What a Hoot!

What a Hoot!

If you were fortunate enough to have attended the DL Business Expo and #DLExpoHootUp event at the end of last month, I’m sure you’ll agree that it was a roaring success.  This free event attracted hundreds of visitors and more than 50 local exhibitors through the doors at the Northern Echo Arena in Darlington.  We were fortunate to have some noteworthy local, national and international speakers and a couple of extra special guests of the feathered variety (keep reading to find out!).

If you weren’t able to get there, here’s a brief snapshot of the highlights you missed.

Keynote Speaker: Dan Spicer, Head of Hootsuite EMEA Community Team

We were honoured to have Dan as our keynote speaker at the DL Expo and the DLExpoHootUp After-Party where he very kindly gave two presentations.  The key focus of Dan’s presentations centred on the evolvement of social media over the past few years, how crucial it is to embrace it and the significant results that can be gleaned from a successful social media campaign.

Dan also highlighted the potential risks for companies who don’t use social media in their marketing mix, and backed this up with some real eye-opening examples. In addition, Dan shared his ideas on social media relationships and how it’s important to build up relationships founded on trust so that the sales cycle will evolve naturally and be more inclined to last long-term.  We also had a Q+A session at the end of the presentation where Dan shared lots of insider tips for the audience to take away and implement into their own social media strategies.

Our Associate Speakers also gave us an abundance of valuable advice, food for thought and insights into their areas of expertise.

James Lane, Hootsuite Ambassador EMEA (Volunteer), gave a presentation on SEO: Mobile-Friendly. With mobile-friendliness now having a big impact on search engine rankings, this was a much welcomed insight into Google’s latest shake-up.

Nevil Tynemouth is a LinkedIn Specialist, Coach and Author of Sales Success on LinkedIn. Nevil’s presentation focussed on building trust on LinkedIn and he shared lots of his vast LinkedIn knowledge too.

Graeme Rowatt, award-winning commercial photographer, and, of course, Chairman of Darlington Business Club, shared his invaluable tips and advice for using photos and images on social media.

Julie Donaldson, Voiceover Artist and Blogger, spoke about The Art of Blogging and gave everyone an abundance of actionable tips to take home with them.

And last but not least… we also had some extra special (feathered) guests.

As well as a great line-up of speakers sharing their expertise on a vast range of subjects, we were also privileged to have Tori Goodall from Walworth Castle Birds of Prey at the event. Tori brought with her two spectacular (and very well-behaved) owls, Ted and Podge, who brought a whole new perspective to the event.

The question is are you #TeamTed or #TeamPodge?


All that’s left for me to say now is a big thank you to all our speakers, special guests, and of course, our army of visitors.  Make sure you watch out for details of future regional HootUps.


About the Post Author

Jayson Gurney, Managing Director of the Social Media Consultancy Limited. After leaving Her Majesty's Armed Services in 1993, Jayson embarked on an career in Information Technology which took me all over the UK and Europe.

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