How to Increase Attendance at Events by Leveraging Your Speakers and Exhibitors as Advocates
Are you looking for ways to increase attendance for your upcoming events? Many organizations focus on big-ticket items such as the agenda, marketing strategies, and sponsorships when it comes to planning an event. One often overlooked opportunity lies in leveraging your speakers and exhibitors to help make your event a success. Using these resources is a great way to build anticipation leading up to the event while also boosting participant engagement once they arrive – creating a win-win situation for both you and them! This webinar outlines some of our best tips that event organizers can use to effectively leverage their speakers and exhibitors before, during, and after their events.
EVENT TECH ADVOCATE, EVA Event Tech Hub
Vinnu Deshetty is the Founder and CEO of EVA – Event Tech Hub helping clients embrace digital tools that improve their attendee experiences while making the meeting planner’s job easier. With over 25 years of meeting and conference planning experience in the association and nonprofit industries, Vinnu brings a unique understanding of both the tech and event planning worlds. Vinnu focuses on making tech accessible and productive for meeting planners. She leads development teams to bring a sense of humanity to AI development making EVA’s technology a reality that is easily implemented and activated. Raised as a coal miner’s daughter in western Kentucky, Vinnu stays true to her southern roots by valuing community in both her personal and professional lives. She obtained a Bachelor of Science from Vanderbilt University and a Master of Public Administration. Vinnu now works and resides in the Washington, DC area.
Group Director, Marketing Strategist, mdg Agency
Emily is a strategic marketing leader and problem-solver who believes that a flexible balance of creativity, logic, and innovation is key to delivering the mdg brand promise to her clients. Informed by data-driven insights and inspired by igniting emotional connections, she and her team of marketing aficionados develop marketing strategies that cut through the noise, breathe new life into established brands, uncover game-changing audience insights, and execute flawless tactical campaigns to deliver on organizational goals.
Rusty is Co-founder of AnswerStage a Boston-based provider of automated video collection and production services. Rusty’s passion is helping companies and organizations build brand communities and leverage the cost-efficiencies of user-generated content. AnswerStage works with clients to automatically collect, brand, and produce videos to promote events, serve as testimonials and highlight thought leaders.
This webinar was produced by EVA – visit evareg.com
EVA makes meeting and learning online easy, prodeuctive, and memorable with the latest event technology tools. We have learned a lot throughout our journey and would love to share the best practices and lessons with event and meeting planners. Our webinars provide you with the right set of “event tools” in the form of tips, recommendations, and lessons learned to optimize your event experience further and cater to a wider audience.
- The power of speakers and exhibitors as advocates can’t be underestimated. By leveraging their networks, you can reach new audiences and increase engagement.
- To effectively leverage your speakers and exhibitors, you need to provide them with the right tools and resources. This could include social media templates, email copy, and other promotional materials.
- When it comes to engaging speakers, it’s important to communicate with them regularly and provide them with a clear understanding of your goals and objectives. You should also consider offering them incentives or rewards for their participation.
- Exhibitors can also be valuable advocates for your event. By creating a sense of community among your exhibitors, you can encourage them to promote your event and drive attendance.
- One effective strategy for engaging both speakers and exhibitors is to create a private online community where they can connect with one another and share ideas. This can also help you to gather valuable feedback and insights.
- Ultimately, the key to successfully leveraging your speakers and exhibitors as advocates is to focus on building strong relationships with them. By investing in these relationships and providing value, you can create a powerful network of advocates who will help you to drive registrations and engagement for your event.
[00:01] Increasing registrations and engagement using speakers and exhibitors
[07:27] Direct mail is still useful but digital channels are still the main focus for attendee acquisition
[13:49] Effective trade show exhibiting and speaker promotion depend on advanced planning and communication
[20:03]Make speaker prep easy
[26:00] Using automated tools to promote exhibitors
[32:11] Successful event strategy involves leveraging speakers, exhibitors, and attendees
[38:50] Exhibitors can generate custom discount codes to invite attendees
[45:10] AnswerStage is an affordable video recording tool for campaigns
[51:35] Using Gleanin, AnswerStage and other customized tools and graphics to promote awards and events
[57:44] Focus on making video marketing simpler, easier and more cost effective
Vinnu Deshetty “Hello, everyone. Welcome to today’s webinar. We’re excited to have you here as people join. Just a few housekeeping tips. If you are one of the first introduced Gil Gonzalez, he’s behind the scenes. He’s our Zoom tech. If you have any questions or any trouble getting access to two chat and Q&A or any other technical questions. Gil is there to help you as far as credits?”
Vinnu Deshetty “This session has been approved for C, C and C and credits. So as long as you attend this live session and you’re here for the majority of the time, you’ll get one credit our for that will submit that for you probably early next week but we’ll keep you notified. And then this session is being recorded. So sit back and relax and just enjoy the conversation.”
Vinnu Deshetty “We’ll send you a recording afterwards and all of the materials that we’re going to be talking about today are speakers, have some great resources and some great examples to show you. So if you want to revisit them later, we’ll make sure that you have access to those in a couple of days after the recordings available. But let’s get started.”
Vinnu Deshetty “One other housekeeping tip for start. We’re going to be using both chat and Q&A functions here in Zoom. So if you have any questions or speakers at any time, feel free to just post them in there. We’ll get to them as soon as possible. If not, we’re definitely going to save some time at the end to address those questions.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So keep them coming. We love. And also if you have your own story to share, we love hearing from you all as well. So definitely use those. Okay, enough about housekeeping stuff You’ve seen up on the screen. We’ve put up a poll. We just want to kind of hear from you all and kind of see what your experiences are.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Now, this session is all about increasing registrations and engagement, but using your speakers and exhibitors, well, I should say, use of maybe, you know, lining with or partnering with maybe a better way of saying it. But how many of you are currently doing that? Let’s hear from you on that. And then the second question is, what are some of the challenges that have you expected or do you use you’ve experienced or that you’ve you’ve foresee in working with speakers and exhibitors?”
Vinnu Deshetty “So let’s hear from you. We’ll keep this poll open and we’ll revisit the results just in a few. But let me introduce you to great speakers from two ends of the coast. So I thank you both for joining us. We’ve got Emily Golding with MDG, which is a subsidiary of Freeman. And so, Emily, thank you very much. Tell us a little bit about what MTG does.”
Emily Golding “Yeah, and happy to it and thank you for, for having me. I’m excited to talk about how to leverage speakers and exhibitors in your marketing campaign and.”
Vinnu Deshetty Leverage is such a better word.
Emily Golding Mean we will stick with leverage. So MDG is the leading marketing agency focusing on attendee acquisition and association support. So we work with many of the leading events that a lot of you know with and then also a lot of events and spaces that we never even knew existed because there is an association and an event for everything.
