Announcing Commscamp for 2015 

Comms Camp 14 was good, really good.

We know – we’re biased. But the people who matter – those who were there on the day – agree.

Ideas and discussions happened. In fact a lot of ideas and discussion happened. Not only did we see an amazing round up of activity including 8 videos, 2 vines, 162 pictures, 15 blogs, 8 storifies, 1 infographic and 7 useful links shared as a result of commscamp, 354 contributed to the #commscamp14 hashtag with a potential reach of 628, 547. Phew.

Even more importantly we think, 96% of the people who attended loved or hugely loved the event and 81% gave the sessions they went to four or five stars out of a possible five. And one other fact that we particularly like – 52% of those who came along had never been to an unconference before. We like that a lot.

So on the back of all that, we’ve got ourselves organised and yes we’ve gone and booked Comms Camp 15.

The big day will be Thursday 9 July and the venue will be the super wi fi boosted Bond Company in Fazeley Street, Birmingham. We reckon you should get it in your diary now.

PS. If you fancy being one of the sponsors for Comms Camp 15, get in touch. Tweet @commscamp

We’ll see you there.

Darren – @darrencaveney

Emma  – @emmarodgers

Dan – @danslee


Creative Commons credit

Tony Moran by Leah Lockhart

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An epic round-up from an epic day #commscamp14

14423124870_e04d56bd78_kThere’s a cycle to how a good unconference works that goes something like this… anticipation, event, noise, reflection… and then the blogs.

For commscamp14 the anticipation in no small part was due to the build-up over which cake was to be baked for Kate Bentham’s cake table.

The event itself was brilliant. We always say we put on the space and then the attendees come and fill it with ideas, discussion and inspiration.

There was noise and then how – inside the room and outside on Twitter looking in – and then the reflection was to be found in the number of blogs that emerged.

So, this is a round-up of 8 videos, 2 vines, 162 pictures, 15 blogs, 8 storifies, 1 infographic and 7 useful links posted as a result of commscamp.

Ann Kempster produced a great spread of pics she posted to Flickr. Can you see yourself?

Leah Lockhart also produced a great spread of pics she also posted to Flickr. Can you see yourself here, too?


Our Chief Handwritten Infographic Person Karen Jeal Lambeth Council digital whizz created this lovely post and infographic around the event she was keen to come to but couldn’t attend.


Al Smith of Helpful Technology wrote this post here on what he took away from the event. Evaluation struck him as being a key theme. Something he welcomed.

14422037619_e73ea8162f_kLizzy and Emily from Deeson Creative wrote a post on what struck them at the event. Understanding psychology and boosting staff morale were two things that struck them.

Civil Servant Victoria Ford was swift out of the blocks to blog her take on what was her first unconference. She loved it and came away with five learning points. 

Dan Slee wrote up some initial conclusions as one of the co-organisers. Evaluation, evaluation and evaluation emerged.

Local government comms person Jon King thought of some fishing anecdotes froim the event and wrote them here.

@karolmc shared a set of notes that were thrown-up on Eventbrite on the day.

Civil servant John Ploughman almost bumped into the Prime Minister at New Street station and wrote-up some of his conclusions here.

Kate Goodall wrote a fine post on her take on the event from the perspective of the event. But she still worries about justifying the event to her boss the next day. 

Dave Worsell of GovDelivery wrote about what good email can do here.

Dan Slee of comms2point0 on the learning points from the IEWM #bestbywm 2014 survey here.

Sally Northeast on her pithy takeaways from commscamp.

@manickmanda posted the things that struck her as well as bonus marks for a Willy Wonka parallel 

Dave Musson’s post on his takehomes which involved music, evaluation and Kit Kat cake. 

Scott from Touch Design has blogged about some of the conclusions he reached not least the benefits of sharing campaigns and a potential role for Flickr.

NEW! Eddie Coates-Madden on commscamp and how editors are turning their backs on press releases.


MyNewsDesk produced this rather good Storify to give their story of their day.

A celebration of the cake baking Storify by Kelly Quigley-Hicks.

