Attending the Following Conferences this Fall: JIQ 2010, IYP Searchmeet, Local Social Summit, ILM:10

Busy Fall season as always. Here is the list of conferences / events I’m attending or speaking to in the next two months:

1- Journée de l’informatique du Québec, November 10 in Quebec City, Qc, Canada

I will be in Quebec City to present my social media for SMEs 101 presentation titled “Le Web social, c’est pas obligé d’être compliqué!”. Agenda is here and you can register here.

2- IYP Searchmeet, November 16 and 17 in London, UK.

Organized by Stephanie Lemieux from Yellow Pages Group (Canada), it’s a great opportunity to discuss Yellow Pages-centric challenges related to search, data/content and taxonomy. Those topics are very actionable and are usually not covered in industry events. Colleagues from various directory companies will attend and includes representatives from Yell, Herold, Sensis, European Directories, Truvo, PagesJaunes Groupe (France), Yellow Pages Group (Canada), Mueller Medien, Seat Pagine Gialle, Eniro, and more. I’m keynoting the first day on the topic of “Opportunities with Real-time Local Search and Content. Industry rockstar Greg Sterling will also keynote on the second day. You can see the agenda here. You need to pre-register here before Friday this week. Event will be very affordable, tickets will be less than 100 GBP and include breakfast & lunch.

3- Local Social Summit, November 18 in London, UK.

Organized by Simon Baptist and Dylan Fuller, this will be the second edition of the event. The first one last year was a resounding success. The idea is to devote one day to hear presentations and panels talk about the intersection of local and social, something that’s very close to my professional heart obviously. I’m also keynoting this event with a presentation titled “What, Where and now When? Time and Local Search”. Greg Sterling will also be present along with Perry Evans, CEO of Closely (and a great friend!). Complete agenda can be found here and you can register here for 125 GBP.

Altogether, two very interesting events over three days in London in about one month. It’s a must-attend. Greg Sterling just wrote about these two events on his blog.

4- ILM:10 (Interactive Local Media) conference, December 7 to December 9 in Santa Clara, California, USA.

Organized by BIA/Kelsey, this is a must-attend event for anyone that works and/or is interested in “local” in North America. The speakers list looks extremely promising. You can see the complete agenda here and register here.

Don’t hesitate to ping me if you’d like to meet/chat at any of these events: sprovencher AT needium.com

On a related note, Sylvain Carle (Praized Media’s co-founder and CTO) will be demoing Needium at the BizTechDay conference in San Francisco this Saturday October 23rd. Needium was handpicked as one of the 20 companies allocated a demo slot during the day. You can read more on the Praized Media product blog.

Upcoming Tech Startup Entrepreneurs Mentoring Event (Montreal)

There’s a new grassroot technology event in Montreal called “Tap in Tuesday“. Its goal is to have regular monthly mentoring events for startup entrepreneurs (aspiring and existing).

I’ve been chosen as the first “mentor” and I will be sharing advice and answering all types of questions about the fun life of a funded startup entrepreneur.

If you want to attend, you need to reserve your spot by emailing Gabriel Sundaram at tapintuesday@gmail.com

It’s happening this coming Tuesday August 10th at Café Des Éclusiers, 400 Rue De La Commune Ouest, Montreal at 6PM

More info on Montreal Tech Watch.

Les médias sociaux: ne ratez pas l'occasion! – La vidéo de ma présentation à la conférence Boule de Cristal du CRIM

(see English translation below)

Le 8 avril dernier, je présentais “Les médias sociaux: ne ratez pas l’occasion !” devant plusieurs centaines de personnes présentes à la conférence Boule de Cristal du CRIM. Ma participation à cette conférence était décrite comme suit:

Les médias sociaux numériques tels que Facebook, Twitter et les blogues bouleversent le Web. En effet, plus de 80 % des internautes canadiens visitent régulièrement un de ces sites et une grande proportion y participe activement. Plus qu’un phénomène passager, il s’agit de l’apparition d’un puissant média de bouche à oreille qui amplifie les commentaires des usagers Web. Quelles sont les meilleures pratiques pour les entreprises ? Y a-t-il des opportunités d’affaires intéressantes ? Sébastien Provencher, spécialiste des médias sociaux, partagera sa vision du Web social dans le futur du monde des affaires et ses conseils pour ne pas rater le bateau.

J’offre dans cette présentation des conseils stratégiques et des tactiques détaillées pour l’utilisation des divers médias sociaux (Facebook, Twitter, blogues, etc.) dans le contexte d’une entreprise. Voici la vidéo de 27 minutes sur SlideShare. Vous pouvez suivre cette présentation vidéo avec le document de présentatique ici. Ce billet est aussi une excellente occasion de vous rappeler que je suis disponible pour des mandats de consultation et pour donner des conférences et formations. Vous pouvez me rejoindre ici.

