In just two years, Social Media Week has grown into a worldwide endeavor in which some of the most well known companies, including Time Inc., JWT and Google, host individual events around the globe to share and discuss the newest trends and developments in social media.
We were lucky enough to be able to participate in a couple of fantastic panels for Social Media Week 2011, which ended last Friday, and thought we’d wrap up our involvement with a bit of post-event buzz analysis.
Before we get started, you should know that we limited our monitoring to a few different media types including micromedia (Twitter), video sites, image sites, blogs, public Facebook pages and mainstream news. This was to make sure that the data we were pulling really was Social Media Week-focused. Also, this is a quick, fairly high-level look at the SMW11 buzz — to get the most value out of this data requires comparing it to previous years and placing it against a set of established goals. Since we don’t know the goals and objectives of the Social Media Week team, we’re just giving an overview and some of our initial thoughts around the event. Now, with those couple caveats out of the way, let’s dive in.
Global Is Right
What stands out about the Social Media Week buzz is the level of participation from all the host cities. Over the last 14 days, more than 40% of the online chatter surrounding Social Media Week has been in languages other than English, with the most prominent being Portuguese. São Paulo was one of the host cities of Social Media Week, and its residents and visitors came out in full force to chat and learn about new social media trends.
Following Portuguese were Italian, German and French. A global event in the truest sense, this data shows just how diligent the Social Media Week planning team has been in bringing multiple cities around the world into the fold and getting them deeply involved in It’s also a clear demonstration of the traction social media has gained over the past year.
A Deeper Look
If we click into the actual posts that people published during Social Media Week, we see that most of them were shares of blog posts advertising or recapping individual panels, 4square check-ins, photo sharing, general mentions of attendance, and quite a few positive comments and thank-yous. What is most interesting is that, although the majority of the mentions came through via Twitter, they were often sharing blog posts and longer discussions surrounding specific Social Media Week panels and topics.
This kind of behavior — the extensive sharing of one conversation medium through another — shows the supportiveness and enthusiasm of the overall Social Media Week community. This is also proved by the fact that most of the shares came from individual attendees rather than the main Social Media Week organization accounts.
What’s it All Mean?
As we mentioned above, this is a very high-level look at the chatter surrounding Social Media Week 2011, but there are a couple takeaways we can glean even from this quick glance. Most significantly, Social Media Week has an engaged and enthusiastic audience. The people who attend the panels are interested and supportive, most likely because of the vast array of panel topics and organizations involved, as well as the extended timeframe and various host locations of the overall event.
This type of set-up is ideal for many folks because it is very much an opt-in, come-as-you-please endeavor — people can explore the facets of social media that most interest them and stay for as much or as little as they like. Social Media Week invites the truly interested to engage, thus garnering some pretty strong support.
The caliber of speakers and hosting organizations this year shows just how much Social Media Week has grown, and it will be exciting to watch this event continue to evolve and expand over time. Did you attend any Social Media Week events? If so, which ones, and which did you most enjoy and learn from? Share your experiences with us in the comments!