Don’t miss the first Think Influence event of 2011! Our members voted for an event on who is an influencer and how do you attract them. Here it is!


  • Don Bulmer, VP, Influencer Relations, SAP
  • Mike Fauscette, GVP, Software Business Solutions, IDC
  • Guy Kawasaki, Co-Founder of Alltop and author of the newly released book, Enchantment
  • Moderated by Barbara French, co-founder of Think Influence.

Attend the event in person at the BrightTALK offices in San Francisco and pose questions throughout the panel - register at

Or, attend remote via the live interactive webcast & tweet your questions/comments - register at

When: Thursday, March 17
Registration / doors open: 7:15am
Roundtable: 8:00am - 8:45am
Networking Breakfast: 8:45am - 10:00am

“Influencers to Advocates”
Social media has enabled business professionals to quickly grow large spheres of influence in targeted industries. These power users hold the key for marketers trying to gain access to their niche audiences. The question is how to identify who the key B2B influencers are, how to rise above the noise to capture their attention, and how to encourage them to become advocates for your brand. Hear from these influencers themselves as they present live from the BrightTALK San Francisco office sharing what attracts them and learn how you can influence the influencer to become a brand advocate.


We wish to thank BrightTALK, graciously co-producing and videocasting this event. Interested in sponsoring? Contact me.

Not yet a member? Join Think Influence on LinkedIn.

Popularity: 67%

Influencer marketing is progressing from too much hype and trial-by-fire programs to sensible strategies and accepted best practices. There’s no better time than today to re-fresh your thinking about influence — what it is, who has it, what roles it can play in business. I’ll be discussing these topics at next week’s Bay Area Executives Meetup in Mountain View, CA, along with moderator R Ray Wang of Altimeter Group and my co-panelists Michael Brito of Edelman Digital, Ali McCourt of Intuit and Tony Welch of HP. Special thanks to Tatyana Kanzavel for organizing the event and panel!

Register for the Bay Area Executives Meetup: Super Panel on Influence

“The Many Facets Of Influence: How to Outreach, Engage, and Build Trust with Key Stakeholders”

An interactive panel with R Ray Wang, Michael Brito, Barbara French, Ali McCourt & Tony Welch

Tuesday, August 24th
Networking 6:30 - 7:00 PM
Panel 7:00 - 8:30 PM
Location: Samovar Conference Hall, Mountain View, Calif.
Event hashtag: #baexec

The panel will provide perspectives on these critical questions about influence:
1.  What is influence? and how do we align it with business value?
2.  The myths vs. realities of influence
3.  Key success factors of influence
4.  Identifying influencers: who and why?

Space is limited. Tickets are $20 in advance, $30 at the door and include gourmet food and wine. Register now to get on the waiting list and (hopefully) get confirmed!

Bring your questions, join the conversation, and engage!

Popularity: 41%

Influencer marketing entails many aspects of public relations. Along these lines, CloudNine PR agency is sharing results of its bespoke study of how 300 IT chiefs in the UK prefer to access news and info about the IT industry. I’m quite surprised by 4 findings in particular: LinkedIn ties with vendor emails as a useful or very useful source for 31%; and Twitter and YouTube are on close to even footing as well for about 20%.

What methods do UK IT chiefs find ‘useful’ or ‘very useful’ for keeping up-to-date on IT industry developments, including general news from vendors? Here’s CloudNine PR’s take:


  1. Online publications 64%
  2. IT blogs 52%
  3. Trade shows 50%
  4. Printed publications 47%
  5. Vendor Events 44%
  6. IT Analyst blogs 40%
  7. IT analyst events 38%
  8. Vendor emails 31%, LinkedIn 31%
  9. Twitter 20%
  10. YouTube 19%
  11. Facebook 13%
  12. SlideShare 12%

About the study: CloudNine PR commissioned Vanson Bourne to conduct the survey. It consisted of a poll of IT decisionmakers, including CIOs, IT directors and IT managers in 300 UK companies. The sample included organisations with 50 to 250 employees, 251 to 1000 employees and over 1000 employees. There was an approximately equal split of companies operating in Financial services; Manufacturing; Retail, Transport and Distribution; and Business and Professional Services.

Popularity: 16%

NewComm Forum is a social media and influencer marketing event I always make a point of attending. This year, I’ll attend on Weds April 21st. Per my earlier post at Tekrati, I’m pleased to give you discount codes for both the 1-day package and full conference.

Let me know if you’ll be there on the 21st. I’d love to meet you in person.

