Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Social Media and Attendee Personas

Are all of our social media tactics for events targeting a small group of attendees or are they actually motivating all attendees to be more social at our conferences? What do you think?

Have you started exploring the concepts of attendee personas, attendee journeys and attendee mapping? How do you think social media strategies apply to the various types of attendees you are serving?

Friday, August 14, 2015

Ideas from WEC 2015

It is hard to believe that WEC was a week ago already! Most of these ideas pertain to my role as the Attendee Experience Manager of an education technology association, but hopefully something here will spark an idea for your event!

·       Points or other currency in the mobile app game can be accumulated to purchase items in your onsite store. (Watch session video here.)
o   Have sponsors / exhibitors donate items for “sale” at the store.
o   Find other companies who might participate in this kind of promotion but who are not typical vendors and would otherwise not belong in the Expo Hall, but would like to sell to your demographic.

·       Sustainability Engagement in the mobile app game – give points for participation. (Watch session video here.)
o   Hotel linen program, walking instead of shuttles, mobile app instead of printed program, don't use bottled water (or use re-usable bottle), donate $1 for a tree

·       Better assess learning / impact the conference is having.
o   Pre-conference survey sent via email or built into the app

·       Capitalize on / help educate our community on the collaborative economy.

·       Most memorable points for attendees: beginning, high points (keynotes) and end. (Watch session video here.)
o   The Beginning and the end are the loneliest (especially the end).

·       High Impact Learning: Design Your Meeting to Maximize Audience Engagement with Jeremy Bergwerff and Annette Gregg
o   Empathy mapping for each persona (i.e. newbie vs. veteran): What do they hear/see/say/do?, What is their pain/gain?, How does that make them feel?
o   Question for presenters that communicates our desire for participatory learning: “What do you want to learn from the audience?” vs. “What will the audience learn from you?”

·       Awesome coincidence – tweet I saw about #ISTE2015 when I was tweeting about something I heard at #WEC15

Interesting sites & services

  • Fancy Hands is a team of US-based assistants at your fingertips. Use any device, at any time of day, and our assistants will tackle anything on your to-do list!
  • #1 Video Conferencing and Web Conferencing Service
  • Social Q&A is a simple and powerful way to know what questions your audience has and which are most important to the entire group.
  • Your one-stop shop for Online Registration, mobile and web software for Conferences and Trade Shows.
  • Our event-centric SaaS solutions help you efficiently and securely manage all of your events anytime, anywhere, via the cloud. Tucked into one convenient application, your contacts, data, calendars, schedules, tasks, and more -- will always be right at your fingertips.

Pictures the event photographer captured of me

With Jon Trask in the media lounge

With Megan Powers at Rendezvous

Me tweeting

More pictures here.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

What does technology mean for meetings?

I moderated the MPISCC Tech Panel on January 14, 2015. The full audio recording resides on the Meetings Podcast, thanks to Jon Trask, one of our panelists. As a follow-up, I thought I’d answer a few of my own questions since we didn’t get to all of them during the meeting.

Q: At what point do you “rip off the band-aid”? For example, when do you get rid of the printed program in favor of the mobile app or take away access to old technology (microphone) in favor of new (audience response app)

A: There are different strategies for customer events vs. employee events. You need to think about demographics as well. However, your technology will get better adoption rates if you take away the old way of providing the information or engaging with the audience.

Q: Audience interaction or attendee experience is the future of events. How would you define this, how do you use technology, and how is this different from putting on a logistically seamless event?

A: Walking in the attendees’ shoes through a successful and pleasant experience would be the traditional definition of the attendee experience. The difference is the expectations of the attendee of today vs. the attendee of yesterday. Today’s attendee expect more than a seamless event. They want to feel welcome and be given an easy way to find their tribe. They want to tweet feedback and then they expect a response. The customer service element of your event needs to be front and center.

Q: When working with technology vendors, what are the questions that event organizers and clients should be asking?

A: Ask them if they charge for customer service on nights, weekends and holidays. This is how you know you are working with an event company vs. a technology company.

Q: How can hotel and other non-technology suppliers help planners facilitate new technologies in their meetings?

A: As always, understanding the goals and objectives of the event will help you assist your clients. Do your research on the types of technologies your clients are using. Some new technologies might require different types of room setups and layouts. Some planners are getting more creative with different types of meeting design and will need much more flexibility from their venues.

Q: What’s your favorite event technology right now?  Why?

A: I love the idea of gamification but I don’t like most applications that simply reward check-ins as they aren’t always supporting the goals and objectives for the attendee or the organizer. A learning based game like SocialPoint’s Challenge Bar can be used by event organizers and by exhibitors at trade shows.

Let me know if you agree with my answers. What questions do you have about event technology?