Emily Golding “So we’re, we’re based in San Diego, but we have offices in Chicago and Virginia and D.C., a little office over in London. So technically and jumping over champion over on the the other side of the the sea there. And yeah we really just focus a lot on attendee acquisition for events and associations the board members Great.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Thank thanks Emily So Emily’s in San Diego and then we’ve got Rusty with answer stage over in Boston, Massachusetts. Hi, Rusty, welcome. No.”
Rusty Williams I thank you. I appreciate it.
Vinnu Deshetty Tell us a little tell us a little bit about answer stage Happy two.
Rusty Williams “Yeah, I but probably the first thing you mention is part of our DNA. We’ve been through multiple different types of startups and different technology companies, but our DNA has always been based around community and user generated content, and that is, you know, to leverage the efficiencies of having people speak on your behalf. Really taking advantage of word of mouth and answer stage is a continuation of that philosophy.”
Rusty Williams “It’s it’s getting people to speak on your behalf on video. So we’ve developed a platform for collecting responses, transforming them into branded videos that can be shared on social networks. And so that’s the context in which I’m here talking about speakers and exhibitors. So we’ve done that a lot with with different conferences to help them enlist help from speakers and and exhibitors.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Oh, I’m so excited for this conversation. So thank you both for joining me. It’s I like having being able to have someone from the supplier side. You know, let’s face it, you are a supplier. Let’s not avoid it. But you have a lot of experiences with different types of clients. And then, Emily, you as well, but more so be more on the event organizers side of being their advocates and helping them accomplish their goals.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So I appreciate both of you. And let’s start off with, oh, before we go any further, I think we’ve got a good number of participants in this poll, so let’s launch that, share the results with everyone. So that’s great. It seems like a lot of you had already started doing this so awesome. So we can definitely learn from you.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Look forward to hearing from you on that. And those of you who haven’t, no problem. That’s why you’re here and that’s why we’re here. We’re here to share with you some some of the things that have worked and maybe even talk about some of the things that don’t work. We’ll see how the conversation goes today. And then in terms of some of your challenges here, let’s take a look.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Rusty. Emily, are you seeing anything that comes that really brings your eyes to it and say, oh, this is really now I totally understand where they’re coming from.”
Emily Golding “Yeah, I’ll I’ll jump in here. So I wasn’t surprised to see team capacity as it looks like that was the top reason why this has been a challenge for a lot of meeting planners and organizers, and it makes total sense. It a lot of work to launch and to hold an event.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So well, hopefully today we’ve got some easy tricks and tips for everyone to learn from and maybe take away to realize how it can be easy. So great. Thank you, everyone, for sharing in that poll. But let’s start off with I actually like to start off with the historical aspect of just kind of what have we done in the industry to increase registrations and engagement.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Now, I remember back in the day before technology was really technology before there was really Internet. I remember doing a lot of direct mail. You know, there there was a there was a method in a calendar, an algorithm in a kind of a way of, you know, you send out your save the dates, you send out your one month morning and registrations.”
Vinnu Deshetty “But, you know, there was just such a process and it was all direct mail and you were just hoping it landed in the right mailboxes. And and I just remember always waiting for those returns to come back so I can update the database. Let’s talk a little historical, you know, Emily, what have you seen? You know, like in the evolution of where we are today?”
Vinnu Deshetty “But before we got to technology, what were you seeing that we were doing that may not work today?”
Emily Golding “You know, a lot of it. I will I’ll start by saying I love a good direct mail piece where we’re always finding ways to become so much more strategic, though. So we use direct mail to bring in an audience who maybe isn’t you know, they’re more ancillary. They’re not like the core audience. So it’s a little bit more of an extra touch to get offline because all of our other communications are online.”
Emily Golding “I think email really has probably replaced a lot of like what direct mail used to do for for meaning planners and organizers. But so much of the new attendee acquisition comes from the digital channels, and these used to be thought of as a little bit more progressive and different and something you would try and see how it works.”
Emily Golding “And now they’re, you know, they really should just be part of every campaign. You should, you know, we should always have paid media, we should always have paid for digital. And, you know, influencers are becoming a huge part of the marketing plan. So there’s all these things that are that are now becoming kind of the main stage for for how we’re driving attendees.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Are you seeing, at least with your clients, are you seeing people use still using direct mail and what are they doing differently than they, you know, originally just the sending out a postcard. What are you seeing, especially when it comes to speakers and exhibitors?”
Emily Golding “So what we’re seeing is there’s not a lot of the conference printed conference brochures anymore that 25, 30 or more pages that would get designed and printed and mailed. But we’re using direct mail more for special invites. So we have a client who works in retail and they have a list of about 1500 VIP buyers who are part of this group that, you know, exhibitors want to see.”
Emily Golding “Exhibitors want to make sure they have a touchpoint with them. So we pair a sponsorship opportunity where the exhibitors can sponsor the piece and have some involvement in the content of the mailer. And then we send it out to those VIP lists. So it’s it’s, it’s used as a way to get, like I said before, kind of get offline and get something physical in the campaign and make someone have that extra feeling of excitement.”
Emily Golding So that’s one of the ways is it really does come down to kind of strategy and who who might be a group that needs a little bit of an extra touch.
Vinnu Deshetty “And then Rusty, you know, we met actually at ACA Annual because we were both exhibitors there. And I know that you experience, you know, outside of your clients, you experience life as an exhibitor. You know, you’re actually in the seats. So you can actually resonate with what exhibitors are feeling. You know, what are you seeing in terms of what was done before, before like technology was happening and what you’re seeing now in terms of as an experience, as a exhibitor?”
Rusty Williams “Yeah, So that’s a good point. You know, we can certainly feel firsthand the imperative to make the most of your time and your money and what your what your what you’re doing to attend a show as an exhibitor. And you know that really it comes down to getting the word out that will be there. And we would love to see you, talk to you, meet with you and be able to have a chance to show you what we do.”
Rusty Williams “And again, I’m speaking generically That’s that’s in the minds of every exhibitor. And so it’s it’s very common to see exhibitors, you know, posting on LinkedIn and Facebook and Twitter and other places to say they’ll be places. We’ve also done our own emails to say, hey, we’ll look forward to seeing you. In fact, we’re going to have in tech live in in a month and you know, we’re doing an email about that.”
Rusty Williams “So, you know, as an exhibitor and we know as exhibitor that your your whole goal is to make the most of that money that you’re spending. And in turn and then we’ll we talk about this but in turn, that helps people realize the events happening and says, you know, you should be there because things are happening. So that’s that’s a little bit more of a commercial pitch.”
Rusty Williams “And again, we’ll talk about it, but it’s it helps the overall event and it’s attendance and awareness that there will be good people there and things to learn.”
