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Wheel of FateI’ve been to many conferences and seminars and somehow not much has changed over the years. Even these days
there are still events that don’t have a #hashtag, are held in facilities without Wifi and don’t actively utilise backchannels. It is quite remarkable.

Enter Bill Boorman…

Like a Frank N. Furter for conferencing, Bill’s liberating the event business with #TruLondon, giving each attendee, track leader & sponsor freedom, fun and glee. It’s more a hoopla than a conference. It’s marvellous.

Over recent weeks and increasingly over the last few days, if you’ve been following @billboorman you’ll have seen a glimpse of what we can expect next week. Yesterday, Bill told me about all the activities, outreach, multi-dimensions of #TruLondon. And I have to say, it’s very cool, and showcases how social media can be used to create something exciting, something that doesn’t differentiate between virtual and physical world, something that is living, breathing, something that the word ‘happening’ was created for, something that is full of energy and full of creativity. Does that remind you of anybody?

And whilst the previous 8 events, were great, I have a feeling that this will be much, much better. Have a read…

* 40 track leaders from 11 countries

As is the case with follower numbers, it’s not about the quantity but the quality. All credit to Bill, he has managed to finalise an incredible line up: John Sumser, Kevin Wheeler, Laurie Ruettiman, Matt Alder, Andy Headworth, Glenn Cathey (aka Boolean Blackbelt), China Gorman to name just a few… And even one that is more secretive than the artist formerly known as Prince. A true Monster of Recruitment & HR.

* 100 attendees

No more?! Just 100 attendees! Just think about this ratio – 40 track leaders to 100 attendees. I really like that Bill has set a maximum on ticket sales, which makes it a real treat to be there; especially as the track leaders normally mix and mingle throughout the days & nights. So there’s a real opportunity to connect, to learn, to share and meet some of the brightest minds in our industry.

* 12,000 sign ups for live streaming

After every track there will be live streamed debates and key learnings/insights sessions with the track leaders and so far #TruLondon had 12,000 people sign up to it. Phenomenal. I love the increased globalisation, no boundaries, just one populace – excellent! The platform has been built by JSTN and also includes featured tweets, links & Flickr.

The debates will be filmed by a professional camera team, courtesy of Jobsite.

* 1 fabulous platinum headline sponsor in Jobsite

Woops, I don’t really know how this sneaked in here… outrageous…let’s move on swiftly…

* Zero sales calls & zero marketing $

Attracting sponsors without having to pick up the phone and sell your soul and your audience is a sign of a successful event. And generating all sign ups via Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn is another example of the prowess of Social Media and the incredible connector that Bill Boorman is himself.

* Featured posts

So far 31 different blog posts have been written about #TruLondon – from all over the world. Here are links to 3:

* Masterclasses

The Masterclasses are a new feature and are not part of the live streaming. It’s a real exclusive event – 20 minute case studies, followed by a 20 minute Q&A session

* Meetme-Me cards

You don’t even have to bring your own business cards as each participant can register to receive their own Meetme-Me cards, which is similar to Top Trumps for Social Networkers. That’s going to be a fun game and will surely lead into debates about the usefulness of influence metrics such as Peerindex and Klout.

* Augmented reality

You can’t separate the two Siamese twins – mobile and social. Layer has built an augmented reality app, that apparently (and don’t ask me how, I’m as intrigued as you to see this) lets you identify where tweets are coming from in the room, follow the tweeters & check content by participating tweets. It’s a directional app – so you just need to point your phone/device in the room and you can follow the tweets from that direction. But, hey, that’s restricted to the 140 participants only, what about the rest?

* Mapping

Dynamics Maps by Map that will bring a real time twitter application, mapping the location of all tweets & tweeps with the #, locally, globally. Follow the engagement as it happens across the globe.

* Live blogging

It wouldn’t be a true social event without any live blogging. So we have the ‘classic’ blog squad (sponsored by Pinstripe Talent), Twitter journalists and live bloggers in each track, plus a photographer posting to a constant Flickr stream/twitter fall/tweet clouds, audio-boos and capturing the entire stream of consciousness on There will be video blogs, photo blogs, and normal blogs.

In case you are interested: Twitter journalists will only post quotes and identify the source. Live bloggers in contrast might add their own commentary.

But for me the real beauty comes with the engagement of everybody in the room. ATTB is enabling an iPad app for attendees to write 300 words feedback on tracks, posted on to twitter and to a blog. Like a mash up between a guest book, a feedback form and a back channel. How awesome! Plus, everybody who participants can enter a competition to win an iPad.

* Live sourcing

But it wouldn’t be a real recruitment event without our very own creatures of darkness, the sourcers. So they are not setting their mark over the venue, Bill has given them a live sourcing booth: Recruiters can bring briefs and source one to one in 20 minutes slots. There might even be the odd source off. Sourcer against sourcer and potentially a clash of sourcer against machine. Intriguing, huh?

* John Jones Side Circus

A board breaker will be getting people to do things they never expected, with a big finale at close of Thursday. I know what it is but I won’t tell you. I’m just saying that you might need to taste some of the 40 cocktails on offer in the evening when the venue morphs into a night club.

* Tweet ups

There will be organised Tweet ups like Louise Triance’s UKrecruiter event, but I’m pretty sure there will be also several unscheduled Tweet ups. Isn’t it very helpful that we have all the mobile apps to find us?

* TruPompey

After last year’s success, there will also be a TruPompey event next Saturday including football, food, drinks, pitch invasion and – obviously tweeting. Thanks to the generous main sponsor 😉

It’s astounding, isn’t it? I can see you shiver with anticipation. And you know what’s even better: most of it is done without money changing hands. It’s trading, bartering, exchanging goods and services always with the aim to create something more engaging. And that is why TruLondon is not just another stale event and all the traditional event organisers should sit up, watch and learn.

Obviously, it wouldn’t be possible without Bill at its heart. TruLondon has his personality written all over it. Everybody is welcome to participate and as Bill said: “It’s about having fun.” And fun we will have… it’s just a jump to the left.

Creative Commons License photo credit: h4cknEy3d

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