Social Media 101

Jenise Fryatt (@JeniseFryatt) of Engage365 and Jay Daughtry of @ChatterBachs co-facilitated a session that introduced participants to some of the basics of social media, particularly the process of creating a presence on Twitter and getting the most out of it.

Fryatt said participating in Twitter only generates value when people have a reason for being there, and marketing or business development is one of the best. She said much of her own marketing is centered on a weekly blog that she promotes via Twitter and Facebook. The strategy began with a deliberate effort to establish a Twitter network by following people, engaging with them, and retweeting their posts. Continue reading

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Opening roundtable – summary, evaluations, and comments

Here’s our first in a series of summaries of the sessions held at EventCamp™ East Coast. We begin at the beginning, with a summary of the opening roundtable. We have also added participants’ evaluations of and comments on this session.

Photo by Karen Brown

Opening Roundtable
EventCamp East Coast (EC²) co-organizer Traci Browne recalled the history of the EventCamp series, beginning with informal conversations and twice-weekly chats over the #eventprofs hashtag on Twitter. After getting to know each other online, participants agreed to meet in person in New York City last February, then at three concurrent locations for EventCamp Twin Cities in September, providing powerful proof that online meetings needn’t take away from face-to-face—in some communities, virtual events actually create more live engagement. Continue reading

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Undiscussed topics at EventCamp East Coast

by Adrian Segar

In my experience, when you get a group of professionals together and give them the opportunity to determine what they’d like to talk about, you’ll end up with enough viable topics for several days of sessions. EventCamp East Coast (EC²), held earlier this month, was no exception. The final peer session schedule, shown above, was optimized for the single day that was available, and I was pleased to see significant attendance at every session.

During the event I was asked whether I could share the session topics that didn’t make it into the final conference program. The thought was that the list of undiscussed topics could be a useful resource for ideas for future conference sessions, #eventprofs chats etc. So, here are the session titles (quoted directly from the peer session sign-up sheets) that would have been held if we had had more time available at EC²: Continue reading

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A Call To The #Eventprofs Community

by Lindsey Rosenthal, Adrian Segar and Traci Browne

After almost a week full of hurt feelings, anger, resentment, and personal offense, we decided we would like to reframe the discussion at hand. It is time to talk not about beliefs regarding live-streaming, virtual access or confidentiality, but time to discuss our future – the future of #eventprofs – and whether this particular debate was important enough to let our community down. It is not. Therefore, we are asking our community, our friends, our colleagues, and even our acquaintances, to push the pause button on this topic and rally our spirit toward a common goal – healing.

Members of #eventprofs are all fervent, forward-thinking leaders of our industry, advocates of pushing the boundaries and creating better experiences. This is bound to cause contention. There is room in this community for different views and passionate beliefs, but the time spent criticizing each other to no productive end seems like a disservice to all that we have to offer each other and the rest of the world looking in. Continue reading

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Why is Mitchell Beer Attending EventCamp East Coast? (Or…How Could He Not Attend??)

by Mitchell Beer

Why EC2?

The throwaway line is that EventCamp is the meetings industry conference where the cool kids come out to play. But that doesn’t nearly do justice to the wisdom, experience, and dynamic ideas that make EventCamp such a fascinating place to be.

What I like best about the EventCamp series is that it just. Never. Quits. The most successful meetings connect the dots between the issues and expectations that participants bring onsite, the days they actually spend together, and the future that begins the moment they get home. Few meetings follow that model, but EventCamp is helping to change that: by bringing together some of the smartest ideas in meeting design, and by actively building bridges from before to during to after.

Who would have thought that a loosely-knit group of volunteers could carry off three regional events in nine months, with a national coming up in February? That EC Twin Cities, in particular, would stand as such a bright, shining example for anyone who wants to organize a hybrid meeting that works? Or that the EventCamp series as a whole would emerge so quickly as a model of flexibility, from the wide-open access at Twin Cities to the accent on audience privacy at East Coast?

