The idea of attending a conference as a delegate has been re-imagined in the world of virtual events. This digital reinvention of a conference and exhibition can seem a little alienating at first, you might ask yourself “why would I bother?” Well let’s take a step back and first ask why would you attend any conference? The top five reasons to attend an industry conference are well documented as:
- Education and learning
- Finding new products, services and suppliers
- Building your professional profile
- Having fun
Traditionally we’ve all been willing to travel across the country, pay for hotels and be out of the office for days to attend a conference, and if it’s any good all of these boxes will be ticked for our effort. We come back re-invigorated from spending a few days with ‘our tribe’ and can implement these new learnings in our roles with a new focus and energy. If we dig a little further it’s the ‘accidental’ meetings at the conference that can often bring the ‘gold’ – bumping into an old colleague at the coffee cart or meeting a new contact at the bar.
Here’s the thing, attending a virtual conference CAN tick all those boxes too! Like anything new, it is a case of ‘the more you put in, the more you get out of it’. Without the right attitude to attending, a virtual event could be a very passive experience as a delegate. However if the event is designed and delivered with the attendee in mind (like VCTCE2020) then you are in for a refreshing surprise.
Let’s step through how you can achieve those top 5 reasons for attending a conference on our virtual platform:
1.Education and learning
The program is packed with over 40 speakers across the 3 x half-day live stream including international and national keynote speakers, panel discussions with industry experts and breakout sessions featuring case studies and practical lessons. Speakers can interact with the virtual audience through live polling, Q&A and chat options.
Face-to-face connections via digital networking sessions everyday will ensure connections between virtual delegates. The technology behind this will bring together groups for a quick meet & greet, allowing for contact exchange to take place and deeper conversations to happen one-on-one. This is where you will find that ‘conference gold’. To get this benefit make sure you join these sessions everyday.
3. Finding new products, services and suppliers
The virtual exhibition will feature a range of industry suppliers, ready to chat with you face-to-face about your business and give you information on their solutions. At VCTCE the exhibition will be open from 8am – 1pm each day of the event, so you have plenty of time to visit all exhibitors.
4. Building your professional profile
The online platform allows you to browse a list of your fellow attendees (the digital version of ‘scanning the room’) and reach out to them via the meeting hub. Set up a meeting time with someone you’ve been trying to reach for a while. Accept meeting requests and proactively use the time on the platform to ensure you are visible to the other attendees. Being ‘seen’ at a virtual conference can raise your profile and be that conversation starter you’ve been looking for to move a business deal forward, or get that new job offer!
5. Having fun
Don’t miss the opportunity to participate in the online competitions, polls and quizzes. Online social functions rely on you to relax and be open to having new conversations with like minded people. To keep things interesting the team at VCTCE have some surprises up their sleeves for those joining the event live! The most important thing is to get involved, ask questions, make comments and sample as many of the different elements as you can.
Even with all reasons for attending covered off, you might still need some convincing (seriously?). So here’s the kicker! You can achieve all of this for a fraction of the cost, reducing your carbon footprint and your time away from the office. Attending a virtual conference gives you control over how you spend your time and flexibility to balance other commitments. You don’t need to stress if you miss a session, as a registered attendee you can access the recordings after the event.
So we encourage you to jump right into this new world of virtual events, bring your A game and make the most of what’s on offer.