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Social Media Day Toronto #SMDay #SMDayTO – WHAT A NIGHT!

July 1, 2011 3 comments

Last night, as I have mentioned in previous posts was Social Media Day across the globe. I was once again in charge of organizing the event in Toronto. This year, I had the one and only Michael Nus aka @MichaelNus on Twitter co-organizing the event with me. The official Meetup.com page from Mashable showed that we had 384 people attending and Tattoo Rock Parlour did indeed get PACKED. In fact, we had the 5th largest meetup for Social Media Day in the world!

 

Thanks to Rebecca of Epilogger for making the awesome poster at the top of this page! I know how hard you worked on it via numerous discussions we had about it.

For a couple of other resources other than what I write here you can check out Epilogger‘s coverage of the event at this page (available for a limited time before the beta test begins) courtesy of Epilogger and see the whole story! There is also my co-organizer, Michael Nus’ blogs’ coverage of the event at http://www.michaelnus.com/socialmedia/social-media-day-toronto/.

We had special name badge sticker name tags from StickerYou (@StickerYou) which looked awesome, were made of vinyl, stuck well, and didn’t leave sticky crap all over our clothes – especially my nice sport jacket!

We were one of the only cities in the world that had Social Media Day recognized by our city, and as such were recognized in an article on Mashable.com here at http://mashable.com/2011/06/30/social-media-day-cities/. We got a letter from the Mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford, congratulating us on coming together on this special day.

We had 3 different speakers from such a variety of different outlooks it was great to hear and see. We had the social media “Lady Blogga” Casie Stewart (@CasieStewart) talk about building your personal brand.

We had Professor Robert Kozinets (@kozinets) chair of the marketing department at York University’s Schulich School of Business give us an academic look at the whole internet and how social media is rooted in the message boards of the 90s – Star Trek message boards were mentioned!

We had Michael O’Connor Clarke (@michaelocc) a man who builds and executes social media programs these days and joined his first social network in 1997, started blogging in 2001, joined Twitter at launch, and was one of the first 1,000 public users on LinkedIn took us into how to use of social media for business and how so many companies are doing it wrong with his hilarious look at the right and wrong way to use social media. We also had DJ Jeff Button (@DJJeffButton) play us some good networking music (he is also in the picture below with Michael O’Connor Clarke).

I wish I could give a better detailed description but I was so frazzled running around I didn’t have enough time to really listen.  One really great thing and at the same time not so great thing about the entire event was it was PACKED.

In fact, it was so packed that people who checked in on Foursquare earned the SWARM BADGE if they didn’t yet have it. I, myself, had 35 friends checked in on Foursquare with me last night. Is it a reasonable goal to shoot for the Super Swarm Badge (250 people) next year?

You might remember my post on planning a good event from earlier this year – well I tried to cover all of those. However, I once again learned A LOT. I learned that while each and every one of my tips held true, there is so much more that comes into play. I will take these new learnings and improve my next events – and probably write a blog post with more details of the new learnings at a later date as well.

Please be sure to let me know what you thought of the event and of any way I can make it better next time.

I cannot forget the amazing sponsors we had who made the event possible. After one of our initial sponsors backed out these awesome folks stepped in and were just amazing to deal with every step of the way. Thanks to Rogers Canada we had a free Galaxy Tab courtesy of the good folks at Canada’s reliable network – Rogers – to give away! A lucky guy named Somu Mondal @somumondal won it because we entered his name into the draw for engaging and asking a question of one of the speakers. Here he is below with his prize (picture courtesy of Shanta aka @TantienHime).

A huge thank you to every single one of our sponsors. I have listed them all below along with short blurbs taken from the Meetup.com event info page and I hope to work with all of them again soon. I cannot stress enough how grateful I am to them for agreeing to help us pull off this event and make it amazing.

I know this all sounds like BS and me just trying to promote the sponsors but it really isn’t and here’s why: One of our original sponsors – who reached out to us, by the way – said they were totally on board and excited to join in to make an awesome event. We made some arrangements based on the idea that we had this sponsorship and they promptly backed out at the first mention of an aspect not to their liking in regard to the event. This is why I am so truly thankful to every single one of our sponsors who I mentioned below and strongly encourage you to give their links a click or three. I don’t know if I am going to piss someone off by writing what I did above but I revealed no names for a reason and told the truth about the situation as I experienced it.

Without further ado here, listed below, are our awesomazing sponsors.

Rogers: 

We are really excited to announce that ROGERS (@RogersBuzz) played a huge role in sponsoring the awesome of Social Media Day Toronto 2011. A giant of Canadian Telecommunications Rogers has exploded in social media helping customers and giving advice across all platforms as well as their usual, traditional means which they, of course continue. Check em out at http://social.rogers.com/

INK Entertainment: 
INK ENTERTAINMENT (@INKevents) sponsored us and that is how we have the amazing venue of TATTOO ROCK PARLOUR (@TattooRock). Check em out at http://www.facebook.com/INKEntertainment and http://www.facebook.com/TattooRockParlourTO.

