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LiNC and You - Hope you'll be joining us

Lithium Alumni (Retired)

PaulGillihamProfilePaul Gilliham is Lithium's Director of Customer Marketing,  responsible for customer engagement marketing, social media and Lithium's own community, the Lithosphere.

 

He is a regular blogger for Lithium and in the Lithosphere you'll see him as PaulGi. You can follow him on Twitter at @lithosphere or @bladefrog

 

 


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Hi all - I think the title says it all, I really hope to see those familiar customer faces at LiNC this year. It's a great opportunity to get face-to-face with not only the whole team here but also to meet peers and experts who, like you, are shaping social customer activities all over the world.

 

Obviously I work at Lithium and have a vested interest in you attending, that goes without saying. This will be my second event working as part of the LiNC team.

 

But I did also attend the first two conferences as a customer. I'd like to think I have a unique perspective on why LiNC isn't just like any other customer conference and wanted to share some insights with you.

 

The Company Line

This is the one event you can’t miss for the cutting edge industry thought-leadership, and best practices in social engagement, community management, and social listening. 

 

This year’s agenda is packed with more than two dozen challenging and provocative general sessions, breakouts, and workshops led by industry luminaries, peers, and the Lithium team.

 

As always, LiNC gives you plenty of networking opportunities with colleagues, peers, industry experts, and luminaries at our famously fabulous evening events – and a few surprises along the way.

 

As a Punter (as we say in England - it's a colloquial term for a paying guest or customer)

The above sounds great - well I hope so, I helped write it - but that isn't the whole picture.

 

In attending these events and having talked with customers at length about LiNC, about what works and what they find valuable, I find there are a number of things which jump out in their comments.

 

 

  • LiNC is a great source of information about the Lithium vision of how to approach social customer / community engagement - this comes from insight, not only from the Lithium team, like Lyle Fong, Joe Cothrel, and all the other experts we have, but also from the shared insights of other community and social experts and importantly peers just like you
  • LiNC gave people an in depth look at the product strategy and roadmap, with the whole of Friday morning traditionally given over to the subject of the platform, attendees can start to get a picture of both the functionality of the platform, but also an idea of how they might use it.
  • Spending time with the Lithium team and customers gave people confidence and reassurance that they were making the right investments in their social roadmaps
  • Hearing first hand from practitioners and community managers and analysts on what actually is working for companies in terms of approach, strategy and product, as well as how to govern and manage their environments is critical to get the best insight to their own planning
  • Getting to spend time face-to-face with my Lithium team, particularly my CSM. This is so critical for creating good relationships, and particularly as people spend so much time on the phone and email, building a face to face rapport between you is key. We added CSM time in last year, and we have added more time on both Weds and Friday afternoons so you can talk with your CSM.

We continually hear 'I love LiNC for the networking opportunities' and its tempting to just give more time for people to chat, but what is more useful is giving them time to network in constructive and guided ways.  This year, we are introducing new elements like an in depth Practitioner workshop with Joe Cothrel. Yes Joe will keynote. But he will also run a full afternoon for Community Managers to talk about new best practices, share real case studies and allow the practitioners to dig into issues that are important to them.

 

We are also planning a new 'Unconference' segment, where we take the hot topics right there and then, and allow the conference attendees to discuss and learn from experts and their colleagues. This year of course, we'll have the full Social Media Monitoring team with us too, so there will be plenty of insight from Jenny Zeszut, Margaret Francis and the whole SMM team on how you can understand your social landscape.

 

I think the other thing that I felt when I attended, and this is definitely something that I hear people say is, that it is so helpful and reassuring to meet with like minded people who have been through what I have, and know what it's like to be at the sharp end of the boat. It is tough working in an emerging space, and mixing with like minded peers that instinctively know your stories and can give helpful advice or just moral support is so important for many people. You definitely don't feel alone when you're part of the Lithium family.

 

If you have insights, comments or thoughts on your LiNC experiences, I'd love to hear about them. You never know, it might help another of our brethren join us in May.

 

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