Archive for July, 2009

The Software Industry Conference (SIC) is the premiere event for small business (micro-ISV) software marketers, and it was held last week in Quincy, Massachusetts (just south of Boston). Although the word “software” is in the conference title, it is mostly about internet marketing, and as such, a lot of the sessions have broad appeal. And the conference isn’t just about the sessions. Getting to know people, seeing old business acquaintances and making new ones, is an important part of it.

Next year’s SIC is going to be in Dallas, at the Hyatt Regency DFW (the airport hotel). That should be interesting. I do find it ironic that they’re having it in Texas shortly after I move 2700 miles away. Thanks much. ;)

But more about this year: the hotel was nice, if a tad hard to find. The Digital River reception was Wednesday instead of Thursday evening, and WAY toned down. No crazy games, no huge overall theme. They had a good local seaport-shanty type small band playing and strolling, metal beer steins as give-aways, an open bar and plenty of large-appetizer food (which was tasty), located in a place where you could either be inside or out on a patio… and that was it. The SIAF hosted Thursday’s reception, very low-key, tasty appetizers, cash bar, plenty of conversation tables, and Pictionary games, with a play-off, in the evening. Vendor’s Friday night was the usual. Lots of vendors there.

Speaking of vendors, it seems that ecommerce companies, and ecommerce variation companies, are coming out of the woodwork now. I think there were around 10 there as sponsors.

Also at the vendor’s night, it was nice meeting Nico of Bits du Jour/Iconico, whom I know from forums, but had never met. I think I met Andy Brice and Alwin Hoogerdijk that night, as well.

Which reminds me, Andy and Alwin did a very nice session together. I loved the title of Alwin’s session, “The Art of Ignoring”. And he had a nice grid showing what he felt a micro-ISV should be working on at any given point in their growth. Later that day, I enjoyed sitting in attorney Erik Pelton’s session, where I got some great info and advice. He freely answered questions concerning internet legal issues, which was a big plus – free legal advice!

For me personally, the big news is that I was asked to be on the SIC (SIAF, actually) Board of Directors. I was honored, surprised and pleased, and after talking it over with my husband (who was home with our daughter), I accepted. There are two other new board members: Chris Thornton and Mitchell Vincent. Sharon Housley has resigned from the board for personal & business reasons, after serving wonderfully for 10 years – she’ll be missed on the board, but we’ll still get to see her at the conference.

I’m really glad I went. I came away energized about what we do, and it was great to see old acquaintances and meet new ones. And I learned some things, too. Sharon and Dave Collins and Ben Weintraub are dependable that way. Al Harberg’s session on press releases was also great, I took the most notes in that one. There was one given by a professor from Korea, Alex Huyungkyu Kwon, that was amazing, about text learning versus cartoon/image learning. Dr. Kwon even had EEG data to back up his findings. That session’s value was increased because I sat beside Ben Weintraub, and his comments and questions added even more insight.

All in all, I was really glad to be there, especially after missing the last 2 years. And I’m really, really glad to be home. There is no bed like home. I’m still a little tired – but it was worth it.