Specific huge thanks to Maria @mariapie Pielarska – for setting everything up and connecting us with the right people over at INK. You rock.

Toyota Canada: 
@ToyotaCanada wished everyone a happy Social Media Day! They invited everyone to come hang out with them on Facebook & Twitter and at Social Media Day, IRL (in real life). They’re easy to find, just add “/ToyotaCanada” and there they are – ready to connect with you. But don’t forget to use our favourite hashtag, #ToyotaLove. They also had these really awesome 2 GB USB Bracelets to give away to anyone who liked them on Facebook (and they had a computer there to do it!)

http://www.twitter.com/ToyotaCanada
http://www.facebook.com/ToyotaCanada

Saatchi & Saatchi Canada: 
At Saatchi, they’re in the business of building Lovemarks. Lovemarks are brands that inspire loyalty beyond reason. They think Canada is itself a #lovemark. On Canada Day they wanted to spread the #canadalove and got that virtual love going.
Like them on Facebook at /saatchicanada

http://www.Facebook.com/SaatchiCanada
http://www.Saatchi.ca/
http://www.Twitter.com/#!/SaatchiCanada

Popchips: 
POPCHIPS (@PopchipsTO) hooked us up with some deliciousness at the event, I am sure you all couldn’t wait to eat some of their amazing and healthy chips. We knew many of you love em so we brought them along for the ride! I was totally right about this too! Those things went so fast that I didn’t even get to have any!

Check em out at http://www.facebook.com/Popchips.

Putting Edge: 
Everyone’s favorite local mini-golf spot, PUTTING EDGE (@PuttingEdge) has thrown down with free rounds of putting action! Not only do they have awesome courses but they are all GLOW-IN-THE-DARK! The PAR-fect place for a date with that special someone, or some quality time with the entire family.
Check em out at http://www.facebook.com/PuttingEdge

#FreedomTO Was Amazing

May 23, 2011 4 comments

Last night, as I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I went to “Freedom” at The Guvernment nightclub. I had an absolutely amazing time there dancing the night away to the tunes being played by the one and only Armin van Buuren.

When I got to The Guvernment I went straight to Kool Haus where Blake Jarrell had just started his set. Although he played a pretty good set it wasn’t half as good, in my opinion, as when I saw him spin during Armin’s A State of Trance Episode 450 tour’s Toronto stop last year – which was also at The Guvernment. Then, at 1:30am, Armin arrived on the decks. He started with one of the fastest (hardest) openings I have ever heard him go into and from there it was just awesome track after awesome track completely blowing my mind. I danced the night away until the end of Armin’s encore at 5:30AM (he was scheduled to finish spinning at 4:30 but decided to stay, thankfully) and the crowd – me included – just wanted MORE!!!

Armin, in my opinion, is truly one of the greatest DJs in the world right now and I love it every time I see him. I can’t wait until he comes back to Toronto again. His set was positively transcendent.

I also want to say a humongous thank you to the folks at INK Entertainment, Maria @MariaPie Pielarska, and Brad @pshag Machry for hooking me up with the ticket to attend because without them my night at The Guvernment dancing my legs off would not have been possible. I always LOVE going there and have an amazing time every time I am there. If you live in Toronto and have yet to go to see a DJ spin at The Guvernment I am strongly encouraging you to get there ASAP. We are talking about one of the world’s greatest ‘superclubs’ and it is right in your own backyard if you live in the Greater Toronto Area. I also recommend that if you don’t already follow them on Twitter – @the_guvernment – or Facebook http://www.facebook.com/TheGuvernment then you should immediately because they are ALWAYS updating us with the latest scoop on what the best events in Toronto are coming up as well as CONSTANTLY doing giveaways for great DJs and great events via online presence. Beyond that, even if you can’t make it physically to the events the Guv’s online channels do a great job of providing you with live on the scene updates, pictures, and video of the events as they are happening so it is almost like you are there.

Below, check out a video from the end of his set when he played Going Wrong which is his own track made with DJ Shah and featuring Chris Jones. It is one of my favorite recent Armin tracks, that’s for sure, and it is also one of his most well known and “commercial” tracks. This is part of the reason I chose to video it – because even if you aren’t a big fan of trance or Armin there is a pretty good chance you have heard the song. Another reason I chose to video that part is because there was way, way less bass than the rest of the set so you are way more able to appreciate the music in the video – as a rule of thumb phone microphones and pounding bass beats don’t play nicely with each other.  I’ve also added a gallery below with a whole wack of pictures I took last night of the The Guvernment’s Kool Haus. What a night.

Gallery of photos:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Click the tiles below for the full resolution versions of each photo.