The NewComm Forum 2010 One-day Pass
Wednesday, April 21st
San Mateo, Calif.
Cost: $395, when you register and use discount code NCF1D

  • Full Access Pass for the 21st
  • 3 Keynote Sessions: Jackie Huba, online marketing expert and author; Dave Carroll, singer/songwriter, “United Breaks Guitars”; and Tim Westergren, founder, chief strategist, Pandora
  • Access to all conference sessions – choose from 16 breakout sessions in five tracks
  • Networking Activities and Food & Beverage Events

If you’d like to attend the entire event, use discount code NCF300 to save $300 off the full conference fee. Or, contact me directly for a slightly deeper discount.

One bit of advice: Be a focused networker to get the most out of this event. It’s a small event. Put yourself forward and you’ll easily go from merely rubbing elbows with top social media authors and practitioners to forging relationships with them.

You may wonder what draws me to an event like this, when I have free passes to industry analyst events around the planet. Here’s the thing: I always come away from NewComm Forum with new ideas and new relationships that contribute directly to my own thought leadership, services and strategies. Check this year’s agenda to see who’s of interest to you.

See you there!

Popularity: 6%

I’m pleased to invite you to the open house celebration for LectureMaker, Silicon Valley’s first high-definition streaming video studio. This special event takes place Wednesday, March 24th from 5:30pm to 8:00 pm in Sunnyvale. If you’re interested in creating, posting, or live streaming hi-def video content at affordable costs, you owe it to yourself to attend this grand opening party. Among the perks for attending: you can make your own greenscreen videos and greenscreen portrait photos during the celebration! Free! How cool is that?

Ron Fredericks, founder and videographer, has built an advanced high-def video studio worthy of Silicon Valley. He is pricing LectureMaker services to fit the budgets of startups, authors, consultants, analysts, marketing and PR agencies, and corporate marketing departments.

Join me Wednesday evening to tour the studio, make your own hi-def video clips, and get greenscreen portraits you can use with any background to spruce up your social media profiles. You can witness the ribbon cutting ceremony with the Mayor of Sunnyvale, and enjoy live music, drinks and food. Perhaps wander through an astonishing collection of movie sets and props.

Register at Eventbrite:

Again, the details:

Host: Ron Fredericks, LectureMaker
When: Weds, March 24, 5:30pm - 8:00pm
Where: 830 Stewart Drive, Sunnyvale CA, 94085
What: Ribbon cutting ceremony with Sunnyvale’s Mayor

You’ll see the creative video, audio and photo possibilities that are now easily within your reach. Even if you’re a solo practitioner like me.

See you there!

Popularity: 4%

IDC logoJay Andersen was in touch to remind me that IDC, Hill & Knowlton and the IIAR will host a luncheon meeting for analyst relations professionals at next week’s IDC Directions 2010 in San Jose, Calif.

Advanced registration is required. If you’re involved in analyst relations, at an agency or vendor, you can register for the meeting. Likewise, if you’re between AR-focused jobs, you can register. You’ll also get complimentary access to the full-day IDC conference.

Request your invitation via an email to Peggy O’Neill at More at IIAR blog.

Big thanks to IDC, the analyst relations practice at H&K, and the IIAR for their generosity in arranging the private luncheon and the free access to the Directions 2010 conference.

Hyatt Regency - attached to Santa Clara Convention Center
Cypress Room
March 10, 2010
12:15 PM - 1:15 PM

12:15PM - 12:30 PM
Crawford Del Prete, Executive Vice President of Worldwide Research, IDC, will provide an overview and highlight the details of IDC’s end user IT research strategy. His presentation will include an update on IDC’s Insights organization, IDC’s MarketScape assessment tool, and the ground breaking IDC Insights Community.

12:30 PM - 1:05 PM
Joshua Reynolds, Senior Vice President, Hill & Knowlton’s global tech practice lead, will present key findings from H&K’s 2009 tech decision maker’s study, the latest insights on the impact of AR on IR and corporate valuation, and the evolving role of AR professionals as they take on Influencer Relations roles in the new social media era.

1:05 PM - 1:15 PM
Peggy O’Neill, Board Member IIAR, will provide a brief update of IIAR initiatives and discuss the benefits of IIAR membership.

Popularity: 10%

Barbara on April 5th, 2009

iabcworldconference2009Don’t miss Nick’s session at the upcoming IABC 2009 World Conference. This year, the IABC expects to host 1,600 communication practitioners from 40 countries for this event. Four days of learning, camaraderie and inspiration right here in San Francisco.

