What happens when you throw an awesome conference on technology within the event industry? A whole lot of tweets!
The Eventbrite crew was impressed with the range of content, and based on feedback from the backchannel other attendees were too. Event organizers learned how to effectively market events and increase attendance, how to learn from event planning mistakes, how to gain sponsorships, the do’s and don’ts of Twitter at an event, how much to charge attendees, and the difference between conventions and conferences.
One tactic that was fresh and cool: instead of a Powerpoint, Myles Weissleder of SF New Tech spiced things up by speaking in front of a Flickr slideshow with photos of his events. It was such a hit Danielle Morrill of Twilio followed suit later on.
In addition to speakers imparting their knowledge, product demos were sprinkled in. PollEverywhere demoed realtime poll results as audience members texted votes to the question: who had the best demo today? It was a close call. CardMunch showed how their app transcribes a stack of business cards into contacts in your phone. Plancast made it easy to find out who’s going to what events, and MogoTix showed how to turn your iPhone into a ticket. Weebly’s take-away was that anyone can create a website easily and quickly with their solution—which was nice, as it was one of the few presentations that actually fit within the time allotted.
The only real glitch with the event was the schedule. It kicked off late (which we all know happens more frequently than we’d like!) What really backed it up, however, was speakers running over their allotted time. Most demos and speakers were given 5 to 15 minutes each, but few stuck to it. Since the topics were interesting, no one seemed to actually mind, but if timing was made a bit more clear and enforced from the beginning it could have saved the event from running over an hour behind. And there would have been time for both the networking and “unconference” portion of the day.
Our #1 tip for event planners to avoid this common mistake is plan some buffer time within the schedule. And don’t be afraid to speak up in the beginning and make it clear you plan to regulate speakers that start to go over.
SF-ites! Want the low-down on what’s worthwhile and coming up each week? The first issue of What’s Brite in SF will be rolling out next week, so sign up below and stay tuned!