Vinnu Deshetty “And I think that’s really important because you’re spot on when you’re talking about exhibitors wanting more of a commercial. That’s what they’re interested in. That’s the end result. Right? And speakers may have a different a different purpose. Emily, can you speak a little bit to, you know, what are what are speakers and exhibitors looking at and how does an event organizer or meeting planner look at that and say, how do I develop a program that meets their objectives but still meets some kind of I need to get butts in seats?”
Emily Golding “Yeah, no, it’s a really good question. And I think that’s one of the main areas where sometimes this idea of leveraging the speakers in their networks kind of fall short is it’s all about like, how are we engaging them? How are we making it happen? So what Rusty just said, I hope everyone wrote it down and is going to use it in their email communications to exhibitors to try to get them to participate in their promotional programs.”
Emily Golding “But the speakers, it’s a little bit different. We always try to think about the what’s in it, you know, the what’s in it for me where fun, why are they speaking? It’s about leadership. It’s, you know, gaining credibility in the industry. It’s generating more business for the organization. You know, they might have a book and it’s back to thought leadership, but some of them are also just wanting to get more speaking opportunities because that might be part of their own professional development.”
Emily Golding “That’s a huge requirement at the executive level to be speaking at lots of events. So showcasing the fact that they are speaking, it heads on all those points. So what we do is really try to build out our ask with what’s in it for me first, because if we go to a speaker and say, Hey, help us promote the event, we need more attendees, the first thing they’re going to think is, okay, well, that’s your job and I’m busy so I don’t have time to help you.”
Emily Golding “And that’s true. But, you know, when you reframe it and you are talking about the benefits that they will have, it’s it makes a lot more sense for them as to why they would dedicate their time to promoting their participation. So that’s a little bit about the why it.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Rusty, from your angle, when you’ve worked with exhibitors, you know, you mentioned a couple of points of that, the commercial items, but what are you telling exhibitors that they can get out of working in aligning themselves with the organization a little bit more? What messages are you seeing that organizations are using?”
Rusty Williams “Well, it for us, it’s it it comes into giving them a chance to describe what they mean. It’s almost like pre pitching what you would what you would say is people walk by your booth giving your your elevator pitch, giving your summary of what you do and why you’re there and what you’re looking to get out of the out of the event as an exhibitor.”
Rusty Williams “So those you know, those kind of points are things that you can convey using the kind of materials or the videos that we help people create. So it does come down in a few case and we’ve had a few clients say, well, we don’t want to be super commercial, but when you think about it, that’s what that’s what an exhibit is doing there.”
Rusty Williams “They want to say we’re one of the best companies doing this and this industry, and you should come by and take a look at our product. I don’t I don’t think that’s a bad thing because that is what a trade show floor. That’s what a exhibitor floor is all about. And so it’s really just speaking to that. We love to hear from you.”
Rusty Williams What products and services are you will you be exhibiting? Do you have any news that you’d like to announce prior to the show? What is your background? What types of panels and events are you participating in? All those things can help an exhibitor build a more personal connection with the people who’ll be attending and I think are all valuable.
Vinnu Deshetty “Yeah, I like the theme. So let’s start off in the beginning. Let’s pretend I’m a meeting planner. Well, you know, to pretend I’m a meeting planner and I. I want to do something. I want to do something. Change it up. I want to invite speakers and let’s focus on speakers and then we can talk about exhibitors. Because I do think the messaging is is different for both.”
Vinnu Deshetty “But am I where do I begin in terms of do I just reach out to people? Do I need to think about what my strategy is, what my benefits? When you start with the client, where where do you guys start?”
Emily Golding “Yeah, we one of the first things that we do is we ask or recommend adding language to the speaker contract. So that is like the number one way to allow for a seamless and smooth promotional experience, because if it’s in the contract, speakers know they’re going to be getting these tools. They’re going to have to use them. If it’s not in your contract, that’s okay.”
Emily Golding “It’s something to add in the future. So if it’s know, regardless of whether it’s in the contract, we you know, we want we want to recommend that for the future. But if it’s not, it isn’t like a nonstarter. You can still engage your speakers. So we think about the strategy. So one of the first things that we’ll do is look at what tools we want to use that make no sense.”
Emily Golding “We, you know, we work with answer stage all the time. I think Rusty and I are emailing each other like once a week at minimum. So, you know, we look, what is it going to make sense to bring in video to this promotional program we look at if we should be doing a you know, another tool that we use is glean in where it’s actually just image based promotional graphics that are part of their registrations system.”
Emily Golding “So as soon as someone registers, they get the option to turn this graphic out. Speakers can customize that. So we kind of think about that and then we think about what experience the exhibitor excuse me, the speakers already have. So do they have a portal? Is that where they’re going to share their call, you know, their updated deck and you know, the different things that they need after they go through the call for proposals face.”
Emily Golding “And we want to make it very, very seamless. The number one thing is making this easier for our speakers, I think what was it? There were one of the answers that was on the pull is like, it’s hard. You know, it’s hard to get people engaged. They’re not interested. So making it easiest is the best way to do that.”
Emily Golding “So working with your programing and education teams, they’re the ones that are in contact with the speakers. They’re the ones that we leverage to send out an email asking them to participate, explaining how to do it, all of that. So we get really detailed in how the asks happen and that is what drives to more results.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Do you find it just out of curiosity? You know, when you I love what that you start with the speaker release or speaker contract and are you finding that a lot of people just haven’t looked at their contract in the you know in a while is just out of curiosity, kind of off topic on topic, but are you saying that that when they look at their speaker contract, they’re also looking they’re like, oh, wow, there’s a lot of other things that we need, just need update for for the you know, just a just to technology and what we’re doing now.”
Emily Golding “You know, it’s gone over pretty well for most of the clients or we do have that in the contract. So one of one of the clients that I’m thinking of is ABC. It’s the International Booking Exposition, and they have about 150 speakers and all of the speaker contracts required that speakers participate in the promotional program and 76% of their speakers completed answer stage videos to answered all the questions that we had in the prompts, shared them on their socials and so yes, there’s 24% or whatever, who didn’t?”
Emily Golding “But it’s not like we’re going to go back and, you know, bug them about it or whatever and force them to do it. It’s it’s, it’s something where if they don’t get to it, that’s okay. But if the majority of the speakers are doing it, just having that in the language really helps them kind of know know what’s coming in advance.”
Vinnu Deshetty “In any curiosity. I mean, did you explore why the 24% didn’t do it, or are there some assumptions that you made that kind of made it okay that they didn’t participate?”
Emily Golding “Yeah, there’s a few reasons. So a lot of times the bigger keynotes and those who might be paid to speak just won’t do it without an extra financial component. And, you know, so in that case that’s, that’s okay. That’s not that that’s something we really would leave to our clients to decide how they want to handle with each speaker.”
Emily Golding “Another reason is people are just busy. They just don’t no matter how many easy we make it, they just, you know, they don’t have the time or whatever. And then some people are kind of camera shy. They feel a little uncomfortable even though they might be comfortable speaking in front of a, you know, potentially hundreds of people at an event.”
Emily Golding They they’re better extemporaneously than they are on recorded video. So those are some of the reasons.
Vinnu Deshetty “I definitely have notice. And I’d love to see what the our guests today are attendees that are joining us. If you all have seen where you’ve had speakers that are awesome at the live delivery. But when it comes to recordings, it just becomes it’s really hard for them. And I sometimes wonder, is it a technical issue or is a combination of being perfectionist?”
Vinnu Deshetty “And, you know, but I definitely have seen that. But, you know, with that in mind, you know, you to overcome some of those challenges in making it easy and this is both to you and Rusty, because, Rusty, you have a platform that makes it easy for people. What are some of the things that you do to make it easy and how do you how do you communicate that out?”
Vinnu Deshetty “I guess the communication piece with Emily is more for you. But Rusty, talk to us a little bit about some of the things from a technical standpoint that we can make it easy for speakers.”
Rusty Williams “Sure. So the what Emily said I think is really, really important and it’s in our our chat already with one of the first things is that they’re too busy. There’s always sort of this resistance that if you are asking for more time than they can really afford, it, they’re just going to go do different things. So everything that we’ve thought about and everything we’ve invested in is to make that experience as super quick as possible so you can use your phone or you can use your computer, you click a link, you get a prompt with a question, you answer the question within a minute or two.”
Rusty Williams “That’s all we ask for. You get a chance to look at that, review that, make sure you’re happy with it, and then click submit and you’re done. You move on. So making that as seamless and as quick as possible is is our number one goal. But we’ve realized more recently, and I think Emily mentioned that there’s there’s a is a component of camera shyness.”
Rusty Williams “There’s a component of like, well, what exactly will I talk about? So we’ve actually started adding more kinds of questions and more kinds of prompts that aren’t just, hey, you know, look forward to seeing you at the show. They’re actually digging in to what their area of expertise is. What is the topic? What are some of the key takeaways that you’ll be there will be from your panel?”
Rusty Williams “What are what are some of the trends that are you think are affecting this business and you’ll be talking about so that you you get people thinking about, you know, what they’re really good at and that is like responding to and digging into their area of expertise. And the one final thing I’ll mention on this is that in addition to that, we’ve now added a thing on that record screen where it says get key talking points.”
Rusty Williams “And like most technology companies, we’ve done that by integrating with AI so that you can submit the question the AI thing will, we’ll actually bring it back as part of a prompt to give your brain kind of these things that will make it easier to to provide a quick and an insightful response.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Oh, I’m really curious about the air. I want to come back to that a little bit later because I think there’s a lot of conversation, especially in the scientific, academic and the journalistic world, about, you know, is AI ethical and how do you do it? And but that’s a whole nother topic. But I’m hoping we’ll have some time at the end.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Now, Emily, with that, knowing that the technology is easy, how do you communicate that out to speakers saying don’t be afraid and, you know, encouraging them? What are some of those talking points that you give them and how do you communicate it?”
Emily Golding “Well, one of the biggest ways that we do it is to try to integrate it into what they already have to do to prepare for an event. And so this goes with both speakers and with exhibitors. One one client that we work with, it’s not in my department, but I was talking to one of my colleagues and asking her for her perspective on on what she’s done in this area.”
Emily Golding “And they they work with a platform called Cadmium for their virtual events. And in the speaker portal, they’re actually able to have a task list for the speakers to complete because it’s not just promotional video. They also have to share their lives and their run through and things like that. So so they have like a little checkbox and then they have this automation that emails the speakers and says, Hey, you have to fill out your video and in it.”
Emily Golding “And that is the venue where we would talk about how easy it is. So whether you have an automated checklist, you know, email thing that’s super cool or just a normal speaker portal, it’s really in there. And so we’ll start out with language about, you know, this should only take you 3 minutes and here are the questions that we’re going to ask you.”
Emily Golding “And all you have to do is and so the questions and we’ll do the rest, you know, we just we really want to make sure that they understand what’s happening and what’s expected. And that’s helped tremendously. I think the other thing is and I know you know, I think one of my clients is on who will know exactly what I’m talking about.”
Emily Golding “But a lot of it comes down to really empowering your programing team to be able to talk to the people that they work with all the time. They’re the ones who are really engaging these speakers and they have the relationships. So that message coming from them goes so much further than like, you know, coming from the marketing team or something that they don’t know.”
Emily Golding “So that’s one that’s, that’s one of the biggest ways that we we do that.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Great. And then, Emily, we actually have a question here. So on as you want to, if you could share the checklist tool, the automated checklist tool that you used.”
Emily Golding “Yeah, it’s called cadmium. It’s they’re a virtual event platform. And I think that they but they also have a feature for Speaker management. So some of our clients use them just for speaker management.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Yeah, I know we’ve worked with a lot of speaker management systems that do offer something like that, where you do have the checklist, but let’s say you don’t have a speaker management system. You know, how how can you make that easier? You know, like are you or do you have like a document that’s just dedicated of like, here’s what you need to do?”
Vinnu Deshetty “Like, what are you in? Are you doing that by email? I know you were talking about getting your programing team involved, which I love right? I think sometimes we all work in silos and try not to break that down. But what are some of the actual concrete things that we can actually give a speaker or an exhibitor that says if you don’t have an automated list, what can you do?”
Emily Golding “So we do webinars quite, quite a bit. Exhibitors really tend to appreciate that because a lot of times our exhibitor contacts are on the sales side. Now. We would love for the marketing folks of those companies to come in to the mics, but that doesn’t always happen. So when it is the sales team who’s responsible for a little bit more of what you would call, you know, traditionally call marketing activity of promoting, promoting them social media and whatnot, we do a webinar, we have four for one client.”
Emily Golding “I’m thinking about one event in particular that I’m thinking in the food service space. We have a beautiful full page for the exhibitors that has just every promotional tool they could ever want, and it’s automated. So all they have to do is put in their exhibitor booth number and like bam, they’ve got a press release template, a social graphic link to do their videos, display ads, social.”
Emily Golding “I mean, just everything. So it’s pretty exciting. But if they don’t have that webinar, it’s a little bit harder for them to understand, well, how do I use this if they’re just poking around on their exhibitor portal and kind of clicking into things like, yes, they find it, but our job is to make sure we’re prompting them to know that it’s available to them and how to use it.”
Emily Golding “So we do that via webinar and we, you know, we send out emails, we explain what we’re asking. We probably have to send like two or three emails for it to really get through. And then, you know, I think more the more of them that do it, then they all see it online and then they say, okay, I should be doing that too.”
