I was reminded this week of the reasons why speaker selection is critical, and it made me think about some of my favorites, which I will share in a next post, and then I was also reminded of great tips for your conferences on building content and some of things we could do better.
One of the first posts that twigged this was from Adrian Segar on why we don't find paying for content valuable when we are asking "experts" to be part of our event. Some very valid points in the post and in the comments.
For choosing and then maximizing speaker contributions, thank you Mark J Carter for these tips from your session in The Future Events Experience at AIBTM on WHY you want to partner with your speakers to lead to better content to lead to better experiences. It is about first considering WHO will attend, WHAT do they need from your meeting, WHY you will help them when they attend, and WHERE are they looking for information. Once you deep dive into these questions, you can begin to select speakers that make sense.
What can your speaker do for you? Here are some suggestions for cross promotion once you have identified WHY you want the speakers to market for your event (beyond the obvious they are speaking there). This is of course dependent on WHERE you will find your audience - you want to market where they are (google, association website, twitter, email etc.)
* Have speakers do mini videos on what people will gain by attending - post to their site and yours if appropriate
* Write a blog about what they will speak on and link to and from conference site
* Have speakers share their content on social media, linking to conference when that is appropriate
Sponsors are a critical point for all conferences, and have them be part of your content promotion. They should be a sponsor because there is a market match, so having them share your event information makes sense. Make sure you help by providing the information they need to do so, you will be doing both your events and your sponsors a service.
What is next? BXBOnline is doing some very cool content applications with BobTV that will offer the industry some ways to share we have not yet been using. As we continue to "want what we want, when we want it" for our career, life, business, this will become a very interesting tool to watch.
Content plus context plus presentation style = successful learning, retention, connect-the-dot-ability - have fun in the process!