Want your conference to be a smashing success? If so, check out these must-know tips from Stephanie L. McJury, a conference planning expert.
Running a conference or another major event takes a lot of hard work. Use the wrong approach and your event could become a dud. Who knows what opportunities you might miss? Fortunately, Stephanie L. McJury can offer some vital insights for managing conferences and other major events.
“The first step is coming up with a plan. With events, some people try to fly by the seat of their pants,” Stephanie McJury says. “Unfortunately, that rarely works out well. You need to write things down, create checklists and schedules, and then execute.”
Of course, if you’re going to write your plan down and create checklists, you need to have a plan in the first place. If you’ve been winging it, you might not have much of an agenda at all. Stephanie L. McJury believes that you set your budget, identify the venue, and come up with a basic schedule well in advance.
Conferences center around speakers and who’s speaking at your event can go a long way in determining success or failure. Also, when looking for sponsors, make sure you invite sponsor representatives to speak and give them prime slots too. This could help you attract more sponsors.
“Setting the right schedule for speakers can be tricky, but if it’s a long event, consider spreading out the best speakers, the most well-known experts,” Stephanie L. McJury suggests. “This way, you can try to drive engagement throughout the day.”
Stephanie McJury Offers Tips For Getting the Most Out of Your Conference After It Wraps Up
All great conferences come to an end. Hopefully, you provide a memorable experience, and weeks from now people will still remember your conference in a good light. There are some steps you can take to ensure that you maximize the value of your event even after it wraps up.
“It’s smart to look at your conference as simply the peak of a marketing drive,” Stephanie McJury says. “In the lead-up, you’ll run campaigns to promote it. After the concert is done, you can use assets gathered during the event to continue to market your organization, contributors, and other stakeholders.
While running a conference, you’ll want to have a professional photographer on hand to capture plenty of great images. Then, after the event, make sure to share the images on social media. You can also use them to anchor blog posts and for many other purposes.
Speaking of blog posts, you should use content from the conference, such as sage insights provided by attendees, to craft blog posts. You can follow up with speakers and key guests asking for quotes. This way, you’re promoting them too, not just your organization and the event itself.
“Ultimately, finding win-wins for speakers, sponsors, your organization, and other stakeholders can amplify success,” Stephanie L. McJury says. “It’s one way to get all hands on deck and more people supporting your efforts.”
And when your next conference rolls around, you can use videos of your best speakers and others to entice sponsors and sell tickets. Point is, your awesome conference, in many ways, is simply the beginning.