These people are your Yoda.
I asked Tennessean Multimedia Producer Karen Kraft to describe the BarCamp crowd and she thought of Star Wars.
The software developers, marketers, copywriters, and designers who produce and attend Nashville’s annual technology un-conference can build things, fix things and promote things.
But more importantly – they will inspire you, your company’s executives, and your employees.
“I feel like such a slacker when I come out of those groups,” Karen said. “Like, damn, all this stuff is out there and I never knew about it.”
Karen works for me, and here’s one thing I make sure she does know about – BarCamp.
This will be the fourth year The Tennessean has sponsored the day-long, free conference at Cadillac Ranch. In addition to employee training in all manner of digital development, content and marketing, here are four more reasons your company should do the same:
- Sponsoring BarCamp is a chance to engage with Nashville’s most digitally engaged people. BarCampers are heavy bloggers, tweeters, Facebookers, YouTubers and Ustreamers. They are digital influencers who connect in real life, who collaborate year-round on projects that make Nashville a better city. Every organization they touch touches vastly more organizations than those they don’t.
- You are in good company when your company sponsors BarCamp. Gone are the days when companies should demand sole sponsorship of events. We all have something different to offer; or we should if we know who our audience and what our mission is. Why not collaborate, even with those who compete with us on some levels, to showcase our individual expertise and niche strengths? We love seeing The Tennessean’s name next to well respected local brands like Centresource, Emma and the Nashville Chamber of Commerce.
- BarCamp is a fantastic place to expand your network and grow existing relationships. You’ll learn what other companies are doing from the various sessions. If you’re chosen as a speaker, others will learn what yours is up to. Not speaking? No worries. Some of the best conversations happen around the bar. Shocking, right?
- It’s a great place to steal people. I’ve attempted to steal my share of other companies’ employees during BarCamp sessions and post-camp follow-ups. I have no doubt my colleagues have done the same. Think of it as a live, real-time LinkedIn. If your company’s name is listed as a sponsor, you’ve got an edge as a recruiter among folks who’d prefer to work for someone who understands the value of this community.
Knight Stivender’s teams direct digital development, content and marketing for The Tennessean. To see what else inspires her, check out her personal blog at www.knightstivender.com.