Recap of Social Media Week Los Angeles by speaker, Yohei Nakajima

This is a recap of Social Media Week Los Angeles by Yohei Nakajima, Hub LA Events Director, who was a speaker for the workshop “Solving Problems Using Social Media [Social Good Day]” during #SMWLA.

I was working independently as a social media consultant for bars and events throughout Los Angeles during Social Media Week last year, so my participation in this event was limited to online. This year I had the opportunity to not only coordinate a workshop, but also the opportunity to share my expertise.

My involvement started when the Hub LA team started contemplating hosting our own event for Social Media Week Los Angeles. After reaching our to a few of our contacts, we were soon connected to Heather Mason, President of Caspian Productions, an events company that produces major conferences, including ones you may have heard of, like the annual Skoll World Forum in the UK. Caspian was responsible for coordinating the Social Good Day at Bergamot Station, with four different and interesting events around Social Media and Social Good.

I had a chance to work closely with Brady Hahn, President of Nonprofit Effect, to put together our workshop, including Dylan Conroy, Head of West Coast Sales at Keith Ferrazzi’s Relationship Masters Academy. Maybe because we were the only workshop during the Social Media Week Los Angeles, our event filled up very fast, which was exciting to say the least.

We decided on hosting a workshop so that people could receive direct and actionable advice, something often missing from panels and speaker events.

During the first thirty to forty minutes of our workshop, Brady, Dylan, and I had the opportunity to each speak on our topics: Brady discussed the importance of clearly communicating your business and needs; I talked about leveraging various social media tools to do research; and Dylan spoke of leveraging LinkedIn to identify and reach out to important connections.

It was the next hour of the workshop, however, that I thought was most beneficial to the audience. We provided the opportunity for about six to seven audience members to get workshopped: each stood up, explained their business within 45 seconds, described a specific problem they were facing, had a few questions asked by the group, and finally received specific advice from each of the speakers and many participatory audience members. What was most exciting was when two audience members started enthusiastically chatting to the point where we had to cut them off and tell them to trade information after the event.

From the experience, I’ve confirmed that I enjoy workshops where people have the opportunity to not only receive general tips but specific actionable advice and interact with audience members sharing their knowledge and insight. It sets the stage for people to naturally connect afterwards - hopefully to start working together.  These are the kind of collaborative practices around workshop topics like social media tools we will look to employ regularly with members at Hub LA.

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