Sebastien Provencher Conférence Boule de Cristal CRIM avril 2010

Sebastien Provencher Boule de Cristal CRIM avril 2010

Last April, I presented “Les médias sociaux: ne ratez pas l’occasion !” in front of hundreds of attendees of the CRIM’s Crystal Ball Conference. Loosely translated as “Social Media: don’t miss the opportunity!”, I offered strategic and tactical advice to companies wanting to start leveraging social media in a business context. You can watch the 27-minute video presentation (in French) and/or follow with the actual document as well.

Getting to the Next Stage: Praized Media Hires Siemer & Associates to Find Strategic Partner

One of the first things you learn when you launch your own startup is to actively monitor opportunities in the market and move quickly to leverage them. In my case, it happened three times in the last three years.

The first strategic move happened back in the fall of 2006 when Sylvain Carle, Harry Wakefield and I founded Praized Media to help local media companies leverage the rising force of social media and online word-of-mouth. I also started blogging about what I call “local 2.0,” the intersection of local search and social media. At the time, most people believed that this convergence would not happen. Three years later, it’s one of the hottest sectors.

We made the second key move in fall 2008. Having launched our first social local tools (for WordPress, Movable Type, Facebook and our hub site) a couple of months before, we were approached by a few major media players who signaled to us they would be interested in using the technology we had built within their own online platform. This gave us the confidence to develop white-label enterprise versions of our social local media software, which has been in the market since spring 2009. Building on the popularity of our initial module, we developed many more enterprise modules described here.

The third strategic move is happening now. Last fall (what is it with fall???), we were approached by two US investment banks who aspired to represent us if we ever wanted to find a strategic partner for Praized Media. A few companies also hinted to us that they might be interested in investing in or acquiring Praized Media. Based on that enthusiasm, Sylvain and I (along with our board) discussed the pros and cons of going to the altar with a strategic partner vs. continuing alone.

The market is super-hot for technologies like ours. In the last three months, there has been a flurry of acquisitions and funding events in the “social local” space (we’ve created a document listing them if you’re interested). We could go on the road and raise new VC money to fuel our growth, but anyone that has raised those kinds of funds before knows that this is a brutal process, even when your market is hot. It takes a lot of time and energy, and for small companies, the process forces you to take your eyes off the product/company development roadmap. At the core, Sylvain and I are product/technology guys and that’s what we want to do. In the last two years, we’ve built world-class real-time social local search technologies. We’ve assembled a five-star (pun intended) social local technology development team. We’re notable thought-leaders in our space.

The future of local media will be centered on Aggregation / Discovery / Social / Search and our technology stack enables that. We believe what we’ve built (team and technology) represents the cornerstone of the next-generation local media company (traditional or pure play), and we want to focus on building that vision with a larger organization.

For all those reasons, we have decided to hire [praized subtype=”small” pid=”858569eeccb433824aca7193236f55ce” type=”badge” dynamic=”true”], an investment banking firm in Los Angeles that specializes in digital media, to represent us in our search for a strategic partner. We’re obviously supported a 100% in this decision by our board and the whole team is excited by this new move. For our current customers, collaborators and service providers, it is business as usual as this does not impact our day-to-day operations (actually, it frees up more time!). Given current market conditions, we are extremely confident we will find the right strategic partner.

If you’re interested in discussing more the opportunity, you can contact Siemer & Associates at (310) 496-4510 or info@siemer.com.

Nominated for a 2010 SEMMY Award!

2010 SEMMY Nominee 

I’m ecstatic! I just learned that I’ve been nominated for a SEMMY award in the “Local Search” category for my I Have Seen the Future of Local Media blog post. 

From the web site, “The SEMMYS are an annual awards event started in 2008 to honor the great content produced across the search and online marketing industry.” They reward “the year’s best post in search engine marketing”.

I’ve very happy to be nominated alongside industry luminaries like Chris Silver Smith, Matt McGee, Steve Espinosa, Bill Slawski, David Mihm, Gregg Stewart, Mike Blumenthal, Andrew Shotland and Greg Sterling (amongst others).

Public voting on the finalists is just around the corner and I’ll let you know when it’s happening.

In Paris for LeWeb '09 / À Paris Pour La Conférence LeWeb '09

Paris December 2009 Metro Sign

I’m now in Paris for LeWeb ’09 conference where I’ve been invited as an official blogger. 2000 people are attending the event! My schedule is quickly filling up but if you’d like to meet when I’m here, feel free to send me an e-mail at sprovencher AT praizedmedia.com

Paris December 2009 Arc de Triomphe

Je suis présentement à Paris pour la conférence LeWeb ’09 où j’ai été invité comme blogueur officiel. Si vous désirez me rencontrer cette semaine, n’hésitez pas à m’envoyer un courriel à sprovencher Arobas praizedmedia.com