Modernizing Conference Education

With all the advancements in society and research on how the brain works, why is it that most conference education still provides talking heads and passive listeners? Is that best for your attendees?

Here is the PowerPoint from a short 12-minute TED-style presentation that I gave at Experient’s 2010 e4 conference in Orlando, FL. Enjoy.

What type of conference education do you enjoy attending? Why do you think more conference organizers have not changed their education strategies?

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  2. Laura Lear says:

    Love this presentation! Great visuals, which is the first step to fun and engagement when combined with an effective speaker. I went to the BMA Engage conference recently and had the pleasure of hearing Chris Brogan, Jeff Hayzlett and David Meerman Scott and they were mesmerizing. They used no real “bullet points” but a few high impact slides laced with videos and animations. Their slides complemented the message they were delivering so my focus remained more on them. Chris Brogan’s slides were hand drawn “doodles” that very effectively complemented his speech.

    A few more things that made a difference there… The room was smaller than some I’ve been and featured a huge screen. The size of the screen makes a difference, as our clients have found when hosting events in our movie theater network. You can’t ignore a big screen, especially a 40′ one, and big sound.

    The BMA conference also did an exceptional job of using hashtags during the conference and featuring the incoming tweets on a huge screen at all times. People who were participating in the conference remotely via computers were included so there was a great dialogue going on throughout the session.

    Finally, there were several breaks throughout the conference during which people visited “booths” (really low key ones) located around the perimeter to engage and network with sponsor participants. It was really low key and more focused on dialogue than a “show up and throw up” exhibition/trade show floor.

    I thought this conference was a great model for how to wow and engage an audience and hope to see more like this one.

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