Great energy and focus along with plenty of very smart and serious people made for a fun and electrically charged atmosphere. Product demos and discussion panels with generous portions of schmoozing. Clearly the social media market has gained serious momentum.
Yet something was missing.
So many companies were not in attendance. And I don't think we really ever heard from non-industry-participant bloggers. The little guy (or gal). Sure we can read what they think if they're writing about it in their blogs, but that's not quite the same thing as being able to hear from them on panels with face-to-face Q&A. Businesses do need customers, after all.
And where were the researchers and analysts with their facts, figures, piercing analyses, pie-charts, market segmentation tables and the always popular forecasts of future revenue and "installed base" growth? Seriously. There was none of this at all. Nada. Zilch.
This was a conference about "The Business of Social Media". Business is all about metrics, markets and meaty and actionable facts, but BlogOn was all about very generalized theory, observation and speculation.
Again, this is not to say that it wasn't fascinating and worthwhile - it was - but just to offer up some candid suggestions for improvement. Positive vibration!
Hey, here's a list of the books on sale outside the auditorium:
Cluetrain Manifesto by Christopher Locke, et al
Essential Blogging by Shelley Powers, Cory Doctorow, et al
Six Degrees by Duncan J. Watts
Free Culture by Lawrence Lessig
We The Media by Dan Gilmor
Linked by Albert-Laszlo Barabasi
Smart Mobs by Howard Rheingold
Creating Customer Evangelists by Ben McConnell, et al