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Social Media Portal interview with Matthew Yeomans from the Social Media Influence (SMI) conference

Tim Gibbon (Social Media Portal (SMP)) - 23 May 2013

SMP Q&A with Matthew Yeomans, co-founder of Social Media Influence

Profiled interview with Matthew Yeomans about the SMI13 conference next month

Hyperlink to Eighth Social Media Influence (SMI) 2013 logoSocial Media portal (SMP): What is your name and what do you do there at Social Media Influence (SMI)?

Matthew Yeomans (MY): Iím Matthew Yeomans, co-founder of Social Media Influence.

SMP: Briefly, tell us about SMI (for those that donít know), what is it and what does it do?

MY: SMI is an online publication and conference dedicated to providing intelligence on the ways social media is reshaping business.

SMP: Who are your target audience and why?

MY: FTSE 250 companies, agencies and consultancies that are adapting to the way their business is being influenced and affected by social media conversations, thinking and strategies.

SMP: Tell us about the Social Media Influence (SMI) Conference Ė when, where and who is it aimed at?

MY: The conference takes place on 13 June 2013 at the Cavendish Conference Centre in central London.  It is aimed at companies and agencies who want to understand how social media thinking shapes every part of business, whether it be recruitment, supply chain management, sales, marketing, customer service, sustainability or PR and corporate communications.

SMP: How did you initially attract delegates to your event, and has that changed now social media has grown?

MY: Our very first conference was called Blogging4Business back in 2006.  Back then social media was such a new concept that major media outlets like BBC News and Radio 4ís Today Programme wanted to cover this new business phenomenon.  Today, social media is big business in its own right and so our focus and content have become more sophisticated and deeper.  Weíve been around from the start of the social media revolution and hopefully that experience is reflected in the conference agenda we put together.

SMP: The SMI conference is a long-standing social conference.  How and why is it different to other social media events (and how much longer have SMI been running conferences in this space in comparison to your competitors)?

MY: At SMI we've long advocated that a social company is one that embraces social media as a way of thinking rather than a communication or marketing strategy.  With that in mind we've shaped SMI13 to reflect how companies see the full benefit of social when it flows throughout their organisations - when it becomes part of their DNA, you might say.

SMP: What do you hope attendees will take away from the conference and what do you think will be their highlights?  

MY: I hope our attendees will gain a deeper understanding of how social media thinking can connect and improve every part of a company or organisation, making it better prepared for the challenges all businesses face.

SMP: Is there an early bird discount and if so, when does it end?

MY: A discount of 50% is available for Social Media Influence 2013 through SMP using code SMI2013-50.

SMP:  What are the low moments of what you have been doing so far (and in regards to SMI and the SMI Conference)?

MY: Putting together a conference is always fraught with things that can go wrong.  Last year one of our keynote speakers cancelled just two days before the event.  That isnít going to happen this year!

SMP: What are the high moments of what you have been doing so far (and in regards to SMI and the SMI Conference)?

MY: Iím proud of the fact that SMI and the conference has always offered a prescient perspective of how the social media landscape is changing and evolving.  We were one of the first conferences to challenge the idea that social media was just a marketing or PR tactic and weíve been able to showcase a host of smart companies and agencies such as content marketing leader Vice/Virtue, Internet of Things pioneer Everything and social business leaders, Dachis Group.

SMP: What do you see as the biggest challenges and opportunities branPhotograph of Matthew Yeomans, co-founder of Social Media Influence (SMI) conference
ds face in terms of social media, and how does SMI Conference address these?

MY: The biggest challenge and biggest opportunity is the same thing: how to integrate a social media philosophy based around open networking, collaboration and connected systems throughout business operations.  Get that right and the entire company can benefit.

SMP: Whatís the next big step for social media / networks and what impact may this have upon brands?

: Social media already has demonstrated that brands need to be accountable to their communities and customers if they want to retain credibility and be successful.  The next stage will see companies and brands building sustainable operations based on an understanding that they have to be authentic and transparent if they are going to win over an increasingly ethical and demanding customer.

SMP: What was the most challenging part of building of SMIís presence in digital environments (including social media)?

MY: Cutting through the noise of so much social media chatter!

SMP: Whatís going to be the most interesting aspect regarding social media / technology for the next 12 to 18-months?

: Probably the growth in social media connected devicesÖ the so-called Internet of Things.

SMP: What are your top five predictions for social media for the next 12 to 18-months?

MY: I learned long ago never to make predictions when it comes to social media.  Though starting a new blogging platform in your mumís apartment might not be a bad bet.

SMP: What are your top five social media tips for brand in making the most of the channel?

MY: Three words: Listen, Learn, Converse.

SMP: Best way to contact you and SMI Conference?

Email matthew @


Twitter @socialinfluence


Now some questions for fun

SMP: What did you have for breakfast / lunch?

MY: Rice Crispies

SMP: Whatís the last good thing that you did for someone?

MY: Bought a pint.

SMP: If you werenít working on the SMI Conference what would you be doing?

MY: Writing my new kidís food adventure, The Gross Food Guide

SMP: When and where did you go on your last holiday?

MY: Italy last summer.

SMP: Whatís the first thing you do when you get into the office of a morning?

MY: Coffee and Twitter

SMP: If you had a superpower what would it be and why?

MY: The power to ensure Wales never lose at rugby ever again.

If you're interested in doing a Social Media Portal (SMP) interview, get in touch.

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