Summary of #Expochat January 4, 2012

  1. This idea was born from a blog post by me, Traci Browne (@tracibrowne) “A Conference Curmudgeon” in which I lament the lack of content and class format I preferred.  It lead us to the chat topic.  Are there a lot of attendees that wish we were doing something different?  Is it possible to please everyone?  Is there a better way to put together our conference portion of the event?
  2. Our first question was…”How do youwork with your conference education team? In tandem? Don’t know who they are? Pain in your side?”
  3. A1 We’ve consolidated a bit – I’m actually a (small) part of the education team. The overlap definitely comes in handy. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:07:40
  4. A1 – both teams should work together closely I’d say – all part of same package for the visitor #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:09:47
  5. A1 From a venue perspective, it seemed that the two were never on the same page or book for most events I dealt with #Expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:07:59
  6. and Greg clarified that with…
  7. @tracibrowne Lack of coordination between sessions ending and exhibit openings, different graphics #Expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:10:37
  8. A1. From my viewpoint (exhibitor), not as well as I hope to. Very disconnected in communications in the call for paper process. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:08:32
  9. Scott clarified with…
  10. Yes. I’ve found that the promotion of the session doesn’t fit the track nor align with what attendees wants. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:13:10
  11. A1. it seems to vary more with assns than for-profit shows – assn’s tend to be more territorial, more divided in communication #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:09:42
  12. Naomi added to Stephanie’s comment
  13. @stephselesnick I would agree, but only to an extent. At my assn we’ve learned to work together, a result of necessity (layoffs) #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:11:32
  14. @theexpogroup A1 – in smaller shows we’ve worked with its usually the same pple doing both the conf content and managing the expo #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:10:49
  15. I like when expo and conference team create overall theme, agenda, and goals…then go do our thing with common message. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:11:50
  16. Our next question was “When do unopposed exhibit hours work best?
  17. @tracibrowne mornings or early afternoon. You start to lose people around 4 to parties, etc. @ big shows. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:14:36
  18. A4 … at smaller events, it depends on the program and how much content you have. Need balance. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:16:01
  19. We hold our educational sessions the day prior to the show opening as well as on days two and three (four day show) and sell out #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:16:56
  20. a2. unopposed exhibit hours should be used when it’s a heavy conference/content event. Or with certification programs #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:17:22
  21. @tracibrowne A4 if you are doing a show in a venue like Las Vegas, I think nopposed floor hours are a must & start after 10a #Expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:17:33
  22. A2 I think it’s tough to say – a day (or AM) of unopposed exh/edu hrs is good, but there’s also various meetings that may conflict #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:18:42
  23. @tracibrowne A4 vendors/exhibitors need a break too so closing down for a few hours let’s them rest #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:19:21
  24. A2 also depends on focus of event (conference with expo, or exhibition with conference ) #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:22:59
  25. Also depends on who members are — should exhibitors really be in the conference sessions? Makes sense in tightknit industries #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:23:17
  26. How much of conference during exhibitions is online/on demand on expo website later? Cld ease pressure to do 2 things at a time #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:25:11
  27. The Third Question was a two parter…first “How should tracks be formatted? By experience? By job responsibility? By Industry? By industry sector? By learning format? Other?
  28. @tracibrowne I say by learning format and industry trends. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:26:34
  29. A3a – all can be good. Depends on conference goals, audience, etc. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:26:51
  30. A3a. I do not like tracks separated by beginner, advanced, etc. You may be a veteran at one thing and beginner in another #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:27:01
  31. A4 By experience level is tricky, hardly anyone ever ventures into a novice session & they wind up in intermediate asking basic qs #Expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:27:48
  32. @tracibrowne A3 I like tracks org by job responsibility. “If you do x, y & z…these sessions will help you do x, y & z better.” #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:27:51
  33. Q3a #expochat I think by job responsibility if possible. IMHO it makes it easier to find relevant events.
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:28:41
  34. @tracibrowne agreed! tracks should be on the subject matter. If ppl teaching are experts leave it to them to decide on the level #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:29:15
  35. I find tracks by experience are hit and miss. Nobody wants to admit to being a beginner. Like topics by department or skill set #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:31:20
  36. @ConferenceHB By job responsibility is hard. I truly do not expect people’s ego to honestly admit to their true responsibilty. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:31:50
  37. Part two was “Have you seen tracks organized in new and different ways?  How did that work?
  38. I have recently seen sessions organized around “content hubs” #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:33:31
  39. with “content hubs” u cld also include exhibitors, demos, conf sessions, whatever inside the hub #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:36:43
  40. Mini Events w/in event RT @michellebruno with “content hubs” u cld also include exhibitors, demos, conf sessions, whatever in hub #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:38:43
  41. A3b – nice if conference track can be included on show floor (we did ask the expert sessions at trade show booth) #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:36:33
  42. 3Qb: yes CTIA Wireless does a good job. They organize the tracks by industry trends. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:37:02
  43. @tracibrowne Topics include Cloud Computing, Mobile Banking, & etc.
    #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:39:33
  44. The next question was Should we have more sessions to cover all possible topics or less at higher quality with professional speakers/moderators? (admittedly this was a bit loaded…could have been phrased better).
  45. A2 less sessions, better topics and presenters #Expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:46:13
  46. @tracibrowne A2. I say more possible topics. The cost of prof speakers/moderators sometimes blows a budget. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:46:53
  47. A2 I think some of our conferences/shows have way too many sessions…just same topics over and over w/ different speakers #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:46:54
  48. A2 maybe try both and see which gets more traction then change. that said I like fewer topics with better speakers #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:47:05
  49. @tracibrowne A2 – Quality over quantity any day. #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:47:09
  50. yup RT @tracibrowne: A2 I think some conferences/shows have way too many sessions…same topics over & over w/ different speakers #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:47:58
  51. A2 – Survey your visitors 🙂 Speakers cld be professional but also a need for industry icons (reason for attendee to visit) #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:49:26
  52. @tracibrowne Engineers and doctors love having a choice of sessions to choose from #Expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:53:02
  53. At the end we asked if there was anything folks thought we should explore further on future chats…
  54. quality vs quantity @tracibrowne: Is there anything we discussed today you think we should drill down further in a future chat? #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:58:31
  55. Q5. What is the best method to promote the education tracks and what’s involved in the speaker selection process? #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:56:36
  56. Meeting architecture – applied to exhibitions #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 15:58:50
  57. I wouldn’t mind discussing @michellebruno’s idea of content hubs tying in with exhibit layout #expochat
    Wed, Jan 04 2012 16:01:16
  58. based on some of the side conversations I think it would be good to discuss adding virtual components to our shows…not just for the folks at home but for those times when you want to be in the exhibit hall AND a session at the same time.Those were just the highlights…if you want to read the entire archive of the chat it is available for download on the Expochat site.
  59. Chats are every Wednesday at 3PM ET (Noon PT) and topics and questions are usually posted by Monday afternoon.
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About Traci Browne

Trade Show Consultant and Freelance Writer
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One Response to Summary of #Expochat January 4, 2012

  1. Pingback: Education on the show floor continued | expochat

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