Details on Nick’s session:

T3 / Influencer marketing and the rise of decision maker ecosystems

Date: Tuesday, 9 June
Time: 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Track: Strategy & Counsel

The way large-scale business purchases are made has changed. Company structure, corporate governance, the Internet and numerous other factors have led to the rise of decision-maker ecosystems‚ networks of individuals whose opinions shape the eventual purchase decision. These ecosystems play a major role in the success of every sales force, thus marketers need to consider communication strategies that include them.

What you’ll learn:

  • How and why purchase decision making has changed
  • Types of influencers who make up most decision-maker ecosystems
  • How different influencers impact decision-makers

Register by 1 May to receive the lowest conference rate. Plus, you can discuss the event at the special IABC blog InSession and follow on Twitter using hash tag #IABC09.

Popularity: 4%

Barbara on March 9th, 2009

idcdirections20091I attended last week’s IDC Directions09 conference in San Jose, courtesy of IDC in light of my role as an industry analyst watcher and blogger. It was one of the best that I can remember, and I’ve been to a few over the years. The theme, content and speakers were good — but that’s not why I’m giving it 2 thumbs up.

For me, the highest value was professional networking. To a great extent, I credit the relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. That’s not easy to achieve with an audience of 1,000+. The hallway conversations were non-stop. Analyst 1-on-1s were a central attraction, yet there wasn’t hustle for the sake of hustle — no people-to-see-places-to-go pretensions in the air. You could pick out — and get to — faces in the crowd with ease, yet the crowd was large enough to fill the space, even during Nicholas Carr’s closing keynote.

I can’t stress enough the importance of this aspect of any analyst conference for this year and beyond. None of us — well, few of us here in San Jose — see ourselves as Mohammed going to the mountain when we attend these analyst conferences.

Today, we don’t go to these events just to hear analysts present. We don’t want to play powerpoint roulette with our brains. This is an attention economy. We go to mingle with analysts, look them in the eye and take the measure of their company. We go to meet and have intelligent conversations with other attendees. We go to become better informed, and therefore more powerful influencers in our own right. And if there’s some juicy industry gossip sprinkled in, all the better.

IDC understands that.

I’ll be posting more about the event over the next day. Meanwhile, if you can, attend IDC Directions 2009 in Boston next week. Or, catch it in Singapore, India, China, Japan, Australia or New Zealand.

Popularity: 2%

Lincoln Memorial Welcome Event construction by Presidential Inaugural Committee, on FlickrSome events are so saturated with powerful people discussing powerful ideas that they gain the stature of an uber influencer in their own right. Two of these rare events take place in the western U.S. in the early months of each year: TED and South by Southwest. This year, a 3rd event joins their ranks — and jostles right to the top of the pack. That’s the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th president of the United States.

This is one presidential inauguration that will carry influence far beyond the Beltway. It will be the Woodstock of American politics, the American answer to the fall of the Berlin Wall.

The inauguration celebration, like the man himself, is destined to be a powerful influence. Those who are able to leverage inaugural speaker platforms will reap the benefits for a long time.

What catapults an event like this inauguration, TED or SXSW to the stature of super-influence?

First and foremost is the quality of the event as a speaker platform. That includes the complete speaker line-up and the focus and context of the agenda. It also includes the composition — and disposition — of the audience.

Then there’s the experience of being at the event. The experience exists only in the minds of the actual participants — organizers, staff, performers, audience, media. They in turn stream their experience to people who weren’t there through word of mouth, user-generated content, and paid media coverage.

In the tech industry, we’ve grown accustomed to the rippling influence of TED and SXSW. This year will be a little different. TED 2009 and SXSW 2009 participants will feel the rippling influence of a historic presidential inauguration. I look forward to participants at each event interpreting it, amplifying it and passing it along.

Popularity: 2%

Barbara on September 23rd, 2008

Vinnie Mirchandani is one the enterprise IT influencers not attending Oracle OpenWorld in the flesh this year. Instead, he’s plugging into event content and buzz through the new “Oracle OpenWorld 2008 Influencer Community.” Smart move by Oracle.

Oracle invited media and bloggers alike to join this event-specific influencer community. That means bloggers don’t need to request access from different marketing groups or provide different kinds of information. There’s just one place/process for joining, whether you are a journalist, blogger-journalist, blogger-analyst, blogger-consultant, blogger-pundit, etc.

This is not to say that Oracle marketing, sales and support departments no longer quibble over how to classify specific bloggers. Silos are a fact of life in most marketing departments. It’s just that in this instance, the silo mechanics are hidden neatly behind the curtain.

Big step in the right direction.

Popularity: 2%