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Creating and Leveraging Sustainable Social Media Communities
Danica Kombol, Managing Partner, Everywhere

Everybody talks about ‘community building’ and ‘driving the conversation’ in social media, but how do these abstract ideas translate into practice? How can you create sustainable communities while fostering a culture of consumer advocacy around your brand, cause or product? Kombol will look at real-world case studies from her work as managing partner with Everywhere, an Atlanta-based social media marketing agency, and examine what you can learn from their (and others) work. Don’t make the same mistakes as your competitors.


Why Time Consuming Blogging, Twitter and Facebook Strategies May NOT Work for Your Business: Consider These Alternative Social Media Strategies
Steve Miller, Founder and President, Legacy Educational Resources

Businesses are often told, “gather a following by tweeting several times a day, post to your blog multiple times a week and start a Facebook page.” Journalists, authors, marketers and a variety of other professions are often told this by experts (or bosses) in their industry. In this session, Miller will argue this strategy can often be counterproductive to authors, small businesses and others with a limited amount of time to invest. Through the examination of the work of low-profile authors and other case studies, Miller will pave the road for less time-intensive, alternative social strategies.


Quit the Daily Grind: A Former Newspaper Reporter’s Social-Media Journey to Freelance Success
Maryn McKenna, Blogger/Freelance Journalist

McKenna is a blogger for Wired, a journalist for Scientific American, SELF and other national publications and the author of two critically acclaimed books – but that hasn’t always been the case. Five years ago she was a medical writer with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, that is, until she built a self-sustaining freelance life through her intrepid blogging, tweeting and tumbling around the interwebs. Now, she’s ready to offer her advice. She’ll share how she progressed along her social media-enabled journey to independence and sustainability, while offering tips on how to carve your own, similar path to journalistic success.


Mine! No, Mine! : Who Owns Social Media?
Nancy Bistritz, Senior Director, Nurun

So, we’re eyeball-deep in social media for business, yet the question still remains: Who ‘owns’ social media in a corporate setting? A large corporation may be looking at as many as six potential owners among legal, human resources, marketing, public relations and communications. For a growing business, it’s important to make the best decision now instead of dealing with restructuring down the line. Each department may have a different message, agenda and ways of measuring their social success. So who to pick? How can all the departments get along and communicate effectively? And at the end of the day, who REALLY owns social media?


The Creative (not creepy) Use of Social Media Analytics
Adam Rice, Co-Founder, Looxii

Management and monitoring analytics are integral parts of any successful social media campaign. Yet, behind the numbers and charts there are real human conversations taking place. Turning off the analytical bots and digging into the data with human eyes can provide a number of benefits – from developing meaningful case studies to re-evaluating your style, tone and approach. In this presentation, Rice will explore some of the tools, tactics and even taboos surrounding social media analytics. He’ll discuss how professionals can use social data to develop creative strategies and aid in the day-to-day operations.


The Intersection of Social Media and Communicating Sustainability
Beth Bond, Curator, Southeast Green and Mandy Mahoney, Vice President, Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance
Content/Journalism Creative

How do you communicate policy and turn it into action in less than 140 characters? It’s a question that begs an answer following the parallel rise of sustainability in business and the mass adoption of social media communications. Beth Bond and Mandy Mahoney, with a robust careers in sustainable businesses around the Southeast, have been through it all. Join the pair for a discussion on social media, sustainability and communication while learning how communicating in the world of tweets can lead to positive social change.


The World Has Gone Mobile: Use Your Basic Web Skills to Build iPhone and Android Apps 
Andrew Zuercher, Developer, e2e apps
Mobile Techie

Ready to take this show on the road, but not sure where to start? Web developers, meet the Appcelerator Titanium platform. In this session, Zuercher will introduce the platform and explain how developers can build native mobile apps for iOS, Android and BlackBerry operating systems using coding languages they’re already familiar with (JavaScript, CSS and HTML). Learn to rapidly develop and deploy apps that are more social, local, media rich, interactive and adaptable across multiple platforms using traditional web development skills. Examine case studies, app examples and get a detailed tour of everything the platform has to offer from one of the founding developers – including walkthroughs for coding and advanced demonstrations.


