Not Able To Attend A Conference

Every year there are countless conferences I want to attend and every year I have to pass up on almost all of them. It is disappointing but I find ways to follow along. If you find yourself in a similar situation to me, what might you do to still gain insight about the conference?

 

LinkedIn – Check LinkedIn events and see who is attending and begin to network with them. Some individuals you may know and others maybe not. But connecting in advance could lead to sharing of information and feedback on the conference and topics and maybe even the sharing of notes about valuable take aways.

Twitter – Find out the particular hashtag of the conference and follow along with what is being shared and follow along. See what is being shared and even participate in the conversation from your home or office. Good tools to follow a particular hashtag include:

Ustream – Some conferences, like the 140conf will use Ustream to play live video of the sessions so that everyone may see what is happening. You are able to listen to the sessions, just miss out on the in-person networking.

Facebook – Some conferences will create a Facebook Page for people to join and get upcoming information about a conference or seminar. What is also valuable about these Pages is that the conference hosts may also upload pieces of the conference after the fact in video form or transcripts or with reviews.

YouTube – Many conferences or conference attendees will take video and upload the content to YouTube to share with the masses. This is an excellent way to get information but also hear others opinions on topics that were discussed.

Blogs – Use Google and do a search for blogs from the conference name and see what others wrote about their experience. These posts may appear after the conference but they will be helpful in accumulating additional knowledge about events.

 
While all of these are good tools to use, it is helpful to follow a variety of channels to maximize the impact and knowledge of what is being discussed. Conversations even continue online after events or into the evenings. Knowing that we are all busy and following along all day is not realistic; pick and choose what makes sense for you. And chances are, you will network and meet new people along the way even though you are not there in person.

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Don’t Have A Conference Budget

I’ll admit it, I’m jealous of everyone who gets to go to so many of these cool conferences.  The Spring and Fall seasons are always packed with great events and unfortunately I am one of those who must miss the vast majority of these fantastic events.

Today I wanted to share with you a few, simple thoughts on how to make the most of not-being-there (sorry for the video lighting).

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Hey, how you doing?  I’m coming to you today, just, it’s been a while since I’ve done a video chat.  Wanted to talk with you, today, a little bit about what to do if you can’t go to a conference.

This is definitely conference season and there’s a lot of options to get to.  Some of them are easy to get to, some are difficult to and in a case like mine I have no budget to get to any of them.

So what do you do?

I like to follow along certainly to a lot of people that I follow on Twitter to stay up to date with what is going on.  But I also like to take come conversations offline and have a lot of one-on-one communication.  Learn a little bit more about what individual people took away from it and maybe some best practices they were able to get.

So, I want you to think about what’s a way I am able to leverage conference season if I’m just not able to get to a conference.  So I hope you are able to take some time to think about that and put a plan into action where you are able to, to make the most of people, and your connections and your friends and be able to learn with them.

So, good luck with it.  I know I’m going to keep trying to do this especially next week with #SocialRecruiting Summit but hopefully I will be able to get to one soon and connect with you.

Thanks!