Emily Golding “And it kind of, you know, it helps drive a little bit more traction.”
Vinnu Deshetty “You know, I’m a big believer in finding the people that are big advocates of the organization and letting them be brand ambassadors for us. Have you done anything like that to get things kicked off? Because I think I loved what you were saying in terms of, you know, when they see other people doing it, they’re like, wait a minute, I should be doing that, too.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Are you do you ever work with clients to say, hey, find the one or two or three or however many people that really believe in you and really want to help you and get them started to do something like that and become it’s almost influencer marketing. I think this is one of the things that we talked about before.”
Vinnu Deshetty What you’re talking about here is really influencer marketing in our event world right now. You talk a little bit about that.
Emily Golding “Yeah. So that some of the kind of lowest hanging fruit in that area is pulling in your exhibitor advisory committees or attendee advisory committees. So a lot of events, the meeting planners and organizers will set up some kind of committee of exhibitors that have been coming for a long time, newer exhibitors, bigger, smaller, this kind of group that represents a variety of the types of exhibitors who are coming to your event.”
Emily Golding So leveraging them is a great way to start because they are advocates of the event. They want your event to succeed. Another way that we do this is that we do have some most of our events do have some of those speakers who are just hugely connected to the event. They really are kind of stakeholders of of the event.
Emily Golding “And so to your point, you know, asking them to kind of be the first ones to start utilizing some of these tools can help to build that momentum.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Now, Rusty, as well, I want you to put on your exhibitor hat as an exhibitor, you know, how how do you like to receive information in terms of like, here are tools for you. Do you like the idea of an automated checklist webinars or some of the other tools that Emily was talking about? Emails. What resonates with you as an exhibitor?”
Rusty Williams “No, I think that’s right. I think some kind of checklist in electronic form is is the way that most people I think will manage that. It’s, you know, again, I’m not speaking of the topic of like how to use instances. I’m thinking like, what do we do when we’re exhibitors? And the reality is you’re always super busy. You’ve got a checklist of do we have power, do we have Wi-Fi, do we have?”
Rusty Williams “And you’re kind of thinking about all this stuff that’s kind of logistics and getting there and being there that that marketing track may not get as much attention as it should. And really, it’s the most important track. Like how, how, how do we get people to come see us and visit us and get the most out of this experience.”
Rusty Williams “So all I can do is just reinforce on Emily saying that I think those kind of electronic checklists, emails, reminders and super simple ways to click through and complete those, you know, create those things is is going to be the secret.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Yeah. And then for both of you, you know, in terms of sending out a speaker kit, I mean, that happens very early on with months, months before the the conference happens or an exhibitor kit for or a trade show. So what are we looking at in time frame. Is there a timeline that you recommend of when it’s the optimal time to put it in front of someone and like when to remind them and when to make sure, like, you know, I would think, you know, like a day before the conference, it’s probably too late, right?”
Vinnu Deshetty “Because it goes registration way in advance. So what is Emily, we would start with you. What what do you recommend in terms of what that time frame looks like?”
Emily Golding “Yeah, that’s a really good question. And there isn’t a wrong time frame except, you know, the day after the event. But, you know, we always try to get this set up as early as we can because depending on the tool, there are integrations with the registration system. So the social sharing that I was talking about earlier. Glennon We are our teams manage that for quite a few clients and we’ll try to set that up registration so that when it launches, it’s out there and everyone who registers from that point forward has that little button at the end that says, you know, share that I’m attending that X, Y, Z show.”
Emily Golding “And, you know, and so that’s that’s great. But the reality is that we don’t see a lot of pick up until the last four weeks of the show. So you can have a six month registration cycle and you can have all these tools and these assets out. You may not see a huge amount of usage, but don’t get discouraged because it’s just the magic happens the last four weeks and it’s so hard for marketers and meeting planners to just like not know what’s going to happen and just wait for everything to happen at the end.”
Emily Golding “But it does and so having everything ready allows for that. But you really will get more pick up towards the last six, two, 6 to 3 weeks.”
Vinnu Deshetty “And do you see a difference between, you know, I think the pandemic switched everything for us, right? The time frames are all all of our calculations and formulas and spreadsheets are out of date. But are you seeing a difference between getting participation from speakers and exhibitors different from in-person hybrid and virtual? Is it different or are you still trying to figure it?”
Vinnu Deshetty “You know, figure out if there is a trend?”
Emily Golding “You know, that’s a good question. I personally haven’t really seen a big difference. I you know, I think that we see the more successful events that are virtual being conference driven. And so those do have more speakers and exhibitors who have kind of stories to tell as opposed to an in-person event that has a little bit more oftentimes trade trade show component.”
Emily Golding “And they have something to show, right? So they have a story around what they’re what they’re exhibiting. So it’s it’s interesting, but I haven’t seen a huge difference between the two.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So I know you both have some great examples to show us of things of things that you’ve done that have been successful. And I’d love for you to talk about not only why it was successful in terms of bringing in registrations and increasing the engagement, but I wanted to also talk about the complexity of setting something like this up, because I know that, you know, as a planner, we’ve been thrown a lot of technology at us.”
Vinnu Deshetty “You know, the the industry rate is anywhere from 5 to 4 where planners are using anywhere from four, 5 to 14 different apps to produce an event. That’s a lot of different processes, a lot of different technology to to take in, learn, adapt too. So love to, you know, as you’re sharing this talk about what it means for the planner too because I think we a lot of time think about oh what are the results of what what does it take to get those results?”
Vinnu Deshetty “So and Emily, I know that you’ve got some good ones. Let’s start with you.”
Emily Golding “Yeah. Newport to my screen share here. And everything is so small, of course. Okay, here we go. So I’ll talk a little bit about this. I think I talked a little bit about the idea. Let’s see, is it working? Oh, sure. It’s like you don’t want to ask the question, can you see my screen? But if you don’t, then like, how do.”
Vinnu Deshetty You know?
Emily Golding “So yeah, I talked a little bit about idea earlier and I’ll, I’ll kind of give a little overview of case study of what we did here. So we attacked the strategy of leveraging our speakers and our exhibitors and our attendees in different ways. So one of the one of the things that I think you know, and not to be like plugging the agency too much here, but is that it is nice to have an agency partner take care of some of these things because if you haven’t done this before or you don’t have a dedicated team, it takes a long time to kind of think through these strategies, build all the assets, promote them, make”
Emily Golding sure that they’re getting used. So what we do is we start with thinking about our strategy. We talked about that a little bit earlier with idea. What we did was we did a partner promotion kit for our exhibitors. We used answer stage to engage our speakers and then we used Glennon to engage the entire community. So we’ll talk a little bit about the pipe kit.
Emily Golding “So this page here had almost 8000 views during the campaign. They don’t have eight well, they don’t have 8000 exhibitors, so that’s great. That means multiple. It means the exhibitors are visiting it more than once and really utilizing the tool. And what we’ve found with this campaign and why it was so successful is because we worked with Merritt to create a discount code with the actual booth number of the exhibitor.”
Emily Golding “So the exhibitor could get a code like I don’t remember if it was discount, it was free or discount. I think it was discount. So, you know, it would be like idea and then whatever the number was and it was automated. And Merritt then sent data back to the exhibitors for how much it was used and who used it.”
Emily Golding “So that was really enticing for the exhibitors and they could just set it all up here on this landing page. And then what we did was we led them to the actual asset section, which is that next area, and that’s where you got your banner ads, your social graph that your social graphics, your press release, all these different things.”
Emily Golding “So yeah, that one, that one was a really successful program for exhibitors. And I saw a couple people mention an answer to that question that exhibitors don’t seem interested, and this is one way to really get them much more interested, make it super easy and give them something that they can then give to their customers to be seen as helping their customers more.”
Vinnu Deshetty “And this reminds me of back in the old day we used to customize printing of postcards, like 50 postcards we’d send out to an exhibitor and say, These are free trade show passes. Send them out to your people. And that would be, you know, putting a lot of faith in that. They’d actually, you know, send them out, address them and send them out.”
Vinnu Deshetty So this digital version is awesome.
Emily Golding “Yeah. And I used to be one of those exhibitors. I had my whole show notebook and my printouts and I had a paper checklist and I had my Sharpie and, you know, doing all that. So I totally know that other side and how it’s really on the right hands for exhibitor team. It’s like, okay, well.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So great. So now you have this, you sent it out but once and you send it out to an exhibitor, what does the exhibitor actually have to do? Do they have to do anything or is it do they press a button? Do they actually have to upload a customer list? What’s what happens after you send out this email?”
Emily Golding “Yeah, this is it’s a little hard to see because it’s it’s kind of small, but the language on the landing page kind of explains for that explains what they should do. They would get to this page either through their portal or through emails that we send them. And then once they’re here, what they do is they have to they have to get a the code set up with merit.”
Emily Golding “So there’s instructions on how to get that code. They really just have to kind of put in a request and then the code generates and that’s that. So it was very, very easy to do it was very easy to do for the exhibitors. It took a lot of effort on the backend to make that happen, but it was it was worth it.”
Emily Golding “And then what the exhibitors can do is they can send out the landing page to their audience this, this one on the on the left, my left to their contacts via email, like maybe they do a personal invite to their customer list or something and say, Hey, I have a code for you to register. I guess it’s 20% off at eBay.”
Emily Golding “You know, here’s all the information. And they’re actually taking this piece and using it as a communication tool to touch base with their customers. And we do hear pushback every once in a while from exhibitors that say, well, you know, your job as the organizer is to get attendees. Our job is just to be there. And the response to that is, yes, absolutely, that is the case.”
Emily Golding “But if you aren’t inviting your customers to your booth, guess what your competitors are. So it’s really about protecting that business that you already have and making sure that the people that you work with are coming to see you when they’re there. And so that’s when we go back to the kind of what’s in it. For me, that’s one of the key, key points without hiccup.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Now, you were talking about that. It took a lot of work behind the scenes to make this happen. Are you talking about a lot of work technically, like from a technology aspect or from the organizer aspect? Like what made that part Like what made it hard for me make it lengthy?”
Emily Golding “It’s just the the time and communication that goes into building anything custom when it comes to like comp codes and discount codes and then having the integrations work so that you can get that code on the landing page. And it’s just it’s something where we, our web developers, built this page custom and worked with that with merits. It was like I think it was experienced at the time.”
Emily Golding “But anyway, you know, working with the registration vendor and to really kind of build the back end experience. So it’s not necessarily difficult, but it does require a certain level of technical knowhow.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Now I do know that there are platforms out there that do offer this that will integrate with the registration, it’ll integrate with your exhibitor management system, or if you can just upload exhibitor list. But there are platforms out there that can make this a lot easier. And it’s you know, this is the amazing thing about technology, right? Every day it changes and it can make you know, I think what’s great about tech companies is they’re identifying what we’re struggling with and they’re figuring out how to make easier.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So definitely look out for those companies that can do that. I don’t think it you know, it’s kudos to you all that you have the tech expertise and teams to make this happen. But I think there are companies out there that can do this. Okay, this is great. I really like I like how the colors are popping in the messages there in and how often how far in advance were you sending this out?”
Emily Golding “We sent this out when registration opened, So we do a lot of the work before Reg even opens on on the side. It’s it’s all about kind of preparing for once Red does open. Of course, the work doesn’t stop when red does open as everyone on this call probably knows. But we want to have the assets as bright as ready as early as possible.”
Emily Golding “It doesn’t always have to be ready, Reg open depending on how long your registration cycle is. But I would say you need at least three months for this to really be an effective campaign because it takes a while to get exhibitors to start using it. It takes a lot of kind of follow up to to remind them of the benefits of doing it.”
Emily Golding “And exhibitors are busy. They have a lot on their plates. They have other shows. They go to. They have their kind of day to day jobs. So we want to make sure we’re giving them the time to use, utilize the assets when it makes the most sense for them.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Okay. And I love how both you and Rosie talk about like the the what’s in it for me. So and I think you’ve been consistent in these examples that you’re showing us is talking about how this benefits you, you as the exhibitor. But great. Thanks, Emily, and thank you. Have some more for us, right?”
Emily Golding “Yeah. So this this next image, this is from the most recent IBM campaign. The other one was from 2018. In case you’re wondering whether the campaign concept looks different. So, Rusty, you can probably explain a little bit about what this view is. But this is this is sort of the first experience that our speakers have when they hit the Amber Stage landing page.”
Vinnu Deshetty “And Rusty, can you tell us what it stands for?”
Rusty Williams And Emily Kent is the International Bakers brother.
Emily Golding “Yeah, it’s the International Baking Industry Exposition.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Oh, interesting. Oh, that’s got to be yummy.”
Rusty Williams Lots of good food. So you see the graphic there? That’s actually a piece of sour bread. I think that’s been taken right out of the oven as a balloon. So it’s kind of cool.
Vinnu Deshetty That’s cool.
Emily Golding “So, like, food shows, you know?”
Rusty Williams “Exactly what what Emily showing here is what we call a landing page. And it goes back to what I was saying earlier, that we kind of give a diversity of prompts and questions that people can choose to answer that aren’t just, you know, why are you looking forward to the show? You know, we will we will ask something open ended like that.”