Social Media for Advocacy: Using Next Generation Tools to Spread Awareness and Influence Policy
Hafez Adel, Director of Marketing, ReTargeter
Creative Content/Journalism

In less than a decade, social media has transformed from a pleasant online diversion to a legitimate tool for grassroots advocacy and communication, but it has never stopped evolving. Hafez will discuss the various ways activists have used social media to raise awareness and influence policy. He’ll examine the next generation of social tools, how they continue to revolutionize engagement and how to put them to work in the world of advocacy.


Would You Like A Badge With That? Event Organizing In A 2.0 World
Sloane Kelley, Interactive Strategy Director, BFG Communications
Techie Marketing/Business

From meet-ups to Tweet-ups, social engagement has traversed the boundary between online and off, real-world and cyber space. So what does it take to build a real-world, socially interactive event with long-term ambitions? How do you take a creative concept through the phases, from funding to execution and ultimately sustainability? Most important, how do you do all of this on a shoe-string budget? Kelley, co-founder of the successful technology conference series Geekend, will examine case studies from her own journey of taking an idea from concept to reality. Learn the dos and don’ts while avoiding potentially devastating pitfalls. Whether you’re a seasoned event planner, a DIY-er or a bootstrapped start-up, the session will prove a valuable resource when constructing your next event.


The War On Stupid
Andrew Davies, Lead Creative Juicer, Paragon and Patrick Rodgers, Journalist
Content/Journalism Creative

In a world where attention spans are measured in milliseconds and access to data is limitless, society has seemingly lost the ability to think deeply – or at least longer than an episode of Big Bang Theory. Information moves so quickly that we’ve lost the ability to process it effectively. Critical thinking has been replaced by sound bites, and niche media outlets reinforce our personal echo-chambers. Our brains aren’t keeping up with the data, leaving a gap that is ripe for exploitation by the evil forces of Stupid. That’s where the War on Stupid comes in. This presentation will illustrate the new “Stupid,” and introduce the general public to some of the heroes on the front lines. While there are an increasing amount of intrepid creatives rising up to combat the stupidification of our world, the forces of “Dumb” are strong.


The Great Unfollow Experiment
Desiree Scales, Bella Web Design
Marketing/Business Creative

What’s the value of a follow-back? Join Desiree Scales as she explores the result of her own social experiment: she unfollowed her connections on Twitter, re-starting from scratch. The move impacted her business, amplified her message, raised her Klout score and changed her life. Not only did the restructuring help eliminate an overwhelming signal-to-noise ratio on Twitter, but ultimately it contributed to higher-quality conversations, allowed her to listen to her audience better and respond faster and helped share her knowledge with an even wider audience. The psychology and usage patterns behindit are pretty amazing. Some people got upset. She lost some followers, but in the end managed to gain much more.


The Future is Now: Social TV and What Consumers Want
Eric Holtzclaw, CEO, User Insight
Marketing/Business Creative

Um, what is social TV exactly? You’re about to find out. Eric V. Holtzclaw, CEO of User Insight, will define Social TV, giving examples of how the four screens in virtually everybody’s life (the computer, tablet, mobile device and TV) are converging for an increasingly connected television-viewing experience. Learn the social TV landscape and who is holding the ace cards, what social concepts are coming together as marketable technologies, what this convergence means for advertisers and companies, what statistics say about what consumers want from their TV experience and much more. Session attendees will walk away able to identify key considerations when consulting brands and working with stakeholders, and how to facilitate their own success.


Be a Big Fish in a Small Pond: Growing Your Venture Overseas
Selah Abrams, FutureMoguls Foundation/CNN

In 1991, Abrams became an entrepreneur by bootstrapping a start-up retail and wholesale clothing line that grew from $1800 to several million in annual sales. But he didn’t stop there. Today, he manages an international entertainment promotions and production company with locations in Atlanta, Germany and South Africa. Join the lively discuss, with real world examples, on how Abrams went from a network of one to a network of thousands – all with the goal of expanding his entertainment and new media businesses across the globe and the continent of Africa. Emerging markets are red hot for the savvy investor. Learn the start-up and growth tips and how not to get burned from an expert that’s been there, done that and continues to grow well into the new millennium.


Designing for the Mobile Age
Desiree Scales, Bella Web Design and Andrea Busse, IntelaText
Techie Mobile

Optimize your brand for the mobile world through design! Make the transition between web and mobile seamless for your web site and customers. Explore how your basic web design impacts your company’s visibility in Siri and Google searches, and impress your boss at the same time. It’s everything mobile plus design, so take notes, bring questions and start designing for the transmedia generation.


