairman & CEO, CDS Global

“Brian Solis is one of the true thought leaders in the social space. Our intention is for the Des Moines professional community to utilize Brian as a resource and an energizer. We hope to bring together members of the private, public, and educational sectors to discuss the future of communication in the social space. This event will be a first of its kind for Des Moines and we are truly excited to be a part of it.”                    Jon Troen, Managing Partner, Catchfire Media


 Who’s Attending:

Attendees are traveling to the event from Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Minnesota and Iowa.  We’ve listed below businesses and organizations so far registered. You can also view the complete attendee list on the Eventbrite registration page.

Businesses and Organizations Registered to Attend

  • CDS Global
  • Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield
  • CenturyLink
  • Barkley
  • Insight Advertising
  • Nationwide Insurance
  • Delta Dental of Iowa
  • The Integer Group
  • First American Bank
  • HyVee
  • Wells Fargo
  • City of Des Moines
  • Catchfire Media
  • Lava Row
  • Veridian Credit Union
  • The Kansas City Public Library
  • Startup City Des Moines
  • Rockwell Collins
  • ING
  • Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation
  • Silicon Prairie News
  • 3KB Graphics
  • Whitfield & Eddy, Plc
  • City of Lawrence, KS
  • Grand Falls Casino Resort
  • Riverside Casino and Golf Resort
  • Stansberry
  • Two Rivers Marketing
  • DMB Supple
  • Performance Marketing
  • Monk Development
  • Knapp Properties
  • CreateWOWmarketing, LLC
  • Shala Designs
  • Etc Graphics Inc
  • Iowa Credit Union League
  • Blank Park Zoo
  • JT Chesser LLC
  • Iowa Farm Bureau
  • SecurityCoverage
  • Social: IRL
  • Lawrence Kansas Chamber of Commerce
  • Emploi.Us
  • Des Moines Register
  • Mindfire Communications
  • Center on Sustainable Communities
  • Minnesota Council of Health Plans
  • ASG Software
  • Royale Concrete
  • Signature Style PR
  • McLellan Marketing Group
  • Braland Consulting, LLC
  • Schuster Consulting
  • Des Moines “I Have a Dream” Foundation
  • Spiral16
  • A Team Apparel
  • School Administrators of Iowa
  • The Bombshell Factor
  • The Computer Guy
  • Planning and Writing LLC
  • Holmes Murphy Associates
  • Bawte
  • Central Iowa PRSA
  • Iowa Innovation Gateway
  • Metro West Learning Center, LLC
  • Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony
  • Homemakers Furniture
  • Nead Inspiration
  • EMC Insurance Companies
  • Dropkin Editorial Services
  • LS2 Group
  • Coaching Actuaries
  • Meredith Corporation
  • Sukup Manufacturing Co
  • Share Marketing
  • National Publisher Services, LLC
  • SALT Solutions
  • iApps24
  • Great America Leasing Corporation

Educators and Students Registered to Attend 

  • Drake University
  • Minnesota State University
  • Creighton University
  • Iowa State University
  • University of Northern Iowa
  • The University of Kansas
  • University of Central Missouri
  • University of Mississippi
  • Dordt College
  • Iowa Wesleyan College
  • Simpson College
  • Southwestern Community College
  • Des Moines Area Community College
  • Vatterott College
  • Van Meter School
  • Ankeny Community School District
  • Waterloo Community Schools

As a social brand, we compete for the moment. As a social business, we compete for the future

To quote from a recent Brian Solis post, The Path from a Social Brand to a Social Business:

“While creating a social brand is a necessary endeavor, building a social business is an investment.”

“What’s the difference? A social brand is just that, a business that is remodeling or retrofitting its existing marketing practices to new media. A social business is something altogether different as it embraces introspection and extrospection to reevaluate internal and external processes, systems, and opportunities to transform into a living, breathing entity that adapts to market conditions and opportunities.”

To path to becoming a social business is a journey we must embrace to effectively compete for the future.

Read Brian’s original post in full here.

“The Path from a Social Brand to a Social Business,” will also be the theme for the 2012 Pivot Conference hosted by Brian Solis. We’ll be attending and would encourage you to join us. More details and a 20% registration discount here.

You can also join Brian Solis in Des Moines, Iowa, on June 6, as part of Social: IRL’s own Beyond the Keynote series.  A limited number of $50 registrations are available, and students and educators can attend for free. Learn more and register here.

Join Brian Solis and 500 of the top media minds in the business at the Pivot Conference

October 15-16, Social: IRL Principal Ben Smith will be joining Brian Solis in New York for the 2012 Pivot Conference, an event Brian both produces and hosts.  Ben is attending and supporting the event as a Pivot Ambassador, and because of that we are able to share a VIP discount code to save 20% off event registrations. The discount can be used in addition to the special early registration rate currently being offered, to represent a significant savings’ opportunity.  We strongly encourage you to join us at this event which offers learning and networking of the very highest caliber. Register using discount code VIP20 for the 20% discount to be applied.

