The Pivot Conference rose to the occasion

This year's Pivot Conference theme was "The rise of the social consumer" and they demonstrated, via an extremely well curated event by Brian Solis, that the social consumer has risen to a mature state, and is here to stay.

The 500-person conference in New York City was not about dropping names, and having the usual big-name speakers bounce around the stage. They brought in those who are doing the great work in social media, and know what they are doing.

A few standouts for me this year include 1). Shiv Singh, Global Head of Digital for PepsiCo who I have heard speak on several occasions, and am always impressed by his insight (and his ability to livestream Pepsi brand mentions throughout his talks <g>). 2). John Hayes (CMO of American Express) who demonstrated the sophistication of the AMEX company marketing organization, and their understanding of how to engage audiences, and to build a brand beyond its product offerings. 3). Kip Wetzel Senior Director of Social Media Service and Strategy at Comcast who showed us how customer service is the new marketing and 4). Jon Bond, CEO of Big Fuel (and legendary ad man who co-founded Kirshenbaum & Bond) who showed us that learning from our past experiences, while applying today's techniques keeps us old guys relevant, and valuable to the conversation.

I must give editorial director Brian Solis a big tip of my hat for a well curated event. Conversations, rather than moderated-panels and speakers at podiums ruled the day. It was nearly "PowerPoint Free" (yes, nearly), and those who used slides as crutches definitely stood out.

Nice work guys. I look forward to applying my learnings throughout the year, and attending next year's event.

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