It’s rare that in our industry we experience a lot of firsts. We quickly forget how exhilarating it is to experiment. But this year my friend, John Siracusa tried. His vision to bring together banks and credit unions to talk about the challenges we face worked.

For those of you at home, here is a little of what you missed.

There were plenty of selfies.

And keynotes about how we are good at giving away huge checks.

Drew did a phenomenal job of articulating that challenge we face of differentiating. Including a great example of a demolition company posting videos of exploding buildings (anyone ready to explode a branch?)

One of the great things about a conference that is so focused on a niche is that everyone could share in workshops and really work to improve. I attended Jill Castilla’s and watched one group do the robot. (Perhaps a first at a financial conference).

We experienced panels that felt more like conversations. (Great job moderating @Chriscommando)

And plenty of practical tips to developing strategy, content, processes and consensus among your teams. Yes, social media is about data after all and several speakers were not afraid to get to the nitty-gritty.

A special thanks to @johnsiracusa and the staff @banksocialconf for their hard work. I believe as we as an industry begin to work closer and share ideas, we will all make conferences feel more like reunions and begin making a stronger community around banking.

This is a reprint from Social Assurance Blog.