Lessons in Video PR: Satellite Tours, Web Videos and Facebook Chats
Amani Channel

It’s a big world out there, and video plays a strategic role in bringing your message home – into anyone’s home. From satellite media tours to online video and Facebook broadcasts, video producer Amani Channel has worked on it all. His session will look at how PR and social media practitioners are using video to enhance publicity and brand awareness, encouraging the audience to share their own experiences and examine what works and what doesn’t in a fast evolving field. He’ll illustrate how video work has helped him garner media coverage in large news outlets like the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Forbes – something that can be done for any brand, company or individual.


Always On: Will Traditional Computers Survive the Mobile Revolution
Sosh Howell and Laura Davis

If things keep trending the way they are now, the standard methods of web distribution could be in trouble. But will mobile consumption eventually eliminate the world of desktop computing? It seems increasingly possible. Find out how the devices we use everyday, ones that are always on and forever by our sides, are reshaping the ways we communicate. Howell and Davis will examine how mobile is increasing its share of the market, what those trends mean for the future and how it is affecting businesses.


Real Life…Only Better: The Latest in Augmented Reality
Terri Thornton, Thornton Communications and Tomer Tishgarten, VP of Technology at Engauge
Techie Creative Mobile

Try on jewelry and clothes without ever leaving your living room. Find landmarks without a map. Assemble or repair things without paper instructions. See the weather before stepping outside. Play with a toy still in the box. Augmented reality, and immersive, jaw-dropping technology fast making its debut in the real world, can do all this and then some. Learn the latest developments, how they play into social media marketing and campaigns and tune in for some stunning videos and demonstrations showcasing the amazing power this new technology has to offer. You’ll be forced to re-think the limits of your brand and how technology will continue to reshape the way people do business.


Create, Connect, Collaborate: Words that Work Online
Lisa M. Russell, Georgia Writers Association and Dr. Laura McGrath
Content/Journalism Marketing/Business

In a world where user-generated content is sometimes valued more than the work of officials and/or experts, how can communication pros become influencers and trust agents in the digital sphere? Well, it’s a collaborative world, so lets collaborate! Participants will work together to identify strategies for creating social media content that reaches the correct target audience(s) and produces results. Russell and McGrath will take a look at the research, using real-world case studies to demonstrate proven routes to success. Attendees will submit collaborative writings in real-time, contributing to a Google Doc that will serve as a for conference attendees and beyond.


Crowd Financing 101
Jacqui Chew, Principal at iFusion Marketing
Creative Marketing/Business

Raising start-up capital has gone social, and that’s a good thing, according to Start-Up Catalyst Jacqui Chew. Crowd funding platforms like Kickstarter, Crowdrise and 33Needs has put the power of funding the hands of millions and led to a number of innovative ventures around the globe. In this fast-paced session, Chew will take attendees on a tour of crowd sourced financing as a whole, offering insight into the platforms, opportunities and limitations the new model has to offer.


Building Web-Based Augmented Reality Experience
Hafez Rouzati, Chief Architect – Argon Browser, Georgia Institute of Technology

Augmented reality has officially hit the mainstream, yet the search for the next killer AR web app continues. That’s where you come in. Join Hafez Rouzati, Georgia Institute of Technology researcher and Chief Architect of the Argon Browser, as he demonstrates how to build and deploy AR experiences across the web using the latest and greatest in web technologies and the Argon Browser he helped create. Put simple, Argon – an open platform for web-centric augmented reality experiences – is a game changer.

Connecting Georgia Greens – Real World Examples
Nancy Rogers, Leesa Carter, Elizabeth Patrick

Georgia’s green community is engaged and connected via social media. Individuals and organizations are expanding, connecting online and face2face in formal and casual communities. This panel looks at how organizations use social media to grow membership, increase awareness and boost event attendance. Panelists discuss real-world social media examples of what works, what does not, and what is on the boards to strengthen and multiply connections for their organizations.


