Lobby crashers – next wave of disruption or a necessary evil?

Archive of today’s chat is available via Storify – https://storify.com/tracibrowne/lobby-crashers-next-wave-of-disruption-or-a-neces

Welcome back to #Expochat! Traci, Dana, Michelle and I are excited to be back from our summer hiatus and look forward to today’s chat. Please make sure you complete our survey (short and to the point)

– Thanks

Steph

Stephanie Selesnick

Lobby crashers, suitcasers or outboarders – are they next wave of disruption or a necessary evil?

I read some articles this summer that got me thinking about people who crash paid events: conferences, meetings, or exhibitions. In other words, they take advantage of an industry gathering to do business and network without paying an entry fee. They grab attendees in hallways, hotel lobbies, bars, and any other place they can think of.

We could debate the ethics of this subject for days or weeks, but won’t. Instead we’ll discuss either bringing them into the fold or keeping them out – all in our 131-character format.

Please read these articles prior:

http://velvetchainsaw.com/2014/07/24/ambush-marketing-4-ways-to-diffuse-conference-scammers/

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/19/business/conference-crashers-make-contacts-but-dont-register.html?_r=3

Questions:

  1. Besides being cheap, why do people attend a conference or exhibition but not pay for it?
  2. Should we care about lobby crashers? Do they negatively impact the bottom line or event?
  3. Should education be free to everyone?
  4. Does free education on the show floor work?
  5. Should we have different levels and price points of education?
  6. Should we hold networking or educational events behind closed doors? Why? Why not?
  7. In spite of all of our good efforts, how can we keep lobby crashers out?
  8. How can we get the “Lobby Crashers” at our conferences and expos to buy in? (Concrete ideas)
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About Traci Browne

Trade Show Consultant and Freelance Writer
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