With less than a month to go until Cisco Live 2012 in San Diego, we’re learning more and more about the festivities every day. From the closing keynote speakers to the Customer Appreciation Event (CAE) band, it’s shaping up to be a very exciting event. One area that I’m particularly excited to learn more about is the social side of things. Last year was the best Cisco Live event I’ve ever attended, due in large part to all the people that I interacted with from Twitter and other social media sites. We spent so much time hanging out together outside the registration desk that our group of tables was nicknamed “Tom’s Corner”. I still blush a little bit when I think of that moniker. It was wonderful having a place for everyone to come and sit down for a bit and just hang out or discuss sessions or speakers. Even if we did have to fight for table space or chairs from time to time, I feel that having a place set aside for everyone to meet is a wonderful idea. For Cisco Live 2012, the great folks at Cisco that are behind social media realize that too. That leads to a couple of exciting new opportunities this year.
Social Media Lounge
The first thing that I’m excited about is a specific area set aside in the World of Solutions (WoS) for social media! I always hear about “blogger lounges” and other such places at other vendor events or trade shows. Cisco must have heard about them too, because we’re going to have our own spot at Cisco Live. Much like the NetVet Lounge or the Cisco Certified Lounge, social media will finally have a hangout to call our own. Based on some information that I’ve seen, it’s going to be a nice place to congregate and relax. Couches galore, TVs all around, and even perhaps some entertainment options like an XBox or two. This will also be the place where Cisco’s social media team will likely be hanging out as well, so if you want to interact with them then this is the place to be. I’m already planning on moving myself in the second the WoS opens up. I wonder if they’ll let me hang a banner…?
Since last year’s CAE Tweetup was such a rousing success, there’s going to be another one this year. I’m excited for all the same reasons that I’m thrilled about the social media lounge. The CAE Tweetup is going to be even better though. I’ll give you a hint why:
That’s where we’re going to be! Originally, the Western Metal Supply Company building was going to be torn down when Petco Park was being built in 2004. Since it was such a historic piece of San Diego, the park designers found a way to incorporate it into the actual architecture of the park. The Western Metal Building has now been converted into a section of luxury suites with balconies and even a viewing terrace on the roof. During the CAE, one of those suites will house the Tweetup. It’s going to be a great time for sure. I’ll post more info about the CAE once my Cisco Live moles feed me more information.
Since the WoS (and social media lounge) will only be open from Monday evening to Thursday afternoon, there’s been discussion of what to do about meeting up with people around those hours. It’s always great to get in and hang out with everyone on the first day, especially since many of us don’t get to see each other unless we run into one another at Cisco Live. Since I’m arriving around lunchtime on Sunday, June 10, I was talking to the Cisco Live folks about having an impromptu tweetup that afternoon, say around 3 p.m. or so. The event schedule for Sunday looks fairly light, so having a tweetup around that time would give us all a chance to stop by and say hello before wandering off to parts unknown. There’s still not a firm place nailed down for the meeting, so once again I’ll be relying on my Bothan spies to get me the information as soon as possible.
Another idea being kicked around is a farewell tweetup sometime on Thursday. The closing keynote runs from 2:00 to 3:00, but afterwards there are going to be many people that either don’t have sessions or just want to hang out one last time. What would be a good time to have this last Twitter party of Cisco Live? Last year we all hung out at Tom’s Corner until they came and took our tables away before heading off to dinner. This year, I was thinking we could use the final meetup to take an awesome picture next to the Cisco Live sign like this one from last year:
There were a few folks that couldn’t make it to the photo session last year for various reasons. This year, I figured it we got it all planned ahead of time no one would be left out. If you have any good ideas for the Thursday tweetup, either time or location, leave me a comment. I’ll be sure to forward it on to the Cisco Live folks and make your voice heard.
Social media is a wonderful and powerful thing. As you can see, Cisco is putting a lot of extra effort into social media and its participants this year. From having our own lounge in the WoS to having a luxury box at the CAE, there’s no denying that it’s going to be a great time. If you haven’t already, make sure you’re on the Cisco Live 2012 Twitter List. That way, we can all link up easier and put names and faces to Twitter handles. You should also log into your Cisco Live account and be sure your Twitter handle is there so it can be printed on your badge. Let’s face it, most of us are more familiar by our handles and avatars than we are by our given names. Hopefully, that will change with all the amazing opportunities that Cisco has given us to hang out together at Cisco Live 2012. I can’t wait!