Power Struggle: From Wall Street to Boner’s BBQ. Cultivating Responsible Fans in a Hyper-Connected World
Brian Smith, Ogilvy Public Relations’ 360° Digital Influence Digital Strategist
Marketing/Business Creative

After some very notable events in 2011, there’s really no question about it…The advance of social media has shifted marketplace power from the organization to the individual. So in a world where the wisdom of the crowd impacts business and government decisions, how should organizations respond? At the most strategic level, how is social changing how enterprises operate? At the customer level, how should brands respond to customer dissatisfaction in a 24/7 forum? The net affect is forcing behavioral change in both organizations and individuals. It’s now up to the business to cultivate responsible fans. In this session, I’ll crowdsource a top 10 list of how to cultivate #responsiblefans.


Educating [Dr.] Rita: Social Media Lessons Learned in Academia
Dr. Laura A. Palmer, Assistant Professor, Southern Polytechnic State University and Sarah Weldon, Administrative and Research Support, Southern Polytechnic State University

Social media marketing presents higher education with a number of unique challenges—especially when the marketing initiative originates within a small academic department. This niche marketing—as promoting a specific program of study within a university—puts a whole new spin on things. How do you attract applicants to the non-flagship programs via social media? Laura Palmer and Sarah Weldon of Southern Polytechnic State University will present an overview of their work on social media and marketing within higher education. They’ll discuss their exploration of social media for a department and look at the uses and practices of social media in the marketing of education. Their case study will talk about the difficulties of marketing a niche program and doing so in a culture that’s still grappling with the new ways in which it needs to reach its audience. For marketing professionals, Laura and Sarah will provide insight into a microcosm of education. Attendees will learn about what higher ed is thinking and doing with social media beyond the institutional top-level approaches. They’ll frame why this is important for marketing professionals. As well, Laura and Sarah will discuss what they’ve learned about brand, strategy, and audience in niche promotion for academia.


She Said, He Said: A Modern Day Battle of the Sexes
Jim Raffel, CEO, ColorMetrix and Shelby Sapusek, Marketing Coordinator, ColorMetrix

Jim Raffel and Shelby Sapusek debate social media etiquette topics including blogging, networks and new technology and how they pertain to personal and business use. They seldom share the exact same point of view on any topic. They share their experiences and opinions in weekly blog posts, a Twitter chat (#shehechat) every Thursday at 8 p.m. CST and now in live presentations. Their disagreements are sometimes minor and sometimes major, but the debate is always lively, entertaining and educational. In a live forum, Jim and Shelby encourage audience participation just like they do with the Twitter chat.


Socializing Local Store Marketing (LSM)
Dean Trevelino, Principal, Trevelino/Keller

Company after company struggles with how to manage their social media strategy at the local level. Most opt to keep it national through a corporate presence with the hope that it will trickle down to the local trade area of each of their stores. Other brands, particularly franchise systems, allow or enable franchisees to build and manage their own presence … To serve as an extension of their local store marketing. Much like traditional local store marketing, the system’s top 10 percent nail it and the rest fail or simply choose not to do it. In the world of social media, it’s a missed opportunity and ultimately a competitive threat when a mom and pop enters the trade area with the conviction and passion for the brand they built and a commitment to leveraging the powers and efficiencies of social media. So how do multi-unit businesses deliver a social strategy at the local store level that doesn’t take the cost advantages of social and make it cost prohibitive? That’s the solution that many companies seek and that we are eager to discuss … That ideal integration of human interaction and a customized technology platform.


The Social Journey: Steps to Becoming a Social Business
Moderator: Lisa Calhoun, CEO, Write2Market
Panelists: Lauren Middour, VP of Business Development,Speakeasy, Inc. – Kendrick Woolford, Marketing Manager, ShopVisible – Maria Stephens, Industry Leadership Specialist, Write2Market

Social media has become a necessary tool for nearly every business model. It is transforming the way we all do business by massively improving the way we relate and connect to our customers. But as so many businesses move toward integrating a social strategy, many more are “missing the social boat.” Hear from Atlanta’s top social media gurus in this panel session. Panelists will speak on best practices when it comes to: using social networks like Facebook and Twitter for reputation management, gaining business benefits from customer feedback, ways for humanizing content and socializing the culture in your business It’s more important than ever to engage customers where they live (online): One third of US consumers spend more than 3 hours online every day, and according to the PEW Research Center, 61% of that time is spent on social networking sites. Implementing a social strategy is the best way to integrate your business into the everyday lives of your target audience.

