Turning Online Into IRL: The Importance of Relationship Marketing & SM

October 19th, 2012   •   7 comments   


I had the honor of speaking at #SMatWork12 (hosted and promoted by the Harrisburg, PA Social Media Club) on the importance of using social media well in a crisis. My co-panelist, @DebWeinsten and I spent an hour or so sharing some of our tips and stories. As I reflect on the great content shared by fellow “crew” members (@GlenGilmore @MarkWSchaefer @AnneDGallaher @Alanbr82 @profS @ryansauers @DanChristPN @MarisaCorser) it struck me that I was there to see my friends as much as hear the content shared. While on the second leg of my flight I was surprised to see @MarkWSchaefer and we arranged to sit together (of course) from Charlotte to Harrisburg. On the flight Mark helped me think through a client issue and I may have the opportunity to bring Mark into a client project that could have huge potential. When I was listening to @GlenGilmore give his compliance and policy talk, I was struck by the power of our business relationship and how much work we have done together for clients. I am systematically trying to cultivate exciting and meaningful work for this fantastic “crew” and find ways to monetize our relationships. Together we are like a “virtual agency”–a powerhouse of professionals who have been successful in the traditional workforce now turned digital. This meeting in Harrisburg is at least the 3rd or 4th time we have all been together (probably more).

I was also humbled by the constant reference to how it all started at #BroganMemphis (3 years ago). We didn’t know each other well then (and Mark Schaefer tells the story in his new book, Return On Influence) but we do now! The value of the social media space is the PEOPLE you meet, the authentic relationships you form and the projects and opportunities that arise as a result. Thank you Anne Gallaher for asking me to speak, sponsoring the event and for the lovely Harrisburg hospitality! And thanks to my dear cousin, Patrick Tipton @PatrickBTipton for driving six hours to see me and to hear the speakers. Twitter will make you purchase plane tickets if you do it right and the ROI is definitely real.


  1. Amy, we are so thrilled you were able to join us and add your voice to ours. The content for the whole conference was simply mind-boggling. I think back to our humble roots and how we “congealed” on Twitter. I said it then and continue to be excited by it now: can’t wait to see what the future brings. Truly honored and humbled to among what I consider the greatest folks I know.

  2. Amy Howell says:

    Kathy: Thank you so much! High praise!

  3. I watched the tweets, pic’s and comments flow out of your event through twitter. I get what your saying. Maybe that is why I continue to be a slow burner in this social media process. I want IRL more than numbers.
    So, I will return here from time to time to let you know that I enjoy seeing you post pic’s in facebook, I check links you tweet on the the blue bird.

    Sincerely Billy

  4. Amy Howell says:

    Billy: That is too kind and thank you! Pictures are like magic–a picture truly can tell the story. Glad you are a social learner. Slow burner is great….I think the main thing is to try and learn more each day…There is so much I still do not know and so this is a journey, yes? I love the blue bird. Thanks for stopping to comment.

  5. deborah weinstein says:

    It was an honour and a pleasure to speak with you at #smatwork12. Amy, and to re-connect IRL w/ social friends and leaders. Loving our virtual best of the best agency and the constant, non-stop, generous sharing! Greetings and XO all!

  6. Amy Howell says:

    Deb: It’s always a pleasure to be on a program with you! Thanks for coming all the way from Canada and I hope to see you again soon! XO right back at ya!

  7. Matt Hannaford says:

    It was great to see all of you at #SMatWork12…it was even better to actually be a part of it. Meeting some of my greatest twitter influences is incredible and I’m so thankful to have met all of you during your time here in Harrisburg.

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