I have been doing some research to see what others are undertaking at their conferences to keep things “fresh”. Here are some of my favourite finds:
- Virtual conferences
- Online exhibit halls
- Electronic program materials to ensure a green environment
- Podcasting some or all of the sessions
- Encouraging delegates to engage in live tweeting by creating a conference Twitter page. Have a large screen in the room for everyone to read what others are thinking of the sessions.
- I thought this was a pretty cool idea! Provide each delegate with a MingleStick. With the click of a button, delegates can connect with hundreds of people and upload their mingle connections. It is like providing a business card to a new connection but with more information on it. You can upload your connections online so you can view contact information AND profile pictures. This facial recognition helps recall your conversations at the event.
- Offer delegates a sunrise walk, which can easily be sponsored! Delegates can start their day off energized and clear headed.
- Have an internet cafe available so, during breaks, delegates can catch up on business or upload their data from their MingleStick!
- Create a blog prior to the conference asking potential delegates for their ideas, suggestions or speakers that they would like to hear.
- Instead of a regular coffee and tea break mix it up and have a candy bar or carnival themed break complete with popcorn and caramel apples!
If you have any great ideas that are tried and true, let me know!
Seth Godin created a blog post titled “the best reason for a big event” …check it out.