Rusty Williams “But, you know, an example here’s what’s crucial for the baking industry professional success in 2022 and beyond. So you’re you know that’s that’s the fourth question down that’s just an example of something that’s not like, hey, promote yourself at the show or promote it as adding value by making providing content that’s value at that moment in time no matter what.”
Rusty Williams “So you see that on LinkedIn, you see that on Twitter. That question and that topic is of interest to you right then. And so I’d go back a little bit to what you’re asking about. What’s the time frame for this? What’s the the pace at which this happens? I mean, you can ask that question three, four or five months ahead of the ahead of the conference and get people to answer it because it’s just more of like a topical thought leadership approach than it is.”
Rusty Williams “Hey, seen the idea. And I think that’s a that’s kind of important way of looking at it. You know, we’re we’re we want to try and create a dialog that’s happening ongoing not just in the 4 to 6 weeks beforehand so that that’s really kind of going beyond what this is. It’s really just a series of prompts that send to the speakers and exhibitors to say, Here’s some things you can answer.”
Rusty Williams “You click on them, you see the camera prompt, you can record your answer what’s one or two or 3 minutes long, and you put your computer or phone away and you’re done.”
Vinnu Deshetty “I love the fact that you’ve taken the thought process out of this, out of it, right. Like, I don’t have to think about what do I talk about? You’ve given it to me. You write it very easy. And I think that’s a huge challenge. Right? Well.”
Rusty Williams When you say us that actually this was created by Emily and her team. So there’s there’s another role for that person who’s in the marketing team or the or the agency. Although we do try to encourage our clients to think about things in at least two tracks. And the two tracks are there’s a technology track and there’s an editorial track.
Rusty Williams “And that editorial track is what topics will be interesting to people, what will prompt people to respond? Kinds of questions like this will be useful. And again, you know, we were kind of realizing that that that process, that editorial track can be assisted by some of the new technologies that are emerging now.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Emily, I love this in terms of internally with the organization, like with IBRD or any other organization, who is coming up with these questions? Is it the meeting planner? Is it programing, Is it marketing? Who’s actually drumming up these questions? Because This is this is awesome. And yeah.”
Emily Golding “Yeah, this.”
Vinnu Deshetty Is this just this land on.
Emily Golding “This lands on well, it lands on my desk and my teams desk. So we the way that we work is we have a dedicated account person who works with clients or a team of account people, but we’re not, we don’t look at ourselves as just like, you know, pushing a project from here to there. We really are invested in the strategy of the campaign.”
Emily Golding “So we act sort of as an extension of the marketing team of our clients. So we know what is important. We know we know the trends, we know the challenges, and we’re crafting all of that into the campaigns that we’re doing. So we will build out these questions kind of knowing, you know, for instance, last year the the every industry was struggling.”
Emily Golding But then we work with someone in the restaurant industry and they that industry got hit so hard by the pandemic. And so the questions that we developed there were really around kind of how have you come out of this? Like what are some of the biggest learnings that was really more intended to be inspirational and positive and just kind of helping the industry move in a new direction?
Emily Golding “So all of that comes into our minds when we’re developing all these questions, but it’s really it’s all when when we’re involved, it’s always the person who is closest to that campaign.”
Vinnu Deshetty “So let’s pretend I don’t have the budget or I can’t use the answer stage or a product like answer stage. How can I accomplish this? Can I you know, what are some ideas that I can push this out?”
Rusty Williams “It’s not possible. Oh, sorry about that.”
Emily Golding “No, I mean, no, I think it’s a good point, because the reality is, is that we’ve tried to do these types of things before. We had a tool and it was like, open up your zoom and change this setting and do this and do that and smile and then hit record and, you know, it’s just we tried to use other tools that existed and it was just so clunky and difficult that it didn’t, you know, it didn’t really pan out.”
Emily Golding “And sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t. But then you get people doing it on their phone sideways or people that you know. So you get all these kinds of weird, different types of footage. So we is if budget is a concern, you know, actually answer stages I think is quite affordable compared to like super customized partner and promotion tool kit, something like this.”
Emily Golding “But we also work with Glen and there’s other brands and go does this. Sometimes we just do this without without a plug in, but we can stick to social graphics. They take less time to produce so you don’t have to do the trimming of the videos and putting them together. So I guess you also used a Glennon plugin and what they and we do this too for a lot of campaigns.”
Emily Golding We use this also when we have international component components of the campaign because it is really hard to market internationally. So the way to do that is to actually get advocates and delegates to share the message for us. And doing that with social graphics is an easy way. So that’s that’s one of the other ways.
Vinnu Deshetty “Yeah, let’s just repeat some of the software products you were talking about for the video. Jessica was asking if you can share the name of the software for the video recording.”
Emily Golding “Well, the video recording I was saying answer stage that the only other thing that we’ve done is we’ve tried to use Zoom like the zoom that we all use all the time, and that hasn’t been as effective.”
Vinnu Deshetty “And I think there is. I mean, yeah, you have to work within the parameters and the budgets and the time that you have available, and there’s always ways. But I think, you know, as someone that’s been on the exhibitor side, on the speaker side, anything that can make it easier, like the automation of the technology is what is so appealing because you’ll probably get more buy in, more participation into it.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Right? But if you don’t have that, I think the key what I would think about is just how do you what are the things that you can do? Make make it easier, like supplying those questions and offering just really strong guidelines Because I know recently I was asked, Oh, give me a logo. And I’m like, well, what size and what format?”
Vinnu Deshetty “It’s a 100 questions, of course, you know, like in marketing, we think those things. But you know, the more guidelines you can give, great. And then Lisa here has recommended gather voices as well. So thank you for that. Um, okay. Emily, do you have other examples to show us?”
Emily Golding “Well, the one other example, this is just kind of a different use case. So this is the National Restaurant Association Show, and we set up a variety of different kind of peer to peer programs with for this event. And one of them is that they’re they have a very prestigious award program. So the Kitchen Innovation Program and Fab, which is food and beverage Innovations.”
Emily Golding “And so the awardees, there’s you know, there’s a handful of awardees, and each one of these programs, we give them a customized tool kit through Glennon where they can that they’re an awardee and they can drop in their logo, they can drop in an image of their product. They can kind of customize it in their own way. Sometimes they don’t use our tool kit or sometimes they use the actual source files and make it themselves.”
Emily Golding “And however they do, it is great because the point is we want them to be able to have tools to congratulate, you know, the different divisions within their organization who have come up with these products and these solutions. So that’s a pretty exciting program that we really like now. Oh, sorry.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Go ahead. No, go ahead. Go ahead.”
Emily Golding “Let’s say we also have situations where we’ll have a lot of panel education with speakers. So when you’re creating a graphic and you want to show headshots and things like that, it can get messy when you have four people on a panel. So we have, you know, different different setups in our option list to make sure that we can kind of accommodate for some of the different names that come in.”