We were proud to sponsor ECTC by producing live “news tweets” while sessions were under way (yes, that was us working from the ECTC Twitter account), then delivering the longer news capsules and summary reports that organizers circulated afterwards. In Philadelphia, we’ll have a team of four writers capturing the unconference content as participants create it. It’s the kind of sponsorship we look forward to, because we know we’ll bring home a bunch of new ideas and strategies to help our clients get more out of their meetings.

The organizers who make EventCamp work bring the mix of dedication, skill, and creativity that I expected to find when I became a meeting professional. This is not the only flash of brilliance I’ve seen in 25 years in the industry, but it’s one of the very best. So at the risk of sounding like someone who obsesses too much about words (SURELY not)…I think we’ve got it wrong. We shouldn’t be asking why any of us would come to EventCamp East Coast. The real question is: Why would anyone willingly miss it?

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Dress Code? We Say Schmess Code

by Lindsey Rosenthal

So you will finally be attending EventCamp East Coast tomorrow and what are you thinking today? What, oh what will I wear?! Don’t worry, we’ve got your answer here:

ANYTHING YOU WANT.

Our purpose at EventCamp is to make you feel as comfortable as you possibly can in expressing your opinions, your thoughts, your creativity and your expertise. In order to accomplish that feeling, we want you to be at your most comfortable relating to your peers in your clothing as well. If that means you will be wearing jeans and t-shirt, so be it. If you would prefer to drab up a bit to a suit, we are happy to see it. The point is for you to be able to best interact based on how you see it.

If you are still looking for a general guideline, we expect most people to be dressed somewhere between casual and business casual. We only ask that you make sure that you are respecting others here – hopefully we will not be seeing too many curse words across your chest. We are a community, and as such, we can work together while expressing individuality. That is our goal for this weekend.

Other pertinent notes: the weather forecast is out! Expect it to be rather seasonal weather for autumn here in Philadelphia. Highs in the mid-50s and low-60s, lows in the evenings and mornings in the mid-30s, and partly sunny. Your mom may tell you to pack a sweater, but we don’t mind seeing you in a tank top if that’s what you prefer!

Some other tips of items for you to bring with you:

  • Your cell phone charger and your laptop charger. After having attended several of these events this year, I am rather certain you will need to recharge after a full day.
  • More business cards than you think you will need.
  • A pen with you to make notes throughout the day.
  • An open mind!

Please note that lunch will not be served on Friday, but we will have a refreshment break with snacks and drinks at 2:00 PM.

So excited to see everyone tomorrow! Please don’t hesitate to contact us at EventCampEC@gmail.com with any questions or concerns.

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Why is Cameron Toth coming to EventCamp East Coast?

by Cameron Toth

I am coming to Event Camp East Coast because there are not many places you can go as an event planner that show you new and innovative ways to run meetings. I am a member of Meeting Professionals International and you would think our events would be event labs but they are not. Event Camp is a laboratory for new ideas and the fact that it has evolved from a national and international event community that started online means that the diversity of thought is truly unique.

I am particularly excited about Event Camp East Coast because of the ‘Unconference’ methods being used and the small nature of the meeting. I will be seeing a lot of Twitter #eventprofs friends and I am really excited about that. I am looking forward to the networking and learning opportunities.

Cameron Toth is an educator with years of experience in non-profit meetings, events, Promotional Medical Education, food service management, and education based programming. He consults with companies, teams and individuals on how to best utilize social media outlets and tools to market products and services. The majority of Cameron’s time is spent preparing high school students for college and careers at Harlem’s A. Philip Randolph Campus High School.

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Why is Eric Lukazewski coming from Chicago to EC²?

by Eric Lukazewski of Echelon Design

This fall, Echelon Design is partnering with EventCamp and traveling to Philadelphia to be a part of EventCamp East Coast. It’s an exciting opportunity that I’m eagerly anticipating as a growing member of the event community.

So why EventCamp and why now?

EventCamp is Groundbreaking
I have little doubt to the impact and magnitude that conferences like EventCamp have on the industry. In a little over a year, a community of event planners have been cultivated through online networks, planted with the minds, ideas and progression needed to adapt to changes in events and the environments around them.

This being the third such conference in less than a year shows that there is plenty of validation growing around these new ideas and their role as a foundation for new business and opportunities.

