Producing and attending corporate events, like conferences and trade shows, is not cheap. But people still ‘attend in’ and ‘pay by’ the thousands for the unforeseen value to be had in education and new business relations.
Whatever reputation develops from your event, everyone can benefit from layering social tools (some call it Web 2.0 technology) to enhance the connectedness and interactivity among all interested parties. Event-based social media is in line with the goals of attendees and event producers: to improve physical logistics, distribute information, connect people, and enhance face-to-face conversations.
If you’re producing an event, begin by asking yourself what services, often free, can I take advantage of to extend the event’s social value for those people attending, those who can’t attend, and everyone who wants to look back after the fact. You should look towards Web 2.0 tools, those that behave like socialized desktop applications, to be the catalyst to spread the knowledge and enhanced interaction among all interested parties, whether they’re physically present or not. An event’s information and conversation can be distributed via a variety of means: bulletin boards, photos, video sharing, recorded discussions, news reports, live wikis, quick updates, opinions of event goers, Q&A, group chat, reminders, recommendations, how-to advice, maps, and directions to the next event.
Historically, social networks and like-minded Web 2.0 tools empower users to keep in touch with the thousands of people they’ve collected in their contact database. Without applications like social networks, blogs, micro-blogs, photo sharing, podcasts, video blogs, and of course email it would be impossible for anyone to stay in touch with so many people.
When you meet someone at an event, follow through takes effort, a lot of effort. The communication drop-off rate following a conference is huge. You start with good intentions, trade business cards with the promise of following up. But if you don’t make a note of your meeting and send a message immediately after the conference, the moment is long forgotten. Luckily, Web 2.0 tools offer platforms for attendees and producers to take advantage of communications before, during, and after an event.
Read the full article
I offer my full article “How to Web 2.0-enable your live event.” Read online or download and print the PDF. The article offers advice for producers on how to extend the functionality of a live event by socializing a content network with Web 2.0 tools and enabling conversation around it. Plus it includes a checklist to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything.