I’ve been organizing events and conferences for over eight years, and you would think I have it down to a science.
Not true, as I found out at last weekend’s WordCamp Orlando 2013. I discovered lots of good ideas for sponsors and attendees to add to my event planning toolkit.
Keep Your Sponsors Happy
I spent time talking with several WordCamp Orlando sponsors, and found out how small things make a big difference for them. Here are a few items they shared with me:
- Sponsors were set up in an area where they saw a lot of traffic from event attendees
- Food and drink were set up in a nearby space only for sponsors
- Throughout the day, conference volunteers checked to see if sponsors needed food or drink
- Conference volunteers offered to man the sponsor table while the sponsors ate lunch
What’s That Opportunity?
Everyone comes to conferences for different reasons: to learn, speak, connect with others in the community, hire, or find partners for projects. Depending on the size of the conference, you may never find who you’re looking for.
At WordCamp Orlando, two large flip charts were posted in the registration area for people to post opportunities as well as post what skills/experience they had to offer for projects.
I wasn’t sure what to call them, so I’m naming them opportunity boards.
What a great idea!
Each day the “Looking to Hire” and “Looking for Work” boards were filled with attendee names, description of project or skills, and their email address. I’m hoping to hear stories of successful connections from the opportunity boards.
And the Winner Is…
I’ve seen plenty of contests at events and conferences. But what I liked about the contests held at WordCamp Orlando were the personalized prizes.
The “Guess How Many LEGOs” contest had a fun WordPress LEGO piece as the prize. Another prize was locally-made honey from a WordCamp Orlando attendee.
One of the most sought-after prizes was an autographed copy of the recently published The Year Without Pants: WordPress.com and the Future of Work book by Scott Berkun.
Kudos to all the WordCamp Orlando organizers, well done! As I said, these are small things, but add delight for sponsors and attendees at events and conferences.
What small things have you implemented at your events that delight your sponsors and attendees? Share your event planning ideas in the comments.