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WordCamp Birmingham 2012: a preview

January 4, 2012

Sara Cannon, WordCamp Birmingham by Christopher Reding

Sara Cannon gives a presentation at WordCamp Birmingham 2010. She’s the organizer
behind the 2012 event.

Some quick thoughts on WordCamp Birmingham 2012 …

Why you should go: For anyone interested in networking in the blogging, development or design areas, WordCamps remain a great investment for meeting the right people who can help you with your digital business. Quite a few speakers are coming from Atlanta, so expect a sizable group of attendees from there as well.

It’s a good learning experience, though I personally skip most of the highly technical workshops. I’m pushing to see more content-side offerings beyond the beginner level, which is why I specifically developed an intermediate/advanced session. (More on that below.)

You don’t have to be a WordPress user to get value out of this conference. For those even thinking about switching to the platform, this event is a terrific opportunity to ask questions and even transition over at the WordPress Help Desk.

My session: It’s going to go quick. For me, 40 minutes is a really short time to present anything, simple or complex. You really have about 30 minutes tops if you allow for any questions at all.

That being said, you can hear me talk about “How to Win Awards and Influence Readers in 439 Days and 668 Posts,” a long-winded way of saying “Advanced Content Management and Marketing.”

The official description:

Birmingham’s Best Blogger Wade Kwon reveals the secrets to developing a content strategy. It’s a plan that took an unknown site from just another URL to the Best Website of 2011, according to readers of the Birmingham News.

This session is for intermediate and advanced users, business owners and publishers who want to not only blog more often, but more effectively and with a defined return on investment.

Content marketing isn’t the future. It’s now. And the sooner you develop a plan, the sooner you can slowly win over a dynamic, interactive, engaged audience.

Why I’m going: I want to meet you. I want to hear what you’re working on with your business, and where you’re struggling. If I can help, I will, or I’ll point you to someone who can.

Also, I have a strong sense of curiosity. I do like to hear what’s going on in the development community, and this gets me plugged in quickly. Plus, I enjoy supporting tech conferences in my hometown, and I’m proud that the Alabama Social Media Association is an official friend of the conference.

Nuts and bolts: The conference is all day Jan. 14 at the BJCC East Meeting Rooms and a half day on Jan. 15 at Samford University. Tickets for both days are $35, but enter code ALSOCME to get them for $29. (And oh my is it a pain to use the code — see the instructions buried in the registration page comments.)


Et cetera: WordCamp Birmingham speakers | schedule | sessions in detail

If you’re interested in doing a “lightning talk” (under 10 minutes), you can apply for a spot. Heck, if you want me to answer a quick question, leave a comment below and let me know what topic to (cough) strike.

It’s been 16 months since the last WordCamp Birmingham, but a surprisingly extra long 25 months since the last WordCamp Atlanta. Here’s a look at the speakers and sessions lined up for Feb. 3-4 at the SCAD campus. Tickets are $40.

Photo: Christopher Reding

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