If you’re like me, it might seem like everyone you know is going to IBM Connect. From the blogs to the conversations on Twitter – it can easily give you the feeling you are the only one not going.
So, as someone who won’t be attending this year, I figured it was a good idea to offer you my survival guide -- a list of resources that help me stay informed and connected while colleagues and friends soak up the event (and the sun!) in Orlando.
After all, you might not be able to be there physically, but you can still be there online!
The Connect to Connect Survival Tips:
Follow @IBMConnect on Twitter and check out the #IBMConnect hashtag. Anything going on at or around IBM Connect will generally be Tweeted with this hashtag. Even better, check out the IBM Social Aggregator for Connect site that lists Tweets, videos and blog posts about IBM Connect all on one convenient web page with links backs to authors’ profiles and other blogs. (This aggregator is also embedded on the IBM Connect site itself if you forget where to find it).
Keep an eye on central sites like the official IBM Connect site and this Social Business Insights Blog for relevant links, schedules, news and updates. (I’m told the Livestream blog and the Social Buzz Chats blog are coming later this week – those are always very popular!)
Speaking of Livestream, in previous years opening general sessions as well as some other sessions are broadcasted live. It’s a great way to stay in the loop. The link for the Livestream isn’t public yet, but will be posted on the IBM Connect site closer to the event.
Listen to the podcasts. There are several out there like IDoNotes and NotesIn9 for instance, that are really worth listening to if you want to know what’s going on in the IBM collaboration community. Leading up to and during IBM Connect they tend to do lots of interviews and often also live recordings from the conference itself.
Check out PlanetLotus. This aggregator is the place to go for all blogs in the IBM collaboration community. Another great source for relevant blogs and articles is CollaborationToday that offers a curated and categorized list of blog articles.
Check out the IBM Connect Community on SocialBizUG. This is an online Connections community where people can connect, post pictures, links and videos, search for information, post questions and get involved while at IBM Connect. The great thing is - this is also open to anyone not at the conference, so we can be part of it! (And if you haven’t already, be sure you join the SocialBiz User Group.) And if IBM Connect is simply never going to be in the books for you, this site also lists information on other user group events that are being held across the world. Check out your local one to see if they do a “Connect Comes to You” event in the months after IBM Connect.
Official #IBMConnect Channels
IBM itself is also maintaining several social channels for information regarding this event that you can find here:
Official Twitter account: http://twitter.com/IBMConnect
Official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IBMSocialBiz
Official Instagram page: https://www.instagram.com/IBMConnect
Official YouTube channel: http://youtube.com/IBMSocialBiz
Official Pinterest page: http://pinterest.com/ibmsoftware/social-business/
Some Twitter Lists to Follow
But don’t just follow the official channels, the best (and often fastest) way to know what is really going on is to connect to actual attendees. So follow and connect with people on the different social streams that are there. Who to follow? Well there are lots and finding the right ones can be difficult if you’re new to this. This year the Connect social team created some Twitter lists for you to easily find speakers, analysts and members of Team Social.
Another good basic set of active IBM community Tweeps is the IBM Champions Twitter list. These are some of the most active members in the community and it’s an easy starting point to broaden your network. Don’t be afraid to interact with them either. These are people that were recognized by IBM for their active role in the Community so in general they are really open and willing to engage with you.
So, although none of the above really replaces the actual ‘IBM Connect experience’ itself, and you will most likely still pine away behind your desk while colleagues and friends enjoy the Orlando sun and IBM Connect vibe, there are still ways to stay in the loop.
Use these links to stay informed, keep connected and if you’re smart – use the information you gather to get arguments to convince your boss why he should let you go to IBM Connect next year!
I hope to meet you there! In the meantime, you can follow me and reach out to me @FemkeGoedhart!
I’m sure this list is far from complete. Any more tips I might have forgotten? Add them to the comments!