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Did we promise to see you in the summer? Said and done. Only this time I brought reinforcements.

I went again to Social Media Camp Summer Edition by Biz and… it was great again! Me and my colleague, Mădă Badea, PR & Influencer Executive, had an awesome experience this edition of Biz SMS Camp.

Mădălina felt the need to put her own touch in the introduction and said, and I quote: “Of course, we’ll see you again in the winter to support Patricia in the themed competitions. You know, sharing is caring. Hi, I’m Mădă also known as this year’s “reinforcements” for Social Media Camp Summer Edition by Biz. It was my first year, the first of many I hope to come, cuz it was a blast!”

1. What was the Biz SMS Camp summer edition 2023 about?

Patricia: It was about a lot of learning and activities that set our wheels in motion. It was about brands new and old, about connections, fun and friendships.

Mădălina: There’s nothing like the cold morning air while answering emails – or hiding in between them because your social anxiety isn’t ready to let you out among new people yet. Still, that’s exactly the best part of camp. All sorts of cool people attend who will come to approach you, to network, to seek out new information, to share industry secrets and to search for inspiration.

2. What were your impressions? How was the return?

Patricia: As usual, I left there with a tremendous amount of learning that I have shared with others in my work and everyday life: Social Media Camp isn’t just about advertising. I have a sense of familiarity there, because it’s a place where I feel very comfortable especially being among similar people with the same job and always having common topics. It’s an experience you have to have at least once in your life.

Mădălina: Coffee, smiles and simplicity, lots of hugs and ” at 10:00 in the salon”. That was the first wave of impressions I felt when I arrived. I then quickly discovered that the serious people in the industry are just like those cool high school teachers who come with you on field trips and teach you about life in between songs.

3. What happened on the first day?

Patricia: Just like last time when I arrived, Caesar from 5 to go was waiting for us with coffee ready, goodie bags everywhere, an absolutely delicious meal and Martha’s bell calling us into the conference room to make our presentations. What you don’t know about me is that my anxiety goes crazy when I have a microphone in my hand and I’ve never refrained from admitting it – I’m not me when I speak in public. But of course, I’ve done it, yet again.

We sat and listened to the first introductions, got our early learning fix and listened to the best presentation of my life! If I tell you what it was about you won’t believe me – trees. You know Atenție, cad mere, right? This man had a powerpoint presentation where he just put pictures of trees. Best presentation I’ve ever been a part of in my entire life. Best narrator I’ve ever had the opportunity to listen to. He is truly a storyteller, he explained our path in life and success with the help of tree species. I loved it!

IN THE EVENING, Alfa Romeo gave us something to think about with their theme party. That’s right, Italian party! As every time there were contests that amused us, for Mădă I can even say that I managed to induce her 100% in the spirit of the camp, because she ended up in one of the teams, without wanting to, but she won. A win is a win!

The two of us retreated to our room rather quickly, the fatigue of the day having taken its toll, and prepared ourselves for the next one which was shaping up to be full of learning from some wonderful people who wanted to share their secrets with us. I’m not lying when I say that this camp is a goldmine for anyone who really wants to learn things.

Mădălina: We started with an activity for my taste, and when I say that I mean COFFEE. 5togo introduced us to their latest and greatest and why we should collect all the colorful bottles: for aesthetic.

IN THE EVENING, you start to hear everyone gathering downstairs for the party. We had Italian Vibes the first night. What I can add in addition to what Patricia said is that the true creativity of advertising people (and only) is best seen in the clothing choices & improv contests.

4. What happened on the 2nd day?

Patricia: Brief Day. After the presentations we were divided into teams, Biz SMS Camp has a tradition where we do this team exercise, we receive briefs from the brands present and we do the strategy and activation (mostly what the client asks for) in an hour! Yes, you read that right, in an hour. Seems like a small thing, I know, but the best ideas are usually the first to come out of your mouth, that’s what I’ve managed to learn since coming here. I fell into the Santa Maria team, a new brand in the Romanian Tex-Mex food market. We made it to the podium, 2nd place.

In the evening, because it’s summer, the theme was Festival Party. We had so much fun!

Mădălina: I found out about the “Great Brief Competition”. An important thing to note here is that I am an extremely, mhm, extremely competitive person. I had the brief from KFC, which I managed to contribute with influencer expertise and activations. I won third place.

There were also a few presentations that I paid attention to that captivated me either because of the subject matter or the man. Specifically, Andrei Dunuță & Alexandru Ion. Andrei came with a presentation on how to make a winning pitch and reminded us why it’s ok to be different, and Alex talked about Romania’s Coolest Gaming Event of the Year: the 15th World Esports Championships – Iasi 2023. Did I mention it includes festival elements, but also Comic-Con? And it lasts 10 days? Mhm.

EVENING, Festival Party, outfit on point, ready to use up all my social battery.

5. Dar în a 3-a?

Patricia: Or as I like to call it – my favourite day. Highlight of the camp. I went to an activation with MaPN. Radu and Roxana gave us the 100% military experience, they took us from the Cold Stream in their military trucks, we got to their training base, saw how heavy the weapons are, saw what a real tank looks like (inside and out, not so… basic), they showed us how to make fire in harsh conditions and we climbed the walls and zip-lined. IT WAS SO FUN!

Mădălina: I rethought my future career and seriously wondered if I should have chosen the army instead of a theoretical high school. Trucks, dust, how to survive, telecommunications, guns and the rocket launcher we call bazooka, ziplining and rock climbing. We did it all, we loved it!

There has also been quite a heated debate between methods of brand promotion and which is the most effective. Obviously, Influencer Marketing & Performance Markentig were the opponents who battled it out for a pretty close score: 3127 for influencers. Now, now, don`t be sad.

6. What were the highlights of your experience?

Patricia: After the MaPN activation, we gathered in the hall to say goodbye, share opinions and conclusions, with tears in our eyes (because you don’t leave the camp with a smile on your face, you love it and you are really sorry). You meet wonderful people who really teach you very useful and valuable things, you have the opportunity to talk to them for 3 full days, you have fun, you get some sleep and you don’t regret anything.

Here is me and Mădă on the last night, AT THE LAST PARTY, while we were really sorry to go home.

Mădălina: You can take the man out of the agency, but you can’t take the agency out of the man. So I have put a few cool influencers on my mental list that I hope to get to know professionally much better.

7. Conclusions: why is it important to participate in such a camp, do you still go, what is there to learn/remember?

Patricia: From a Social Media person’s perspective this camp is a goldmine when talking about learning. From PPC, to strategies that have led to award winning campaigns to contests, really cool activations and lots of fun. You leave there with a wealth of learning that really helps you professionally, knowledge that you don’t get the chance to learn so quickly with other opportunities.

What I can say as a conclusion on my part is… hehe, see you in winter!

Mădălina: Four days of camp may seem like a short period of time, but believe me not a single minute of those days was wasted. We had learning activities every day, but also parties that let’s be honest, we missed.

The last party also came with the inevitable ending sadness and longing for more. But I think we managed to learn a lot of new things and connect with quite a few cool people who we’ll see again next winteeeer.