Photo by LittleMissSilly
I’m on a panel next Thursday 1st May, at All Together Now – Social Media and the Future of Community Sport, a joint Sport England and Channel 4 event at the Channel 4 building.
This is what it’s about:
Over the course of the past three years the emergence of blogging, social networking services and platforms which showcase and share user generated content have transformed the possibilities of how we connect, converse and collaborate with one another.
â€™In the 20th Century, we were defined by what we owned, in the 21st Century we will be defined by what share and give awayâ€™ Charles Leadbeater, author of We Think
The potential for organisations and brands to harness these technologies and tools to engage with users, customers and their communities in radically new ways is becoming clear.
How can all those organisations working to promote active participation in sports and the brands that wish to sponsor their activates and campaigns work together to make the most of the unrivalled viral power and network effects of the web in the run up to 2012?
Other speakers will include Thomas Godfrey, Commercial Director of Sport England, Jon Gisby, Director of Technology and New Media at Channel 4, Rebecca Caroe, Gi Fernando of Technlightenment, Antony Mayfield and Ed Mitchell.
I’ll be there as an ambassador for social media, to share my experience of blogging, social networking, Twitter, etc. and give the representatives of sports organisations some idea of the possibilities and pitfalls of engaging with people via the web.
After receiving the invitation I was struck by two thoughts: 1. How much time I spend on football messageboards when I should probably be doing something else, and following on from that, 2. that sport may be the ultimate social object [WARNING: cartoon with rude word] i.e. conversation starter and social catalyst. If I meet a stranger and they let slip they’re interested in football, I know we’ll have plenty to talk about and there will be no awkward silences (well not unless they turn out to be a Rangers fan).
So it looks to me as though sports organisations have an open goal in front of them – they have something that most people love to talk about and nearly anyone has an opinion on. But will they slot the ball calmly home or sky it over the bar? Or will they be fatally distracted by the animated advertising board behind the goal?
There are still a few free tickets left, so if you’re interested in any combination of social media, sport and marketing, then register for the event, ask me some easy questions during the debate, and come and say hello afterwards.
If you can’t make it on the day but you’ve got any thoughts on how sports or other organisations should engage with people via social marketing, please leave a comment below. I don’t think I’ll be able to link to you from the stage but I’ll certainly Twitter my thanks if I use any ideas from the comments.
Thanks to Steve Moore of Policy Unplugged for inviting me to join the panel and giving me an excuse to post a photo of Celtic.
EDIT: I’ve posted my presentation slides to Slideshare. You can probably tell I was trying to keep things as simple as possible.