In the past week I’ve been to two seminars, billed as helping us to make our businesses digital. The first was organized by the @TheFSForum and as a delegate I was keen to hear the marketing director @HiscoxSmallBiz https://twitter.com/HiscoxUK speak . Sorry to say she was ill on the day, so I am none the wiser about how Hiscox (a brand that I admire) is using digital. I would dearly love to know. The second event was hosted by corporate communications folk @InstinctifCorp http://instinctif.com and I was on the other side of the experience, as one of the speakers.
What struck me was how different those experiences were. The FS Forum lacked any visible sign of people engaging in digital conversation. Twitter handles went un-promoted and I scrabbled around for my joining details, desperate to find a hash tag to follow. Instead the chair fielded questions from the audience and it felt flat and un-engaging.
Being part of the Instinctif event made me think about how easy it is to get it right though, but only if you follow their lead:
- Give your event a hashtag – and promote it ahead, during and after the event. It sounds obvious but people aren’t doing it enough, especially in the b2b world. Make the information easy to find and splash it over all materials, slides, Twitter feeds
- TweetBeam – no doubt there are lots of apps like @TweetBeam http://www.tweetbeam.com that bring together comments and consolidate them onto a wall that becomes a feature of your event. The Instinctif team got things started by posting ideas, showing us the way and encouraging everyone to join in. And join in they did, making for a lively, fast moving and more inclusive experience all round. It felt good for delegates and speakers alike
- Vary your content – another tip that I picked up was how the team filmed brief video clips as people trooped out the door, another means of promoting your ideas and keeping the topic alive. They introduced me to neat little app called audioBoo https://twitter.com/audioboo which records 30 second sound-bites that you can embed into a post and add a mug shot too (scary). Simple, yet a very effective way of bringing content alive whilst adding the human touch http://bit.ly/1ocorrQ
- Be passionate – and finally what I noticed about everyone there (organisers, delegates, speakers) was their determination and interest in sharing their experiences and learning from others. It’s powerful stuff if you can break out of traditional ways of working
What digital does is give us better tools that enable us to be more collaborative, get into genuine dialogue, where giving ideas away is good and learning from each other is encouraged. I, for one, am a fan. Are you?