#Expion12 Video Highlights: Jason Falls

Next in our series of interviews from Expion’s recent Social Business Summit, we chat with Social Media Explorer’s Jason Falls.

Jason raised some eyebrows when he opened the Summit by telling attendees that “Social Business” was “a BS term.” In this short video, Jason explains why.

In this second video, Jason talks about “the ultimate goal” in social business, and the “first domino” effect of great content.

We’ll be posting one final video soon, featuring H&R Block’s Scott Gulbransen, 360i’s Matt Wurst, and Garmin’s Jake Jacobson.

See our earlier posts for interviews with Matt Ridings, Amber Naslund, and Jeremiah Owyang.

Contact Expion at summit@expion.com if you would like to receive details about their next Social Business Summit, taking place in 2013.

Social: IRL Des Moines with Jason Falls – A Look At Who’s Attending

On Thursday, August 30, Social: IRL returns to Des Moines with “All Business, No Hype, Social Media” – an in-depth discussion on social media tools, tactics, content, planning, strategy and measurement led by Jason Falls. Ranked by Forbes Magazine as one of the nation’s “Top Ten Social Media Influencers,” Jason Falls is an author, speaker, CEO of Social Media Explorer – a digital marketing agency and information products company, and author of SocialMediaExplorer.com – a fixture at or near the top of the AdvertisingAge Power 150 Marketing Blogs.

In addition to two 90 minute workshop style sessions lead by Jason, the afternoon will feature special guest presentations by two innovators who are based locally in the Des Moines area and creating a national impact with their work. We’ll  be hearing from Ben Milne, Founder and CEO of Dwolla, and Angela Maiers whose talk at  TEDxDesMoines in August 2011, lead to the #YouMatter Manifesto, which quickly grew to become a social media-fueled international movement.

A diverse group of attendees are coming together for the event, taking place at the Science Center of Iowa. Attendees include large brands, regional and local businesses, non-profits, higher education, advertising and public relations agencies, financial and professional services, retail, professional and trade organizations, and tech startups. Not only will they be learning from one of the most respected names in the industry, but they’ll have a chance to learn from each other and participate in valuable networking.

Visit the event website for additional information and to register.

In the meantime, here’s a list of some of the businesses and organizations participating in the event.  A full list of attendees can be found on the Eventbrite registration page.

    • Hy-Vee
    • The Principal Financial Group
    • Lessing-Flynn Advertising
    • Veridian Credit Union
    • StruXture Architects
    • Farm Bureau Financial Services
    • Sprint
    • Gannett
    • The Integer Group
    • Flynn Wright
    • Greater Des Moines Partnership
    • Kum & Go
    • Drake University
    • University of Northern Iowa
    • Wells Fargo
    • Spiral16
    • Homemakers Furniture
    • 3KB Graphics
    • Pella Corporation
    • Happy Medium
    • Nationwide Insurance
    • Contemporary Business Solutions
    • Animal Rescue League of Iowa
    • McLellan Marketing Group
    • Fresh Image Design Consultants
    • Iowa Society of CPAs
    • Whitfield & Eddy PLC
    • Knapp Properties
    • AKC Marketing
    • Dwolla
    • Iowa Credit Union League
    • Iowa Innovation Gateway
    • RMS Consulting Services
    • Lava Row
    • Moth Media
    • GuideOne Insurance
    • StartupCity Des Moines
    • ISEA
    • Newton Manufacturing Company
    • Social Inc
    • ME&V
    • Social Media Club of Des Moines
    • Lakeside Products
    • Astound Solutions
    • Kirkwood College
    • One Social Media
    • Corporate Image
    • St. Gregory Retreat Center
    • BasicLeigh Communications, LLC
    • Des Moines Christian School
    • Brand Driven Social
    • Sage Assurity Financial, Inc
    • Clifton Larson Allen LLP
    • Broken Arrow
    • Acutezza Group
    • McGowen, Hurst, Clark & Smith, PC
    • Right Stuff

Social: IRL Des Moines – Announcing Special Guest Speakers, New Registration Options, and Post-Event Networking

On August 30, Social: IRL returns to Des Moines, Iowa, with “All Business, No Hype, Social Media” featuring Social Media Explorer’s Jason Falls.

Jason will lead attendees through an in-depth discussion on social media tools, tactics, content, planning, strategy and measurement.  Over the course of two 90 minute sessions, attendees will learn how to use social media strategically, identify specific actionable goals, apply business discipline and proven best practices, stop fearing risks and start mitigating them, measure performance, and get results. Jason will also discuss social media techniques and metrics for building brands, strengthening awareness, improving service, and driving better leads, and will equip attendees with practical knowledge, supported by plenty of case studies and valuable takeaways.