I have watched it happen.

Events are Sensitive
The world around us evolves daily and events consistently model the adaptation required for these changes. Between technology, finances, and business ethics, event planners need to understand their expanding role and also anticipate and prepare for the future.

Planners also bear a portion of responsibility to recognize the changing landscape of business and events and educate our clientele. Our clients rely on us for developing professional environments for business. Our understanding of shifts in communication tools, valued learning habits, and other strategies fall as undertones in the environments that we create.

Change begets Change
Like any industry, events have weaknesses along with their strengths. In order to change and fix these shortcomings, we must convene and recognize them, analyze them, and attack them. With change needed, we must also organize this shift within our own processes—but doing so with unification and a common goal is needed to send the right messages to the masses.

I’m truly proud to have Echelon Design be a part of an event that embraces and continues to push progressive ideas, shares them unconditionally, and executes them.

THAT is how you build an army and conquer the world.

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Win a $500 Scholarship to EventCamp National from Grosh Backdrops!

Would you like to attend EventCamp in Chicago on February 11-13, 2011, but you don’t have the money to cover the registration and the hotel, in addition to your travel? Here is your solution!

Grosh Backdrops is offering a $500 scholarship to EventCamp 2011 to the EventCamp East Coast attendee who best answers the question below in 250 words or less:

“How will the events industry change in the next 10 years and what will you do to help it get there?”

So how do you enter?
Answer the question above as a response to the conversation in our event community by Thursday, November 11 at 12:00 Noon ET. Only EventCamp East Coast attendees may enter. Your answer will be ranked by two groups: a judging panel made up of three industry leaders and as crowdsourced by your peers through a poll made available on this website. Each judge will receive one vote, and the community as a whole will receive one vote. The attendee with the highest overall rank and the prize will be announced on Saturday, November 13 at the event!

And now, introducing your judging panel!

Lindsay FultzGrosh Backdrops: Lindsay is the manager of sales and new media at Grosh Backdrops and Drapery, the generous sponsor of this scholarship. She is a social media genius, a marketing expert, and a leader in sales methods across the events industry. While at Grosh, she has helped expand and broaden the sales and marketing department by creating Grosh’s Facebook and Twitter pages. She helps motivate her team by emphasizing simplified ways to streamline the sales process.

Michael McCurryExperient: Mike is a 30-year veteran of the meetings and events industry. McCurry is currently a strategic account manager with Experient and is responsible for oversight of the relationship between Experient and numerous corporate and association clients. He has been an active member of the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) since 1993 and most recently 2009 President of the Greater Midwest Chapter. Mike is also one of the “founding five” members of the EventCamp National Conference.

Ray HansenAppEvision: Ray has been an innovative leader and industry expert on interactive meeting technology and audience response systems for nearly a decade. He has both a technical and practical understanding of how to maximize the interactive environment of an audience. In July of 2010, Ray started AppEvision and has been developing social, mobile applications to engage, educate and communicate to audiences of any size. Ray is also the co-founder of Event Camp Twin Cities.

Wish you could enter this contest? Register for EventCamp East Coast, we still have a few spots available!

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How to prepare for EventCamp East Coast

EventCamp East Coast begins shortly, and we want to welcome you and let you know how you can prepare for the conference.

If you’ve worked on something that you think may be of interest to other attendees, or have experience or expertise in a given area or topic, please bring any useful supporting or presentation materials or links to the conference. As you know, all sessions are informal, so you don’t need to bring or prepare anything polished for distribution.

The conference hashtag is #ecec10. Feel free to tweet up a storm before, during, and after the event!

If you haven’t already, please join our online community site. The site is a great place to find useful information about other attendees and share your own, as well as reading recent attendee discussions and tweets.

If you have any questions about the format of the event, please contact Adrian Segar <adrian@segar.com> or @ASegar. Send questions related to:

  • the conference site to Traci Browne <traci@red-cedar.com> or @tracibrowne
  • sponsor relations to Lindsey Rosenthal <lrosenthal@eventsforgood.org> or @eventsforgood

We’re looking forward to seeing you at EventCamp East Coast!

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