From Engage! to The End of Business as Usual, the Social Compass to the  Conversation Prism, a website ranked among the world’s leading business and marketing online resources, and most recently his first official Altimeter Group report, The Rise of Digital Influence, Brian Solis  is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media.

In Social: IRL’s own conference series, Explore and Engage with Brian Solis and Jason Falls remains among our most highly talked about events, generating thousands of Tweets and dozens of blog posts.

In October, 500 of the top media minds in the business—marketing leaders who recognize the game-changing power of the plugged-in social consumer—will join Brian Solis in New York to attend the 2012 Pivot Conference.

As Pivot’s editorial director, producer and host, Brian takes great pride in creating a content framework and speaker agenda of the very highest caliber.

With the focus “From Social Brands to Social Business,” attendees will discover the blueprint for a Social Construct that will transform their business, earn a significant competitive advantage, and improve customer relationships in the process. Attendees will:

  • Meet the architects who are developing Social businesses and the agencies and industry experts who are helping them define new models for consumer engagement.
  • Hear about common hurdles, how they broke through, how they secured buy-in, and how they started to bring together lines of business and functions that did not previously talk to one another.
  • Engage with the most creative minds helping Social businesses connect with connected customers to influence behavior and outcomes.
  • Get inside the mind of the connected customer to learn how to influence decisions and become a trusted resource.
  • Convert activities and conversations into actionable insights that guide the creation of relevant product and services and inspire creative campaigns.
  • Measure the opportunities inherent in emerging and disruptive technologies to improve internal collaboration and customer engagement.
  • Define the customer journey pre-, during, and post-commerce to reinforce value, cultivate loyalty and foster advocacy.
  • Learn how Social businesses are not only improving stakeholder engagement, but how marketing, sales, service, product development et al, are adapting, improving efficiencies, and achieving business objectives through new methodologies.
  • Learn from the most effective strategies to successfully start the transformation.

Pivot also offers an exclusive opportunity to network and connect with the top social marketing minds in the business. By limiting attendance to 500 top marketing leaders, Pivot 2012 provides an elite opportunity to compare notes, share ideas and connect at the highest level.

Learn more at the Pivot website, where you’ll also have access to valuable research, case studies and infographics. For the latest updates you can also follow Pivot on Twitter.

We’re excited to be attending this very special event and to be able to share the VIP20 discount code. See you in New York!

In social media, going global starts with local – How localization and contextualization increase engagement

Today’s post highlights a valuable webinar opportunity with Brian Solis, principal of Altimeter Group and author of Engage! and The End of Business As Usual.  The webinar is hosted by Expion, a Social: IRL sponsor and leading provider of social media management solutions for enterprise clients.

Brian Solis

When brands effectively communicate at the local level, they reach their target customers with relevant content that resonates. Yet integrating social media into a marketing strategy presents unique challenges for regional, national and global brands. How do today’s top consumer brands manage their social strategy effectively across the globe and throughout their organizations?

Brian Solis from Altimeter Group and Peter Heffring from Expion explore the strategies and implementation tactics the leading global companies use to manage their social presence across different countries and markets.

Brian’s research shows that localizing social content for specific markets and cultures dramatically multiplies the impact in terms of engagement, virality and actual sales.

Peter will detail how technology supports Global Brands and the multiple strategies they use to form communities that retain a unified brand presence on a global scale.

Join Altimeter Group and Expion for this free webinar to explore how the leading consumer companies deploy a variety of strategies to reach customers at a local level.

In Social Media, Going Global Starts With Local

Thursday, January 26

2:30 EST / 1:30 CST

Click for Free Registration


Explore and Engage takes place in Denver June 14 – A look at who’s participating:

Explore and Engage offers a rare opportunity for those in public relations, marketing, communications, or anyone using the social web to engage customers or community, to learn direct from two of the most respected social and new media professionals in the nation: Jason Falls and Brian Solis.

The unique workshop like environment and limited registrations give attendees the opportunity to well beyond the typical conference and experience a day of interactive learning.

It also gives attendees a chance to connect. Not just with our speakers, but with each other.

We encourage networking between attendees both online and offline, to stay connected and keep learning well after Explore and Engage has ended.