Emily Golding “And then just to keep it a little bit more simple, we also have graphics, this one in here in the middle, and that’s just something that we send out to a lot of our partners. So their association partners or media partners, and they can use these graphics to invite their, you know, their networks and their contacts and all they have to do is drop it into whatever social channel they want.”
Emily Golding And and so it just makes it really easy.
Vinnu Deshetty “Yeah. You know, I do want to show everybody you’ve got some great video examples of what this actually looks like.”
Rusty Williams “Yeah, I’ll I’ll show that. But let me just quickly go back. I was joking before that. It’s not possible. Emily just proved is there’s there’s a bunch of bunch of things you can do And really the most popular is, is just sharing a graphics with headshots and those become really simple things you can do. Somebody else mentioned gathered voices, gather voices.”
Rusty Williams “They’re a good option to look at for video promotion. The other kind of hand rolled video approach is what Emily mentioned, where you just capture a Zoom session and you you you take that and use that as an asset that you share. And just one quick point on that for all these approaches is one of the thing I think that can help is that you as a as a as a conference organizer, share this through your account and then tag the people who are who you’re featuring that has the huge benefit of them being notified on LinkedIn or somewhere else.”
Rusty Williams “And able to just reshare it. That means they don’t have to do any extra work beyond that effort. So once you have this asset, if you make sure that you share it through your primary social account and, tag those people, then that becomes easier for them to to reshare and help amplify that.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Yeah. And you know and you don’t I love that because you don’t have to do everybody right like if you if time is an issue for your own for your own team and you just can’t possibly do all of them, then pick the most influential people and do that. Right. I like that. And now before you jump into this, I actually have a data question or data geek in me wants to know when you’re doing all of these different different activities, how much of the data are you looking at afterwards?”
Vinnu Deshetty Are you looking at how responsive are people? Are people participating? Are they registering from those activities? Like what are some of those data points that you’re looking at?
Emily Golding “Yeah, I can I can give a quick answer here. So we look at all the data points that we can. So when we use anther stage, we look at how many videos have been completed, what are completing them. If we’re opening it up to someone beyond speakers, then once they’re posted, I think, Rusty, I feel like you just came out with a new feature that allows us to to kind of track a little bit better who’s using them and how they’re getting launched.”
Emily Golding “But that’s something that we look at. And then when we do more of those graphic posts, we have data on how many people have clicked on each one of the shared assets. So on some of those that I was showing you for the National Restaurant Association show, we’ve already seen like over 300 different engagements on on the pieces that have been showed so far.”
Emily Golding And I know that that will go up drastically because we’re we’re getting closer to the to the final push. So those are some of the pieces that we look at.
Vinnu Deshetty “Right. Okay, Rusty, show us what you got.”
Rusty Williams “Sure. I mean, these are just examples of different videos of people talking about the events that they’ll be at. So I really just wanted to show the variety of different kinds of ways that’s used by different clients. This client’s called Innovation Women, and it kind of flips around the model a little bit where they’re actually showcasing people who are potential speakers at conferences.”
Rusty Williams “So they have introduce yourself. What’s your what’s your your hallmark topic like? What is it that you’re most known for? And they go through a series of those kind of questions. And people, you know, people can now or your signature talk, they can review that as a conference organizer and get a sense of who they are and whether they’re appropriate for their event.”
Rusty Williams “Then there’s things as simple as, you know, what’s why why am I attending this show? What is it that that that my company gets out of it? And in all cases, these are all just videos with people who are either exhibiting or or, or speaking. And so that, you know, this is really just the the variety of different ways that this happens.”
Rusty Williams “And again, the really interesting thing or the really important thing is that they all just took their phone, recorded this quick response to this question, and then all the rest, all the development, all the production, all of the animations and logos and other things that get added were added automatically through the technology we’ve developed as a cloud based platform.”
Rusty Williams “So it’s no it’s no production work other than collecting the response to sending a link to somebody and saying, please answer this question. Describe the topic you’re presenting and the key takeaways for attendees she she records that it gets added into this. This template that you know, has is designed specifically for the earth or what is this the American Association or orthodontist or, you know, or whatever else.”
Rusty Williams “And so all that happening automatically. Again, as you said, it’s sort of we really been thinking, what is it that takes time and how can we reduce that amount of time that people are investing in? So that’s that’s where we we focus our attention is how do we make video marketing simpler, easier and more cost effective. But the reality is, I mean, even even we did what Emily showed, like we we took a graphic.”
Rusty Williams “We we shared it on LinkedIn. It’s a static graphic. And that is a very easy and efficient way to do it. So I kind of look at things like Continuum. It’s like it’s from a simple text post to a graphically enhanced post to a video post. And all of those have increasing, I think, levels of impact, but they also have different levels of of expertise needed to make them happen.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Well, we are almost out of time here. I thank you. Thank you both for sharing so much. I mean, you really walked us through why we should be doing this. What are some of the challenges that we’ve were facing as organizers and then also how to overcome some of those challenges that exhibitors in speakers are facing. So I appreciate them.”
Vinnu Deshetty “But before we leave, I just wanted to ask both of you, you know, Emily, what’s the one, one tip that you want to give our attendees today? What do you want them to leave with?”
Emily Golding “Absolutely. Think about how you should use, how you should leverage. Well, we’ll go for full circle. They’re your speakers and your exhibitors to help promote the event and make it easy for them to do that. However, however that ends up happening.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Awesome. And then how about you, Rusty? What’s the one thing?”
Rusty Williams “Well, I I’ll go back to the very first thing I said is like a lot of what we’ve developed in the technology developed have been all around forming a community. And I think if you think about your event as a community that exists throughout time then, and that giving those people voices, giving those people the ability be enthusiastic about and be influential in driving attendance, I think is a is a great thing.”
Rusty Williams “And it it goes back to what I said about it. I don’t think a it’s a it’s a six week window. It’s actually can be a 12 month window where you are gathering information, building awareness and sort of reinforcing that those connections that happen in person or online through these through these other efforts.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Well, awesome. Well, thank you both for sharing all of your knowledge and your experience and our guests that joined us today. Thank you for joining us. I hope it was information informational for you and you’ve got some things that you can take away, make a bigger impact on your next event or conference or trade show. If you all have any questions, you know how to reach us.”
Vinnu Deshetty “We throw up those contacts slides. Suburbicon knows how to reach us. I’ve given you QR codes for each one of our speakers today. Feel free to reach out to us. We’d love to help you out. But and again, I’ll be reaching out to you all for the recording and all of the great resources today, but hope you have some great things to take away.”
Vinnu Deshetty “Thank you again to our speakers. Go make your life simpler. Don’t work harder, work smarter through tech. So go do tech. Thank you all for joining us.”
Emily Golding Hi.
Rusty Williams “Thanks much, you guys.”