My top 10 events for London Social Media Week 2014 #SMWLDN

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Next week is London Social Media Week. The fifth sixth time the event has taken place in London, and the first time founder Toby Daniels’ company, Crowdcentric, has been running the show directly. For previous events, Sam Michel’s Chinwag was in charge. I’ve live-blogged pretty much every time, and it’s been interesting to see the event grown in size and stature year on year.

Inevitably, the event has become more focused and commercial over the years. Like social media itself, it’s growing up. There are good and bad sides to that. People may gripe about inflated ticket prices and a monochrome agenda – but it’s more just the sheer size of the event that’s off-putting. If you look through this year’s agenda, there are plenty of gems to be found.

Here’s my top ten:

1. The Psychology of Persuasive Marketing Videos And How To Get People To Watch Them, 23 September, 10.30am: the fabulous Nathalie Nahai (The Web Psychologist) is always informative and entertaining.

2. The Sharing Economy Throw-down Part Three (#SMWLDN), “Connecting the Collaborative Economy”, 23 September, 11am: collaborative approaches are the future and I love the work being done by Benita, Bernie and co.

3. The Midas Touch: Turning Social Advertising Into Gold. Presented by Buzzfeed, 23 September, 12pm: Actually, scrap that, Buzzfeed is the future. Its rise has been phenomenal. This is a must-see.

4. Doing More with Less: the “Challenger” approach to brand building and marketing, 23 September, 1.30pm: Looks like a great event for startups, SMEs and any brands with a miniscule marketing budget.

5. Tech Tuesday: The Rise and Rise of Self-Publishing, 23 September, 7pm: authors are a fascinating case – if you’ve got an engaged audience on social media, you’ve got a ready market – why let someone else exploit that? (London Book Fair event).

6. Expert Breakfast: Forging a Lasting Relationship With Your Audience, 24 September, 8am: a Cass Business school event focusing on social media specifically for startups and SMEs – not a great title, but should be a useful discussion.

7. How News Organisations Are Bridging the Real Time Gap: the impact of social media on news publishing, 24 September, 12pm: with journalists from BBC News and The Guardian, this is my top not-to-be-missed event.

8. Digital Fashion, Content and Gender, 24 September, 7.45pm: has to be interesting – looks at how men and women behave differently online – with speakers from Mr Porter, DisneyRollerGirl, ASOS and Primark (London College of Fashion event).

9. Get Your Brand On: Why Wearable Technologies Matter for Your Business, 25 September, 1pm: we’ve heard way too much about wearable tech in 2014 but this session showcases great ideas that might hit a nerve.

10. How Can Twitter Bring the Chiswick Community Closer? 25 September, 6pm: okay I’m biased, I live there! But this looks like a genuinely useful dialogue on how local shops can team together to support each other via social media.

Finally, not on my top 10 blogging list, but worth a mention: I’ll be speaking at PostShift/ Somewhere’s Social Media Week Party and Lighting Talks, 7pm on Tuesday 23 September and The Hospital Club’s XX Talks: Social Media & Brand Management, 7pm on Wednesday 24 September. Come by and say hello!

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