Friday, June 29

Surviving Social Media: IABC/Las Vegas

A little more than two years ago, I posted my confession that it was my partner (not me) who said Web logs (blogs) were going to have a lasting impact on the communication industry in late 2003.

Fortunately for me, despite my skepticism, I approved what became a yearlong study on the patterns, perceptions, potential, and business application of blogs. The early work led me to speak at an International Association of Business Communicators/Las Vegas (IABC/Las Vegas) luncheon, were I concluded: no matter how you felt about it, social media was influencing the public and the media about products, services, policies, daily operations, and a company's bottom line.

Was I right about social media?

It resulted in the Singapore government paying out S$150 million to about 330,000 low-income workers five days before an election. It underpinned the biggest television show cancellation protest in history with Jericho fans shipping 40,000 pounds of nuts to CBS. It was behind the move by shareholders to oust JetBlue’s founder as president. It thrust the local Towbin Hummer flag controversy into the national spotlight. And, it is the reason behind Wynn Las Vegas becoming the first resort casino to have unionized dealers.

Amazing to me, despite the fact that social media has changed the communication landscape, most communicators (and even some bloggers) remain in denial. They say social media is a fad or not to be taken seriously. But the truth is (much like your message): if you don’t manage social media, social media will manage you.

On Friday, July 13, I've been asked back to speak at IABC/Las Vegas to present on a slightly different topic: what does it take to make social media work for you and not against you. While I'll touch on how to determine which tools — blogs, podcasts, digital media, and even PR Newswire releases — might work best for your company or clients, I'll also provide an inside look at some of the case studies we've covered and why this blog became the top ranked communication blog in Nevada.

Host: IABC/Las Vegas
Date: Friday, July 13
Time: 11:30 a.m. (networking)
Location: Las Vegas Country Club, 3000 Joe W. Brown Drive
Cost: $26 for IABC members and students, $30 for guests
RSVP: Visit by July 11

While some readers know I have social media experience — contributing to, participating on SpinThicket, assisting on a BlogCatalog project, working to partner with The Buzz Bin to develop something on myRagan, and launching three blogs for various clients — social media is only some of what we do (although some days, I wonder. Ha!)

So, in the hope of promoting this IABC/Las Vegas program to social media skeptics, I'm also an accredited business communicator who has worked on more than 1,000 accounts, written hundreds of magazine articles, contributed to five books, and scripted a documentary for PBS. I currently serve as an examiner for the IABC International Accreditation Board; governor-appointed state commissioner for the Nevada Commission for National & Community Service (AmeriCorps); honorary member of Les Clefs d’Or; and Educational Outreach instructor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Within the past three years, I've also served as an international research committee member for the IABC Research Foundation; director of public service for the Las Vegas Advertising Federation; director of public relations for the Business Community Investment Council; and in several other positions to assist nonprofit professional and community service projects. My work has earned numerous awards, including several Addys, EMAs, and Quills for writing, creative, and strategic direction. I've been honored as IABC/Las Vegas Communicator of the Year, WIC Agency/Production/Public Relations Principal of the Year, with the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce Community Achievement Award, and others.

Prior to Copywrite, Ink., I was creative director at an advertising agency in Reno and worked in the corporate communication department of a major utility. I'm a proud graduate of the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno.

I don't blog in pajamas or bathrobes (not that there is anything wrong with that), but some people might be surprised by the caliber of our clients (small and large) and, even more so, the results we've helped generate for people, products, companies, and even elected officials. So, if you're in Las Vegas on July 13 (and you've RSVPd by July 11), drop by for a few hours. We're even going to give away some quirky Jericho-inspired Copywrite, Ink. "blog promo" T-shirts.



Grant on 6/29/07, 10:14 AM said...

Business Wire a National Competitor of PR Newswire has been pioneering social media solutions for client's press releases. We held a seminar in Las Vegas on this subject in March. Can I talk to you about Business Wire and what we can do for blogs and other solutions?

Rich on 6/29/07, 10:23 AM said...

Absolutely Grant,

I am familiar with Business Wire. Drop us an e-mail at our company e-mail address, and then I'll contact you via my personal business account. It's going to tight for me the next couple weeks, but I have been adding some information from other wire services and would be happy to include BW.

Here's the general address, minus the @ sign:
copywriteinkinc (at)

Sweet Tea on 6/29/07, 10:58 AM said...

Your blog today has left me at a loss for words. I am impressed by your credentials as well as your knowledge. Sure wish I could be in Vegas for that conference but I know you'll report back to us.
BTW, I'd be surprised if you have time to wear pajamas or sleep.
Great article. Thanks.

Chaffee Street Cafe` on 6/29/07, 12:10 PM said...

You are incredible. And I love Tee Shirts. There isn't any way I can get to go but if you have any XXXL ones, I wear them like dresses over leggins, I am interested.

In fact I don't think you are busy enough. Just kidding. But don't take any work with you on vacation.


Rich on 6/29/07, 12:54 PM said...

JS and Theresa,

Thanks so much. I often tell people that we're busy, but never busy enough. ;) Admittedly, I used to be a workaholic of sorts, but I an now reformed (um, twice). One great trick I learned was from some very successful pros: a gym session, etc. is still an appointment; treat it as such on your schedule.

Anyway, thank you for the kind words. Really, anybody can do this stuff. Yes, I will certainly post a follow up and I'll look into that for you Theresa. Maybe I can do on online giveaway soon, but I have to talk to my partner ... other than investments, she controls the cash. ;)

All my best,


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