NEW! Commscamp all the best bits by Emma Rodgers

NEW! Commscamp all the best Touch Design bits by Emma Rodgers

NEW! Commscamp all the best Deeson Creative bits by Emma Rodgers

NEW! Commscamp all the best Alive With Ideas bits by Emma Rodgers

NEW! Commscamp all the best Govdelivery bits by Emma Rodgers

NEW!  Comms camp all the best MyNewsDesk bits by Emma Rodgers


Comms2point0 and IEWM updated #bestbywm with a survey to show the state of local government social media in the West Midlands in 2014. You can read it on IEWM’s Best by 14422141347_51bf5ae70c_kWest Midlands blog.

Deeson Creative joined forces with comms2point0 to run a survey on local government Facebook reach and how social advertising was working. You can read the slideshare here or you can read the results and a few extra resources here.

Some shared links

You know how it is. You’re in a session and you want to cite a really good post you’ve read.

Ian Wright shared a post about why content marketing fails here. 

John Ploughman shared a post by Facebook on organic reach here.

14423172848_cccb48d9e6_kJamie Officer shared a link that can help you piece together how big and small social media platforms are. 

John Ploughman shared an example of a Thunderclap.

Shane Harley shared a DCLG post on shared code for intranets.

Pauline Roche shared a post that may help digital buddies.

Gemma Finnegan shared five good snapchat campaigns.


John Popham who secured crowdfunding to livestream the event has posted several of the sessions on his Tumblr. You can also re-live the pitching and the award of the seriously cool prizes.

NEW! @puffles2010 posted David Banks’ session on media law and social media.

MyNewsDesk shared this Vine from a session.

Deeson Creative added this Vine.

Creative commons credits.

Trainers by Ann Kempster

Rainbow cake by Ann Kempster

The room by Leah Lockhart

Facebook like hand

Two people sitting


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The pitch [all the sessions]

The deed is done and the ideas have been pitched for #Commscamp14

Missed them or want to use the law of two feet? You can check out all the sessions here.


Room Session 1 11- 11.45 Session 2 12 – 12.45
Conservatory Online Community Management Legal advice
Gallery To video or not to video Should we be using new channels?
Boardroom Flood tips/how can we measure? Doing intranet with comms team
Icebox Data visualisation Making content work harder
Waterside We need to talk about facebook What digital skills do we need? Changing content editorial to content design
Gatehouse Nudge & behaviour change



Room Session 32 – 2.45 Session 43 – 3.45 Session 5 4 – 4.45pm
Conservatory Strategies for engaging Shaping creative campaigns Thunderclap & digital campaigns
Gallery Communicating with businesses Digital buddying for policy Geographical hashtags
Boardroom Change Cambridge  – digital leadership & skills Comms for health and social care Working with the voluntary sector
Icebox Social web for live events Wikipedia Content marketing
Waterside Online newsroom & effective content How to transform internal comms
Gatehouse How to run Twitter chats CPD for comms

From 5.30pm, it’s a mandatory session the pub. We’re at the:

The Old Crown
198 High Street

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#Commscamp14 is on

The cake’s been baked. The journey done and public sector people have come from far and wide.

After many an hour scheming, prepping and deliberating, #Commscamp14 is finally here.

The sunshine is out and 150 people are here to make the largest unconference in the UK [possibly the world] happen. It’s all taking place at the top venue that is the Bond Company in Birmingham. And even better attendance has been free, only made happen as a result of our lovely sponsors.

With such a good group in the room, and an electric atmosphere [we have cake tables -plural – a dj and live music] we’re expecting great things. But if you haven’t been one of the lucky ones to make it here, you can still contribute and keep up on what’s going on.

Watch the hashtag
There will be live tweeting all day on the twitters at #Commscamp14 or @commscamp

Or watch your timeline

Watch the live streaming
Go to:

Keep an eye on the website
We’ll be updating on

Catch up on all the round ups
We [and hopefully a series of others too] will be following up on the best bits after the event. Keep an eye on #Commscamp14 or at @commscamp We’ll also be pulling blogs, tweets and everything else including the playlist together in a helpful round up email. Because we’re good like that.

Whichever way you slice it, you gotta get some #Commscamp action in your life.


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