Special Guest Speakers

In addition to the main program with Jason Falls, we are pleased to announce two special guest speakers. Both are highly regarded innovators who remain based locally in the Des Moines area while creating a national impact with their work.

We’ll  be hearing from Ben Milne, Founder and CEO of Dwolla, the cash-inspired payments network setting out to revolutionize the future of online and mobile payments. Ben will bring fresh perspectives on Dwolla, with a behind-the-scenes conversation about growing, maintaining and supporting communities, both on and offline.

We’ll also be hearing from education and technology consultant Angela Maiers whose talk at  TEDx Des Moines in August 2011, lead to the creation of the #YouMatter Manifesto, which quickly grew to become a social media-fueled international movement.

Visit the event page on our website for additional information and registration.


New Registration Options

Registrations for the event are heavily subsidized at just $65, or $20 for students and educators.

We recently introduced a new  local sponsorship option. For $500 a business can secure a block of 5 event registrations and also receive valuable event branding plus the opportunity to distribute promotional material.  Details are on the Eventbrite registration page.

In true Des Moines style, we have also added the option to register and pay using Dwolla.


Pre and Post-Event Networking

We will be announcing post-event networking to run from 5 to 7pm. Jason Falls is confirmed to stay for the entire networking event and is looking forward to connecting with attendees in this more relaxed setting.

We always encourage attendees to connect prior to the event. You can find a current list of attendees on the Eventbrite registration page. Many attendees included their Twitter names.

Check out who else is attending, connect with them on Twitter, and join the conversation about the event using the #socialirl hashtag.

Spruce up your social this spring – Register for this valuable three-part webinar series

We’re excited to share details of this upcoming webinar series being offered by Social: IRL partner Spredfast.

The webinars feature industry thought leaders such as Jeremiah Owyang, Jason Falls, and Michael Brito and will provide valuable insights on key issues such as creating and sharing great social content, delivering unique customer experiences, and creating social programs that are optimized for maintenance and growth.

Click here for full details and free registration.

The webinar is the latest free resource offered by our friends at Spredfast. We’ve enjoyed sharing many of their whitepapers and best practice documents, all of which are available for free download (registration required) via the Spredfast website.


Creating and Using Great Social Content

Jason Falls, May 15, 1pm CT

A well-manicured social presence blossoming with great content is what draws people to your gate. Join us to examine the continued importance of great content and how to keep your social fresh and engaging.

Details and free registration.


Knowing and Delighting Your Social Customer

Michael Brito, June 5, 1pm CT

To set the hive buzzing you need to provide a consistently compelling social experience. Join Michael Brito and social business leaders as they discuss the importance of knowing and understanding social customers and how to use that knowledge to deliver value, provide unique experiences, and constantly exceed expectations.

Details and free registration.


Organizing and Creating Social Program Processes

Jeremiah Owyang, June 26, 1pm CT

Plotting your social presence and implementing processes for maintenance and growth can be the most difficult parts of undertaking social initiatives. They are also the most crucial steps to guarantee success. Listen to thought leaders as they provide advice and key insights into organizing social at scale.

Details and free registration.

Thanks everyone who joined Social: IRL in Wichita and Kansas City – Event recaps and key takeaways

The last few weeks have been busy for Social: IRL, with events in Wichita and Kansas City. January 31, we headed to Wichita, KS, to host “No BS Social Media” with Social Media Explorer’s Jason Falls.  Then, on February 9, we were in Kansas City with “Conversation Agent” Valeria Maltoni for “Rethinking Business in the Age of the Social Consumer.”

We wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who participated in these two special events and to share recaps posted by several event attendees.

No BS Social Media:

Jason Falls with SocialVolt's Derrek Harter, Joe Cox, and Scott Oppliger

We were joined in Wichita by a great group of attendees – the individual business and organizations represented are listed in this earlier post.  Jason Falls delivered a powerful presentation focusing on three key areas of social media – planning strategically, driving business, and measuring success.

Thank you event sponsors Cox Communications, Andy McGinnis Public Relations, ColabDigital, Spredfast, SocialVolt, Expion, Spiral16, emfluence, and ManageFlitter.

And a special thank you to our hosts Junior League of Wichita, who not only provided a great event space but treated attendees to food from their new cookbook.

