A conference is a powerful tool when it comes to positioning your company as thought leaders in your industry. But increasingly firms are hosting a series of conferences, rather than just stand-alone events. This ensures that your company is on the minds of your delegates for a longer stretch of time, and they won’t simply go home and forget about it all.
While the branding impact of a series of conferences might be considerable, hosting a series of events can have its downsides too. How do you get companies to send their employees to not one but two or three conferences?
Make it a valuable and enjoyable experience
Ensure the conferences are valuable to attend. Delegates should come away with some great ideas, plenty of newly-gained knowledge and contacts.
So how can the event organiser ensure these three things are gained from attending a conference? Firstly, make sure your speakers are top notch industry leaders that people will be excited to see. Put on a mixture of talks, seminars and workshops to keep delegates engaged. Attendees will then be able to pick and choose the sessions they will get the most out of.
The traditional way to help people network is to schedule in social time with food and a couple of drinks too. This time-tested method is as useful as ever - but don’t forget to mix it up with some social networking. Twitter is a particularly useful tool so make sure there is an official hashtag for the event. This will encourage attendees to tweet their thoughts about various speakers and events, and connect with other delegates.
Continuity is key
A series of conferences offers speakers the chance to really delve into their topic. A great three-part talk over three events is likely to encourage people to come back to listen each time. Equally, a workshop or seminar in which delegates are asked to work on something and bring their ideas back next time will give the event a sense of continuity. You could even offer the option of booking multi-event ticket packages via your delegate registration system to make sure they return.
However, you don’t want to alienate people who missed out on the first couple of conferences, so ensure that the event is accessible too. This can be done by sharing resources online - whether this be a video of various talks or seminars, presentations, or some of the ideas that were floated.