Business to Business Panel Social Media Club Chicago Recap

For the 241 people who registered interest in attending SMC Chicago’s March event, business to business and social media is a hot topic.

It all comes down to listening. But, first you have to have the tools to tune in.

And, you have to go where your people are, which is most likely one or all of three places: LinkedIn, Facebook and twitter.

Then, you have to be there to answer.

Thanks to Allan Schoenberg and CME Group, our event sponsor, for giving us a space big enough to accommodate our crowd. All seats got snapped up within 11 hours after registration opened. I’m thinking it was mostly due the caliber of our panel presenters. Jeff Willinger, who is also on the SMC Chicago advisory team,  recruited these accomplished speakers.

Social Media and Business to Business Presenters

Allan Schoenberg, Director of Corporate Communications, CME Group
The director of corporate communications for CME Group – a CME/CBOT/NYMEX company, Allan manages a team that develops and executes global corporate communications for the exchanges, which includes issues management, media relations, crisis management, social media, message development, international initiatives, and broadcast/digital communications. Within an 18 month time frame, Allan worked closely with management and the communications team through two mergers (CBOT in July 2007; NYMEX in August 2008) worth a combined value of nearly $30 billion. Allan initiated the company’s social media strategy, which includes Facebook, Twitter and reaching out to influential bloggers. He is also a member of the exchange’s Enterprise Risk Management team, which identifies events or circumstances across functions, assesses them in terms of likelihood and magnitude of impact, determines a response strategy, and monitors progress. Allan is an adjunct faculty member at both Loyola University and DePaul University.

Ellis Booker, Editor, BtoB Magazine, Crain Communications
Ellis Booker is Editor of BtoB, the Magazine for Marketing Strategists. The only publication devoted exclusively to the intersection of business marketing and business strategy, BtoB is published monthly by Crain Communications Inc. and reaches an audience of more than 45,000 readers. In addition to the print edition, BtoB offers daily and weekly e-mail products and maintains a Web site at Booker is also editor of BtoB Media Business, the Magazine for Business Publishing Executives. In addition to the print edition, BtoB Media Business offers a weekly e-mail newsletter and the annual Top Innovators in Business Publishing Awards.

John Fairley, Director of Web Services and Social Media, Walker Sands Communications
John has more than 13 years of experience developing web sites for start-ups and small-to-medium-sized businesses, extensive SEO knowledge, and a passion for forwarding brands through social media. His influence was the key driver in the Walker Sands’ industry leading web development process based on five principles: design, business alignment, maintenance, SEO, and affordability. John also led the development of a proprietary search-optimized content management system for Walker Sands in October 2007.


Len Kendall, Media Manager, Critical Mass
Len Kendall is a Chicago native with a passion for technology, advertising, and art. Len started his career in advertising at The Exponent, one of the largest student run non-profit media outlets in the Big Ten.  After graduating from Purdue University in 2006 with a BS in Marketing and Sales, Len continued his professional career via media planning and buying at Starcom Mediavest Group helping drive offline and online marketing campaigns for the Allstate Insurance Company. Currently, Len spends his time in the online media space at Critical Mass Chicago where he manages digital media strategy for clients such as Mercedes-Benz. In Len’s downtime he can be found blogging at where he tries to lend his innovative thinking to help improve brands, products, and experiences. He is a passionate traveler, skier, and scrabble fanatic with a love for the city of Chicago, its people, and its prowess in the tech community.

SMC Chicago March Event Sponsor

CME Group
CME Group ( is the world’s largest and most diverse derivatives exchange.  Building on the heritage of CME, CBOT and NYMEX, CME Group serves the risk management needs of customers around the globe.  As an international marketplace, CME Group brings buyers and sellers together on the CME Globex electronic trading platform and on trading floors in Chicago and New York.  By acting as the buyer to every seller and the seller to every buyer, CME Clearing virtually eliminates counterparty credit risk.  CME Clearing also offers financial safeguards to help mitigate systemic risk, providing the security and confidence market participants need to operate, invest and grow.  CME Group offers the widest range of benchmark products available across all major asset classes, including futures and options based on interest rates, equity indexes, foreign exchange, energy, agricultural commodities, metals, and alternative investment products such as weather and real estate.  CME Group is listed on NASDAQ under the symbol “CME.”

Watch the SMC Chicago Business to Business Panel replay, thanks to CME Group.

Working behind the Social Media Club Chicago scenes has its advantages. Before the event, our panel gathered on a conference call to talk about what they wanted to know about business to business social media. Here’s what Ellis wants to know – feel free to comment and answer his questions here.

Questions from BtoB Editor, Ellis Booker

1. Given the economy, are practitioners (agencies, marketers, publishers) more of less likely to try experimental tactics like social media?
2. Do we have anecdotes of push-back from management about the ROI of social media? And what is the panel’s advice to marketers about how to
address these challenges?
3. I’m always interested in the organizational implications of new technology adoption. What’s happening within marketing organizations;
who is managing the social media efforts?
4. All publishers are getting involved in social media. But are these domains of interest to marketers? If not, why not? What should
publishers be doing that they aren’t? (Note, along with BtoB, I’m editor of BtoB’s Media Business, a monthly for trade publishing

Twitter conversations about smcchicago and b2b.

SMC Chicago Business to Business Panel photos.

Join SMC Chicago’s Facebook group.

Watch SMC Chicago’s Social Media Meets Chicago Media panel presentation.

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