For a recap of the event and a special video interview with Jason Falls, check out this post “Answers to tough Social Media Questions,” by event sponsor Sprial16.

Rethinking Business in the Age of the Social Consumer:

A diverse group of local and regional business, and national brands and agencies, joined Social: IRL in Kansas City for “Rethinking Business in the Age of the Social Consumer.”  The full attendee list is included in this earlier post.

Spiral16 Interview with Valeria Maltoni

Valeria Maltoni started the day with the keynote “Rethinking Business” session, which challenged attendees to rethink, deconstruct, and reconstruct established business practices. Afternoon sessions included Garmin’s Jake Jacobson on adding personality to a brand, Armstrong Teasdale’s Jeff Schultz on legal issues surrounding ownership of online content and community, Appinions‘ Larry Levy on rethinking influencer marketing, Spredfast’s Austin Lytle who helped attendees answer the question “Do I Need a Social Media Command Center”, and Expion’s Kevin Magee on the opportunities for regional and national brands to “take social local.”  The day wrapped up with SocialVolt’s Joe Cox and Spiral16’s Eric Melin leading a discussion on key takeaways.

Thank you event sponsors Spredfast, SocialVoltExpionSpiral16Appinions, emfluenceManageFlitter, Garmin, and the Social Media Club of Kansas City.  Also a special thank you to our venue, the Crowne Plaza Kansas City and their representative Patrick Conroy who not only took great care of attendees but took additional steps to ensure we had a robust wifi network with plenty of additional bandwidth.

For recaps and key takeaways from the sessions, check out these posts from some of our attendees:

Spredfast – Rethinking Business in the Age of the Social Consumer: Social IRL Insights

Tony Faustino – 5 Takeaways from Valeria Maltoni: Rethinking Business in the Age of the Social Consumer

Katy Ryan Schamberger – Conversation Isn’t Merely An Art Form; It’s A Business Strategy

Sprial16 – How to Refocus Your Business in the Social Age (includes video interview with Valeria Maltoni)

Ashley Mahoney – Social: IRL Conference in a Nutshell

Less of a book and more of a translator between “social media people” and “business people”

Today’s post is a guest post from Joe Cox, Marketing Director at SocialVolt, a Social: IRL sponsor offering web-based social media management solutions for companies and agencies that integrate engagement, brand monitoring, campaigns, influencer management, and compliance.  

The new book by Jason Falls and Erik Deckers, “No Bullsh*t Social Media,” (affiliate link) is really less of a book and more of a translator between “social media people” and “business people”.

It would be a mistake to skip this book just because it’s another book about social media. I’ve read them all too, and at some point you’ve heard it all and it starts to become less about learning and more about preaching to the choir.

However, this book is not a 10,000 feet in the air look down at the world of social media, but instead a boiled down, in the trenches approach to explaining what social media can do and won’t do for a company.  The key to its value is that it does this in an absolute business first approach and backs up everything it says with case studies and comparisons to traditional marketing and business in a language that executives understand.

It’s the Rosetta Stone of social media marketing for business.  Use it as a translation device between you and the decision makers in your company for the best success.

The book reminds us not to get caught up in the hype.  Yes, it’s a different place than it was three years ago, but social media still has a long way to go before it’s used universally as a way to communicate to customers.  There’s also a huge gap between those using it and those using it effectively.  For example, look at Altimeter Group’s new study that found less than half of companies that are using social media are doing so with a strategic plan behind it.  Essentially, people are still flying blind with no clear goals or objectives.

My Favorites Parts of the Book:

The book is written in a colorful way from the title onward and proves that a book doesn’t have to be boring and long winded to have real business worth.

Early in the book they tackle ROI in a great way.  It’s always the big elephant in the room and the first thing that people who don’t understand social media will bring up.

Their explanation is great!  Turns out, ROI isn’t even the right question to begin with.  You can’t ask what the ROI is before you even get started, it’s a backwards approach! ROI is a business metric and that means you’ll need to set business goals that track to your social media strategy.  Yes it can be done, and we currently do exactly this with digital as well as media buying.

It also needs to be said that there is more worth to social media than simply financial.  They bring up a great quote from Meerman Scott asking, “What’s the ROI of your secretary?!”  Meaning that you don’t measure the ROI of the person who answers the phones at the front desk, so how is social media different?

I also particularly enjoyed that towards the end of the book, Jason talks about his hometown of Pikeville, Kentucky and how a small town ecosystem mirrors closely what we see happening in social media today.  Since I come from the small town of Pleasant Hill, Missouri, the comparison really hit home and I could clearly visually and relate to his point.

