I’m going to be a panelist at the Grow Smart Biz conference next Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at the Renaissance Hotel in Washington, DC. In my opinion, this conference will be a must-attend event for small business owners and entrepreneurs (more on that later). This blog post is about how the conference planners are using the crowd to attract a bigger crowd. Here’s how:
The planners of Grow Smart Biz have assembled a powerhouse group of speakers and panelists, which is not unusual for a conference. What is new is this: the planners have actively engaged the speakers in promoting the conference through their blogs, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, etc. In essence, the conference hosts are tapping into the vast networks of the speakers to promote the event. So, when Jill Foster, editor of the Women Grow Business blog and social media expert, tweets or blogs, the event is marketed to her over 3,000 followers. So, if you’ve got big names keynoting at your next convention, why not ask them to update their status and give your event a boost?
I’m also seeing event planners and registration sites encourage attendees to update their status when they purchase tickets. I purchased a ticket to an event recently. On the thank you page, there was a link to “Tweet This” and “Update Your Facebook” status. Since so many of us update our statuses so frequently and share what we’re reading, the movies we’re seeing, the concert we’re attending, etc., it only makes sense that we would want to share with our friends and network that we are attending an upcoming meeting or event. By doing so, we’re helping to promote the event to our networks and followers.
So, for all you meeting and event planners out there, how are you using your attendees and speakers to encourage more attendance and participation in your events? How can you leverage the vast networks of your direct audience to reach new and untapped audiences?
P.S. I hope to see you at the Grow Smart Biz conference next week. The conference will not just be about social media. The speakers and panels will also focus on: how to grow your business in the current economy, tactics for securing financing for your small business, ways to kick start your marketing activities. And if you use the promotion code OFFER100, you’ll get $150 off $299 registration fee!