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Connect with Speakers Before Conference

Social media is great! Even when you know what you should be doing, you sometimes get distracted or forget to do something that you should be doing. Two great cases in point:

Last week, Dr. Janice Presser of The Gabriel Institute (who is one of the speakers at the SoMeBizLife Conference) pointed out to me that the Like Us on Facebook and Follow Us on Twitter buttons were nowhere to be found on the site. “Doh! I knew I forgot something when I set up the site!”

So Janice’s nice note reminded me of an obvious thing I didn’t do but should have. What’s great is that Janice wanted to help me get more people connected on Facebook and Twitter. And the help is appreciated.

Then just this morning, as I was purusing Twitter on Tweetdeck, I noticed a tweet by @simbeckhampson who hails from Aystetten, Germany. The tweet contained a link to a blog post “An Open Letter to Conference Organizers” by Mitch Joel. I don’t know either of these gentlemen, but I sure appreciate the reminder.

When I first set up the site, I planned to go back and add twitter links to each speaker’s page. That didn’t happen until this morning, thanks to this reminder. Not only can you follow each speaker individually, but you can follow the list of all #SoMeBizLife speakers by using this list on twitter.

Mitch Joel offers other insights on how to do a conference well. I think we’re generally on track with his ideas, and I expect SoMeBizLife to be a great conference. Summary of his points:

  1. Don’t oversell what the speakers will actually deliver
  2. Prepare your speakers
  3. Pay your speakers
  4. Prepare your panels
  5. Be mindful of attendees costs in addition to registration fees
  6. Surprise and delight
  7. Know your customer
  8. Let people connect prior to the event

This is a great checklist! I agree with all of them and intend to deliver on all of these. I’m not going to go through each one, but will make a few points:

Speakers: We have been working with speakers to hone their topics and will continue to. I expect them to deliver as much or more than what is in their presentation description. Even though we cannot afford big name national and international speakers, all speakers are being paid and will deliver professional information and advice. We have avoided selling platform time to sponsors/vendors — because it really hacks me off when I pay to go to an event just to listen to sales pitches. Likewise, panelists will be prepared and paid.

Participants: We have worked to keep costs low for the conference, and are holding it in a location that is easily reachable for most pariticipants by car or train. Parking is free. Breakfast, lunch and snacks are included. Each breakout session has five choices in an effort to ensure that each person will find value throughout the day. We think we’re on target.

Connections: If you’d like to connect with people prior to the event, jump in to our Facebook page or join us on Twitter.

Can’t wait to see you there!

Chuck Hall


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