I greatly enjoyed this book, but not just as a book to teach people what social media is, I enjoyed it because it helps people see how social media has matured into something a business can utilize safely, effectively, and most importantly, strategically.  Yet this book does it in a way that still keeps all the “squishy” parts of social media intact.  I recommend you go out and grab this book and don’t miss Jason as he swings into Wichita, Kansas, for a Social:IRL event on January 31.

Join Social: IRL and Jason Falls in Wichita on January 31.

Limited registrations just $35.  All attendees will receive a free copy of Jason’s “No BS Social Media” book reviewed above.

Register for Jason Falls: No BS Social Media

Join us in Wichita for “No BS Social Media Marketing” with Jason Falls

On January 31, Social: IRL will return to Wichita, Kansas, for “No BS Social Media Marketing” with Jason Falls.  Limited registrations are available at just $35.

Jason Falls is a nationally recognized leader in social media, public relations and communications. He is an author, educator, consultant, professional speaker and the name behind Social Media Explorer. He was recently ranked by Forbes as one of the “Top Ten Influencers in Social Media.” You can find him on Twitter @JasonFalls.

For this special event in Wichita, Jason will start the evening with an hour long presentation “No BS Social Media Marketing”  – a powerful presentation with plenty of case studies and practical take aways. Jason will then spend another hour in open Q&A with the audience – a unique and valuable opportunity to put your question to a leading nationally acclaimed expert. We’ll then spend the final hour networking with Jason and fellow attendees and Jason will also sign copies of his highly acclaimed new book, No BS Social Media – The All-Business, No-Hype Guide to Social Media Marketing. Every attendee will receive a free copy of Jason’s book.

You can learn more and register on our event page.

Some of the businesses and organizations you’ll be able to connect with at the event include:

Cox Communications

Armstrong | Shank

Cessna Aircraft Company

Kansas Humane Society

Sterling College

Hawker Beechcraft

Koch Industries

Colab Digital

Stucky Nolte

Kansas Credit Union Association

American Red Cross Blood Services

Wichita on the Cheap

Koch Creative Group

Pierpoint Technology Group

The Golf Warehouse

Shay Chic Events & Design

West Heights United Methodist Church

Star Lumber & Supply

The Conlee Group

Media Partners, Inc

Kansas Area United Methodist Church

Andy McGinnis Public Relations

Oypx, LLC


Practice Living Joy

The Bombshell Factor™

Social Focus by CG





Purple Wave, Inc.


New World Energetics

Catalyst Creative Services

Cohlmia Marketing

Thank you event sponsors Cox CommunicationsAndy McGinnis Public RelationsColab DigitalJunior LeagueSpredfastSocialVolt, Expion, Spiral16emfluence, and ManageFlitter.

See you in Wichita on January 31. Spaces are limited so early registration is encouraged.

Join Jason Falls in Kansas City and Wichita for “No BS Social Media Marketing”

We’re excited to announce two new events with our good friend Jason Falls. We’re also excited to be able to make these events highly affordable and accessible with registration at just $35, which even includes a copy of Jason’s brand new book.

You’ll be able to join Social: IRL and Jason Falls in Kansas City on October 4 or Wichita on January 31, for special events helping mark the launch of Jason’s new book, No BS Social Media – The All-Business, No-Hype Guide to Social Media Marketing.

Jason Falls is a nationally recognized leader in social media, public relations and communications known for his engaging style, wit and humor, brutal honesty and adding value to each audience’s experience. He is an educator, consultant and professional speaker and the name behind Social Media Explorer. You can find him on Twitter@JasonFalls.

Jason has also proved extremely popular in Social: IRL’s own conference series, as part of our Explore and Engage boot camp which he co-presents with Brian Solis.

For these special events in Kansas City and Wichita, Jason will spend the first hour delivering a presentation on “No BS Social Media Marketing” and will then take another hour or so to answer attendees social media questions and lead group discussion. We’ll then spend the final hour with a book signing and networking. Don’t miss this unique, fun, informal yet informative, presentation and networking event with Jason Falls.

Registration is just $35 and includes a copy of Jason’s brand new book, which publishes in September, 2011.

Kansas City details and registration

Wichita details and registration

We’re also offering very affordable sponsorship opportunities starting at just $250. Sponsorships each include event registrations and copies of Jason’s book, as well as valuable online and on-site branding plus direct engagement with both Jason and the attendees prior to and during the event.

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
  • Examiner.com
  • 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.