How to Increase Hype for your Break-Out Sessions
Emily A. Lane Program and Brand Coordinator, National Association of State Chief Information Officers
Though break-out sessions are an integral piece of any conference, keynote addresses and general sessions take top billing when it comes to marketing. Program abstracts, website descriptions and podium announcements help remind attendees of the break-out topics and times, but could we be doing more? This past year NASCIO piloted a few marketing efforts to increase awareness and excitement around these insightful sessions.
Enlist the Moderator
Each session moderator created a quick and engaging 30 second video (recorded with a cell phone) announcing the time, location and highlights of their session. Videos were posted to the conference website during the week leading up to the conference. Two videos were posted each day and were shared via social media to increase reach.
Create a Buzz
Before and during the conference, we asked all panelists to tweet about their session using the conference-specific hashtag. The hashtag was included in all promotional materials and was noted on the conference PowerPoint template used by all speakers. Attendees were encouraged to tweet questions to the panelists prior to the session and share speaker quotes and tips during.
While on site at the conference, each panel took a group shot holding a sign listing their session topic. The pictures were shared on social media as a last marketing push about five minutes prior to the session start time.
NASCIO has found social media and mobile apps to be low-cost and easy-to-use tools that can deliver big impact. In the years to come, it will be exciting to see how the ever-changing technology landscape enables even more ways to creatively market break-out sessions.