Background on The Insight Exchange: We launched The Insight Exchange to shake up the events industry by moving away from the format driven events that have been in the market for the past 10+ years. Having been in this industry for 15 years, both here and in the US, I think Australia is the prime place to test, expand, and make a worldwide change to creating events that are more valuable, educational and exciting.
At The Insight Exchange we believe in three pillars to make this change happen: Technology – for efficiency, entertainment, and engagement Interaction – for exchange, communication, and insights Education – for knowledge sharing, advanced learning, and value By combining all three together, we’re looking to create experiences that are valuable to those at the event but ultimately further on to the necessary executives within the organization. For this short talk, I thought it would be beneficial to walk through some examples of unique events. For those of you in the events industry, you’ll know that these are just format differences, however, by making these changes, you’re changing the attendees experience and this is where we see the events industry going. Just remember to implement change, you need to KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE and educate them along the way.
Cross Continental Events The Insight Exchange purchased Future of Media Summit, which is a cross continental event using Skype to facilitate the event on two continents. Key Learnings: Need to have someone on both sides of the event, otherwise, it becomes like watching TV The Un-Conference This is an event that looks to tap into the knowledge within the room. Set up blank sheets of paper and let ½ the audience write in the topics they can add value to and let them connect through each topic. Key Learnings: Need to strike the right balance between structure and unstructure to make it valuable to the attendees – again, you need to know your audience to pull this off successfully. Living Networks These events use technology to see who is connected to whom at the event Key Learnings: This takes time to administer before the event, but similar formats can be adjusted to create the same value Intro Network Events By using technologies such as nTags and IntroNetworks, attendees can identify who has similar interests. These technologies map out the connections. Key Learnings: You will need to gather data from your attendees ahead of time for this to work Community Grouping On a more simple level to Intro Network Events, capturing pre-event information and creating community groups (through color coded badges), attendees are able to see immediately who they’re interested in connecting with. Key Learnings: This is nothing new, but by being innovative in the way you group people, it can be very beneficial to the attendees. You must know your audience’s motives and needs to be able to create an environment that is unique. Attendee Content Generation By creating a simple yet complete pre-survey or discussion, you can can ask the questions, “What can you offer/What do you want?” To develop the content, audience base and format of the event. Key Learnings: This is NOT the same as setting up an attendee communication tool, such as a blog or by using Twitter or some other social media format, this is about getting to know your audience better, interviewing them and gathering specific information on what their value proposition is to being at the event – AND THEN matching it to others. I guess you could call this the “match-making” style event. These are some examples of how events are changing. They’re certainly not the only ones. The key is to be creative, know your audience, test the concept and put yourself in your audience’s shoes to make it successful.
It’s about creating a memorable experience in which people can exchange insights and deepen their learning.
Integrate Technology for effective exchange Pre-Event: registration, communication, and information On-Site: making content more compelling with audio, video, graphics Audience: allowing them to participate (via Twitter, nTag, spotme, handsets, or microphones) Post-Event: continue the discussion using social media (blogs, social networks)
Require Interaction from your audience to deepen the experience Know your audience (Accounting, Marketers, Sales, CFO’s) and make sure you create appropriate interaction, but don’t be afraid to try something new Some of the best knowledge isn’t with the speakers, but is right in the room – pull that out of your attendees Allow them to give you feedback, good or bad, so that you can tweak for next time
Make sure the content is Educational Needs to give insights into the topic Be entertaining and cater to all learning styles Has to be actionable
Feel free to contact me at any time.
Future of Conferences - Insight Exchange
The Future of Conferences:
The Insight Exchange Perspective
Beth Etling, MBA
CEO, The Insight Exchange
The Insight Exchange (TIE)
You can’t implement any of these unless you
know your audience.
• Cross-Continental Events
• The Un-Conference
• Living Networks
• Intro Network Events
• Community Grouping
• Attendee Content Generation Events
• Use technology effectively
– Visual, Feedback, Participation, Evaluation
– Pre-event, On-site, Post-event
• Extend the experience
– Social Networking Sites, Building Community
• Create an open environment
• Use technology
• Develop exercises
• Solicit feedback constantly
• Follow up
• Create compelling educational content
• Cater to all learning styles
• It has to be actionable