#FreedomTO at @The_Guvernment TONIGHT with @ArminvanBuuren! (Full Set Times Included)

May 22, 2011 1 comment

I am extremely excited to be going to this amazing event tonight. I have been a TranceAddict for quite a while – in fact, I have been a registered member of TranceAddict.com‘s forums with my current account since 2004 – I post on there as abort416.

I am actually extremely lucky to be going to #FreedomTO at @The_Guvernment because until last week I didn’t think I would go due to cash flow. Then, on Thursday last week my friend Brad aka @pshag asking if anyone of his tweeps were going to be coming out Sunday night to #FreedomTO at The Guvernment and I told him how much I wanted to be in attendance but didn’t know if I was going to be able to due to the aforementioned reason. Little did I know, that Brad was just recently given the opportunity to work for The Guvernment part time as an event social media presence. He will be there tonight starting at 9pm until midnight tweeting, checking in on Foursquare, and posting to Facebook all sort of pictures and videos of the event from the DJs and from the attendees. He somehow worked some amazingtastic magic and convinced Maria of @INKEvents to hook me up with a ticket!

I literally couldn’t even answer as I ran around my place jumping and whooping and w00ting in celebration. If I could do cartwheels I would have. Armin will be spinning in the Kool Haus from 1:30am -4:30am and I can’t wait to start bouncing around to some absolutely amazing trance. See below for full, official set times.

I hope you are having a great long weekend – if you are in Canada – and a great end to your weekend if you are anywhere else.

Official #FreedomTO Set List & Times Read more…

#BoobySushi At Ame Cuisine #Omnomnom

January 19, 2011 2 comments

~ Left F to B: @KarimAwad @JourneyDan @KonnywithaK @ValTorontoGal ~ Right F to B: Me, @ClickFlickCa @ElleRich @TrulyJess

As you may have read last night in my previous post I was on my way to a restaurant called Ame. Ame is a “modern Japanese restaurant” as it describes itself on its website. The main reason we went and that I organized this outing was because 5 of us got $50 gift coupons to Ame which were near their expiration date in our swag bags from the 2010 BoobyBall on October 16, 2010 at Kool Haus – which in of itself was an amazing time, check out@ValTorontoGal’s blog post about it with tons of pics here.

The eight of us Twitter folk gathered for some good food including myself, @TrulyJess (who actually gave me the ticket to the BoobyBall), @ElleRich, @KarimAwad, @JourneyDan, @KonnywithaK, @ValTorontoGal, and @ClickFlickCa. The way we termed the meal – as this was not intended to be a tweetup – was #BoobySushi which was a nod to the Japanese cuisine of Ame as well as where we got our gift certificates.

The decor and ambiance at Ame are amazing. The way the place is done up is absolutely beautiful – just going there is an experience in of itself as the building was, according to Ame’s website, “once home to the first women’s prison in Toronto” but you wouldn’t know it walking in there today.

The view of the dining area from our table. The chandeliers are "Japanese Dream Lamps" where you put a note with your wish.

But the decor alone didn’t prepare us for what we were going to experience during our meal. Honestly the food was absolutely superb. They told us when we ordered that every dish in the restaurant is intended to be shared amongst a group of people, that was good because we all wanted to try each other’s food! Everything we tried was delectable. I would like to say that I remember every single dish we had but I do not. What I do recall specifically is that our server Drew was the paragon of customer service. No one at Ame knew we were on Twitter or had any way of making our opinions known to the general public about the restaurant and still they treated us like royalty. Between myself @KarimAwad & @JourneyDan we ordered a 36 piece dish and Drew (or maybe it was the kitchen or Manager at Ame but I am going to give Drew the credit) brought out 48 pieces for us just because. Other things I remember we got was @ValTorontoGal’s squash tempura which was, for lack of a better superlative, OMG! As well, @ElleRich’s meat dish really taught me what the phrase ‘like butter’ means. It literally fell apart in my mouth.

I also tried sake for the first time.

The first sake I ever tried - Nigori Unfiltered Sake (we had it cold & drank 2 bottles)

At the end of our meal, Drew who had told us to save room for desert told us desert was on him! And then he brought out some awesometastic desert dishes (3 sets of 2) for our tables.

Desert is served! Thanks Drew! This is one set of 3

I also made sure to write a Dream/Wish to put in the lamp before I left and here’s what I wrote (I asked Drew, he said it wouldn’t ruin the wish if I told people…this is Japanese tradition not Western Birthday Wishes!)

The note I wrote for the Japanese Dream Lamp. I truly hope it all comes true!

Total bill for the evening with tax and an 18% gratuity added on: $550!!!

I know that Ame is open for 2011 Winterlicious and reservations have already opened so it might be too late but I really, really recommend you book a meal there. Here’s a link to their Winterlicious menu on Toronto.com.

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