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Friday, September 12, 2008

9 Keynotes And Lots of Meetups: My Fall 2008 Calendar

Despite living much of my daily life in the virtual world of social media on blogs, Facebook and Twitter, I am a big fan of real life events. Not only for the chance that they offer to meet real people facing similar challenges to you and learning from them, but also for the ability to make contacts that eventually lead to real projects or successful collaborations. I will spend a lot of time this Fall balancing a pretty ambitious speaking schedule with my full time role and projects, but I'm excited about the challenge. This post is a summary of the events I'll be at as well as an open invitation to anyone from the cities listed below to come out and say hi in person. So check out these events (including several discount codes!), and if you can make it please try to attend. At least you'll know where I'm going to be so you have no excuse not to come out and introduce yourself in person!

BlogWorld Expo - Las Vegas (Sept 20-21)
Keynote Panel + Panel "Beyond Blogging: Stories & Social Media Lessons Learned in the Real World"
Book Signing at 10am on Sunday, Sept. 21 | Discount Code - ROHIT8DC to save $200 Off

An unbelievable gathering of social media voices in one spot, my speaking roles will be as part of a panel on social media success stories on Saturday, and hosting a keynote panel discussion on Sunday morning about personal branding with Tim Ferriss and Mike Shinoda, followed by a book signing at 10am. Lookout for a post next week with more about this event.

Interact2008 - Washington DC (Sept 30)
Closing Keynote Panel "Growing Your Business Through Social Media"
This is one of the best interactive marketing and social media events to come to DC in quite some time and I'm thrilled to be on a panel with 6 other guys I know well and respect: Jesse Thomas, Frank Gruber, Ken Kaplan, Jim Long, Brian Solis and Nick O'Neill. Yes, its a big panel, but most of us know each other pretty well so the dynamic should be really fun. I won't give away any secrets, but this panel will not be like anything you have seen on stage before.

European PR Congress - Kiev, Ukraine (Oct 3)
Morning Opening Keynote "CEO Publicity In The Digital Age"
I have not done any events in Eastern Europe yet, so this is an exciting one for me as it will let me interact with a completely different group of communicators, and also focus more on PR - something I don't often get the chance to do. The event is very focused on reputation and CEO publicity, so I am really looking forward to hearing from some of the other speakers as well. If you happen to be in the area or know someone, let me know as I would love to organize some kind of blogger meetup as well.

ForumOne Community Event - Sonoma, CA (Oct 10)
Morning Keynote Discussion
The team behind this event is ForumOne, based right in my hometown of DC with distributed team members around the country. Jim Cashel and Bill Johnston, two of the main guys behind ForumOne manage to pull together some of the most engaging smaller events that I have been to in recent years. They always manage to attract a small group of top level engaged marketers, keep their events small and relatively low profile (note the site for the event barely lists any of the details) and yet keep the flow conversational without resorting to the unpredictable chaos of calling their events "unconferences." I may try to do a meetup/book signing in Union Square the day before in San Francisco if I can organize it. NOTE: We will also have books for SOME of the attendees of this event. If you will be there, let me know to make sure you get one of the copies.

Executing Social Media - Atlanta, GA (Oct 16)
Lunch Keynote | Discount Code - esmatl08rb to save $300
It will be nice to return to the city I spent four year in for college (at Emory) though unfortunately I learned that this is Fall Break week so I won't get to do an event back on campus as I had been hoping to do for marketing students there. Anyway, I'm hoping to organize a blogger meetup event on the night of the 15th, so let me know if you are in Atlanta and up for it. Also, the event will be providing copies of Personality Not Included for attendees, so if you're there make sure you get your copy!

MarketingProfs Digital Mixer - Scottsdale, AZ (Oct 21)
Opening Keynote "Ensure Your Conference ROI" + Panel "How Great Content Keeps Customers at the Table" | Discount Code - ESPKA08 to save $350 (before Sept 19th)
Marketingprofs is one of the few events that has a very recognizable face behind it in Chief Content Officer for MarketingProfs, Ann Handley. The event is a sort of confirmation of the power of her relationships and respect she has in the industry as it is almost a who's who of the digital marketing industry featuring two heavyweight keynotes with my good friend Gary Vaynerchuck and Ariana Huffington. I'm doing a third keynote of sorts, kicking off the conference with a rapidfire session on how to get the most ROI out of conferences, something I have thought about often but never presented on until this event. I'll also be on a great panel all about using content for marketing with Mildred Center (Sony), Esmee Williams (, Becky Carroll (Petra Consulting Group).

Future of Social Media - London, UK (Oct 28)
Morning Keynote "7 Counterintuitive Truths Of Marketing"
I usually take any chance I can get to be in London as it's one of my favourite cities and this day long event focused on social media should be a unique gathering in the UK market. Put on by the formidable organizers of the mega-conference Internet World, the event is somewhat expensive but will feature a good mix of brands and social media types. I'm hoping to organize a blogger meetup while in London and probably will make it to Paris for just a day or two to spend some time finally meeting my prolific colleague Eric Maillard who I have been admiring wanting to meet from across the Atlantic for more than a year.

AMA Houston - Houston, TX (Nov 12)
Lunch Keynote + Houston Book Signing (Nov 11)
Among my more well coordinated trips thanks to all the help from Henna Merchant of Dancie Perugini Ware PR, I will be doing a book signing and cocktail event the night of Nov 11th at Capone's Restaurant and speaking at a Lunch event sponsored by the AMA on the 12th. It is my first trip to Houston, but I have heard that there is a huge community of marketers down there and their AMA chapter is among the biggest and most respected in the country. If you're around Houston, be sure to let me know and I'll keep you posted on the book signing and blogger meetup event.

TelcoTV Expo - Anaheim, CA (Nov 13)
Keynote Panel "Beyond the Hype: Maximizing the Advertising Opportunity in Digital Media"
A little outside my usual type of event, this is a really interesting gathering of executives in the Telco and Broadband industries talking about a range of topics. My panel I'm leading will be all about the future of digital advertising and our aim will be to offer some insights into what marketers and interested industry players can expect next. If I have time, I may try to do a book/blogger event the evening of the 13th in LA before flying out back to DC.

I'm currently working out plans for another few events in the November and December. To keep track of my whereabouts, you can also follow me on Twitter or check out my Dopplr account as I keep both up to date. For a list of all my upcoming speaking events (including any additions to the list above), you can visit


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Don't forget the Chicago New Media Summit on September 15-16th at the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art.

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