The quality of attendees at Social: IRL events has been a key to their success. We’re looking forward to connecting with another great group in Denver. So far, participants include:

  • mBlast
  • Spiral16
  • Philosophy Communications
  • Pure Brand Communications
  • Expion
  • Sevans Strategy
  • Qwest / CenturyLink
  • The Gazette
  • The Denver Post
  • Faction Media
  • InTouch Public Relations
  • Johnston Wells Public Relations
  • Hip Chameleon
  • Linhart PR
  • 20/20 Strategy
  • Bagnulo Communications
  • PRSA Colorado
  • Kris Schindler APR
  • Exempla Healthcare
  • TiE Rockies
  • NavPress
  • Blue Marble Enterprises
  • Freedom Communications
  • Swenson Communications
  • Millennium Marketing
  • Cutter Communications
  • Focus on the Family
  • Yelp Denver
  • Rosalba Consulting LLC
  • Biblica
  • Cohn Marketing
  • Stefanie Jones Public Relations
  • FourthSegment
  • Admired Marketing
  • Aegean Communications
  • PR Newswire
  • The North Highland Company
  • Webb PR
  • ServiceMagic
  • Clear Path Writer
  • SJPR Inc
  • SAIC
  • Keeton PR
  • Denver Business Journal
  • Hands-On Labs Inc.
  • Plug & Play Colorado
  • SwagLove
  • Life Quality Institute
  • M Squared PR & Marketing
  • LCI
  • SnapEngage

This list only includes registrations that opted to be part of the public attendee list. Some of the businesses registered multiple attendees.

There’s still time to be part of Explore and Engage and connect with this great group of attendees. Registration is still open, but will close at noon on Monday, June 13.

See you in Denver!

Explore and Engage: Links and resources

We’re pleased to share some of the content posted by attendees following our Explore and Engage event in Wichita KS:

Social: IRL Event Recap

Social: IRL Photo Gallery

Start Thinking Video – Attendee Interviews

WATC Photo Gallery

Sarah Scoular Blog – Engage

Sarah Scoular Blog Post – Explore

Jenn Bailey SMCKC Blog Post

Joe Cox Blog Post

Spiral16 notes on Brian Solis Presentation

Spiral16 notes on Jason Falls Presentation

Wichita Business Journal story on Brian Solis

Wichita Business Journal story on Jason Falls

“Social Media as a Continuum” blog by Lynn Wolf

Lynn Wolf YouTube Videos: Brian Solis  Jason Falls

Chirpstory compilation of #EEICT tweets (does not included any of the post event tweets)

Facebook Event

Gowalla Spot

Explore and Engage: A Quick recap

Thank you to the 120 attendees at Wednesday’s Explore and Engage with Jason Falls and  Brian Solis.

As with all Social: IRL events, the goal was for a hands-on event, lots of practical experience and learning, and for you to leave with new ideas and tools you could implement in a very real way. From reading your feedback on Twitter I feel confident we achieved that goal. Thank you for all the great comments. If you have any suggestions for future events I would welcome your feedback.

Thanks to each of the sponsors: Start-Thinking, Cox Communications, Klout, Spiral16, mBLAST, Wichita Area Technical College, Mashable, AAF Wichita and Wichita AMA.

A special thanks to Kris Schindler and the team from Start-Thinking who not only helped create and host Explore and Engage but put in a tremendous amount of behind the scenes work and helped everything run smoothly on the day. Also a special thanks to the team at Wichita Area Technical College. What a fantastic venue! I hope we’ll be back with another event.

It was great to see such a high level of engagement from those attending the event, even from those not present but following along on Twitter. The conversation had been pretty strong for some weeks, prompting this tweet from Jason Falls more than two weeks prior to the event.  But things really took off the day of the event and continued through the next day as attendees kept the conversation very much alive.

In just those two days alone we tracked some 1,446 tweets with the #EEICT event hashtag.

Thanks Brian and Jason. The ideas, thoughts and knowledge shared by the two of you was not just inspiring but was also presented in a very real context that gave great value to our attendees.  Looking forward to our next Explore and Engage event.

Next up is the Social: IRL Social Marketing Boot Camp with Sarah Evans. Join us for that event February 8 in Springfield MO.

In just a short while I’ll be posting links to Jason’s presentation and to blogs, videos, photo galleries, and other content shared by event attendees.  If you attended the event and have posted any content online, please send me the link and I’ll get it added.  I’ll also be posting my own photo gallery and some video highlights soon.

Thanks again for being part of Explore and Engage.

Excitement building for Explore and Engage

It’s been great to see excitement building for Explore and Engage with Jason Falls and Brian Solis, taking place in Wichita KS, on January 19.

Attendees will be traveling to Wichita from as far away as Alabama and British Columbia.

Buzz has been building on Twitter, prompting this tweet from Jason Falls:

Explore and Engage is not just a unique opportunity to learn from two of the nation’s leading experts in an intimate workshop setting, but is going to be a valuable opportunity to network with and learn from other attendees who are clearly excited about taking their presence on the social web to a whole new level.

There’s still time to register and be part of this special experience, but spaces are limited so you’ll need to act soon!