A busy autumn, indeed.

The end of summer brings longer nights, cooler temperatures, and a return to conference season! This year, I’ve been lucky enough to be invited  to share some stories with social media and digital marketers around America in September and October! Here’s where I will be:


SocialFresh Conference – September 23-25, Tampa, FL

On September 23 and 24, I’ll be at Social Fresh Conference in Tampa! This year’s speaker list is outstanding! Featuring Jay Baer, Scott Monty, Chris Brogan, Twitter, HP, Patron, Priceline, Buffer, The Today Show, American Eagle and more. Social Fresh is one track, with no fluff — filled with highly actionable and practical content.  I’ll be one-third of the Power of Community Building workshop with Savannah Peterson of Speck Design, and Matt Singley of Singley + Mackie on the 23rd, so come hang out!

SocialFresh is one of my favorite conferences and I always get something useful out of it – both from the networking and the content! Register here!


OrlandoIX – October 2-6, Orlando, FL

Sort of a “super-conference” for the city Orlando, OrlandoiX features five power-packed days of dynamic keynotes, panels, exhibits, and entertainment that showcases leading advancements in entertainment technology, interactive media, and digital arts.  I’ll be keynoting the conference on as part of the Digital Expo on the last day, October 6.  Register here!

LIFT conference=LIFT, Simply Measured Conference, October 22, Seattle, WA

A new conference, from the team that brings you the Simply Measured suite of social reporting tools, their first conference is aiming to be practical too. It’ll be my first time in Seattle, so I’m excited about that!

From their website:

“We will have no celebrity speakers with fluff content, no vendor pitches of any kind, no “advance” sessions that feel like 101, and no “best practices” from five years ago. Everything shared will be high utility and up-to-date. You will learn things you can put to use as soon as you get back to your desk.”

Sounds good to me.  I’ll be speaking on October 22 in the afternoon.  Get your tickets here!

And if you’re coming to one of these conference and want to network (and talk like humans, without selling each other things 😉 ), feel free to reach out to me on Twitter at @matthewknell!

One of the best things about conferences is networking and I hope to see you at one of these great events!


SXSW 2015: A recap

Day made. #mophierescue

A photo posted by Matthew Knell (@matthewknell) on

Another year of SXSW has come and gone, and it’s pretty obvious that the business of content and branding has continued to change.  With that in mind, I’m sharing some livetweet recaps from some of the top content panels. Hope you enjoy!

  • The Art and Science of Shareability” with Dao Nguyen, BuzzFeed’s publisher  (good nuggets about their CMS, how they test, and how they use data, and their push towards “impact” as a metric)
  • The Future Of Distributed Media with BuzzFeed’s Summer Anne Burton (focus on how BuzzFeed views distributed content, and some learnings about their BFF team)
  • Simple Ways to Massively Increase Your Content” – with NBC Sports’ Lyndsay Signor and Oracle’s Kaila Garrison (interesting points on content curation / creation for a social audience)
  • A Happy Marriage: How To Integrate Experts and UGC” with Arabella Bowen of Fodor’s Travel, Matt Atchity of Rotten Tomatoes and Stacey Rivera of Bon Appetit  (interesting examples of UGC / Pro content, but maybe a bit biased since all came from Pro content side first)

Mentors Wanted

I’ve been lucky enough during my long career to have many folks who have taken the time out of their days to help me get better at my chosen craft, even today, and it’s always been important to me to try to give back when I can.

As many of you may know, one of my side gigs is as a Tech Mentor In Residence at Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. We’re building a new mentorship program for the students to give them a look at what a career in technology / digital strategy / product development may looks like and would love to have you, dear reader, involved in the program if you’d want to be! If this is something that’s interesting to you, send me an email at hellomatt@tagsmith.org! We’re putting together a couple of events in the next few months and other events too and the students, I’m sure, would be extremely appreciative of your time.

Thanks for reading.

Thank you for reading!

It’s been a really fun ride to see my quick analysis on the now world-famous Ellen “selfie” tweet get some much attention!

It was one of Medium’s top posts of the week the week it came out, and so far has gotten more than 16,000 views, easily amongst the most viewed things I’ve ever written. Thanks to my friends at SocialFresh, it’s also gotten more than 500 social interactions there.

So thanks for reading! Missed the story, check it out on SocialFresh, or using Medium’s nifty new embed feature below:

5 Reasons Why The Ellen Tweet Worked (and 1 Key Question)


Update: The post made the Medium Top 100 for March 2014!

Everything old is new again

Back in mid 1997, I took a chance and answered an ad on MSN.com (yes, I know) for a new company called “The Mining Company” that was based in New York, and was looking for people to write about topics of passion. Obviously, I kind of had a thing for open-wheel auto racing (still do), and I had just taught myself copious amounts of HTML, so I applied, and before you knew it, I was About.com’s first Auto Racing Guide.

I got to interview Indy 500 winners, write about tragedy at the track at Charlotte, and at Fontana when Greg Moore lost his life in 2000. I moved over to what then became known as “About.com” in a corporate capacity in 2000.  It was my first full-time job working “on the Internet”, was working there on 9/11 and got to work with a team that helped develop a product that was ultimately patented, and do a lot of other fun things before I left in August 2003.

Fast forward 10 years later, and a few more gray hairs and a few great jobs later, and today I’m finally able to share that I’m back with About.com, starting a newly created role as Vice President of Social Media and Community Strategy.

I’ve always had a soft spot for this company since the old days, and it’s refreshing and reassuring to see the place get some love and opportunity after IAC purchased them last August. The opportunity to help millions of passionate users connect with topics and content created by thousands of passionate guides through social media is huge, and I’m really excited to be a part of the team looking to help bring About back to some great things.  (And a quick thanks to Neil and Scott and the whole team for the opportunity.)

You can read more about some of the other new changes here on TechCrunch, and if you’d like to come join us, we’re hiring.   A lot.    Tell them I sent you!