Crowdsourcing content: The social consumer as a source for content and dialogue
Renee Willet, Social Media Marketing Manager, The Weather Channel

As consumers continue to use social and mobile technologies to become amateur weather reporters- uploading photos and videos to the web and alerting residents of approaching storms- they fuel our national appetite for minute-to-minute updates. Learn how The Weather Channel partnered with Twitter and is tapping into the ongoing stream of weather-related tweets and integrating them into content across its many platforms. Hear about the new tool, The Weather Channel Social, which lets consumers follow updates in real-time and directly participate in any weather conversation. Through examples that showcase how social tools and professional forecasting were integrated across multiple platforms, you will understand how to tap into your own customers’ conversations and integrate their content seamlessly across your brand’s touch points, making each consumer connection more relevant and personal.


Lessons from the field: The impact of social media on investigative reporting
Evelyn Larrubia, Editorial Director, Investigative News Network and Mathilde Piard, Social Media Manager, Cox Media Group

Whether you’re an investigative reporter or someone interested in media, this panel will bring you up to date on how investigative reporters are using social media–both in gathering information and also personalizing it. An investigative editor and a social media expert come together to talk about the use of crowdsourcing and crowdfunding, the changing landscape for investigative reporting and the use of apps to bring stories closer to home.


Creating a Social Media Strategy that Affects Behavior using a Whole Brain Approach
Les Adkins,  founder and CEO of Orange SMS Consulting

Most companies and organizations are using Social Media without a strategy in place to affect behavior. Learn a  real methodology that takes your current Social Media efforts and focuses them into an effective strategy that allows you to affect your audience to move forward in a meaningful and productive way. Using the Whole Brain Approach, developed by Herrmann International, you will learn how to create social media messages that build trust, increase revenue, and reach a larger audience than you ever have before.


Maximizing Brand Engagement: The Convergence of Social Media and Search Marketing
Jennifer Dunphy, V.P. of Sales and Marketing, Vayu Media

In a 2.0 world, consistent visibility and brand engagement are key to outpacing competition. Many brands have used SEO and social media strategies to go from virtual unknowns to leaders of the pack. Today’s brands are seeing the value in recruiting industry experts to optimize their web presence for better online visibility and brand engagement. Hear from Jennifer Dunphy, VP of Sales and Marketing at Vayu Media as she shares best practices in SEO and social media for visibility and brand engagement, and how the two can work together to build your business online.


Photography 4.0: The mobile revolution
Keith Weaver, Creative Director/Photographer at Razorfish

There have been 3 major shifts in the almost 200-year history of modern photography: film, instant, and digital. Each played a part in changing how mankind has created art, captured history, and documented the way we live. The 4th shift is happening now; a global movement that is turning the world of photography on its head. And it all revolves around the phone in your pocket.


Integrating Social Media into Your Organization
Sherry Heyl, CEO at Concept Hub

Sherry Heyl launched The Change Challenge in 2011 which match volunteers with nonprofits to assist in integrating social media into the day to day responsibilities of the organization. The 3 panelist will be made up of participant in The Change Challenge, will share their experiences including how they focused in on the most realistic goals and the most efficient and effective approaches, the challenges they overcame and where they achieved the most success. The learning objectives are: Setting Realistic Goals, Overcoming Change Management Challenges and Measuring Social Media/Community Building Success.


Oops! Did I say that? Online Reputation Management Meets Social Media
Topher Kohan, SEO Coordinator at CNN Digital

It’s only a mater of time. In an age where social media is omnipresent, someone in your company will say or do something online that you’re not happy with. We will talk about how to deal with it once it happens – as well as ways to try and reduce the chances of it happening in the first place. Topher Kohan is SEO coordinator for CNN digital, supporting CNN, CNN International,, and CNN Mexico. He’ll walk you through the minefield that is online-reputation management for social media.


How to Mingle Social Media and SEO in 140 Characters or Less
Topher Kohan, SEO Coordinator at CNN Digital and Doug Gross, Reporter at

140 characters may be all you have to make an impression – both to interest and inform readers and let the search engines that will help them find you know what your online post is about. Topher Kohan, CNN Digital News’s search-engine optimization coordinator and Doug Gross, a technology and Web writer for, talk about the best ways to create SEO-friendly content without compromising strong editorial goals