February 5, 2019
You’ve been assigned to run social media for your first conference, congratulations! There is nothing more exciting than having the opportunity to get out of the office and on the ground floor of an event for your client. Your first conference is an event that you will never forget. Until you are on the conference floor in the moment, you won’t know how your experience is going to pan out. To relieve worries and reduce stress, here are 5 pro-tips for surviving your first conference on the social media team.
You need to accept this up front. This is a conference, there will be thousands of attendees and a thousand moving parts. There is no way that you will capture every moment, and that is ok! Quite literally, there is not enough time for you to become upset if something does not go as planned. Move on and let that sh!t go! You have places to be. I promise, missing one tweet or image opportunity will NOT ruin your entire conference social plan. Fix what you can and keep truckin’ along. You plan for the best and prepare for the worst, which leads directly into my next tip…
Try to say that five times fast! The more you can prepare ahead of time, the better you will be. I highly encourage you to create a master schedule Google Sheet. This living document should hold every single detail of your daily schedule. Be specific and as nitty-gritty as possible. You want to include big picture items with your specific tasks. Transfer over generic conference events and details from the official schedule (Registration, Breakfast, Lunch, etc.) Next, fill in your daily responsibilities and events you need to attend. Below is an example of what I personally used while working on the Social Media team at VMworld, a large global conference for virtualization and cloud computing.
What to include:
Extra tips on planning ahead:
Conferences are long-days for everyone involved. When you are working at a conference, there is a much larger undertaking than if you were attending. You are likely going to be “on” from the moment you wake-up until the end of all conference events that evening. The harsh truth is there may be days where you are too busy to make it to the meals. The last thing you want to happen is to be working a 15-hour day, unable to grab a quick bite to eat, while you need to work at 100%! Plan ahead for these moments.
Don’t forget to bring:
Your utmost responsibility is to get the job done. Don’t forget to also have fun and enjoy yourself! Be friendly and introduce yourself to the people around you. Take the time to interact with your clients if they are also attending. At the end of the day, you are already going to be utterly exhausted – if the opportunity presents itself to attend a party or meet up in a more relaxed environment after your day’s work is done, do it! Losing an extra hour or two of sleep isn’t going to make a dramatic difference in how tired you feel the next day. This is an opportunity to network and make connections, possibly even form a closer personal relationship with your client. Bond with your co-workers who are on this journey with you, you will become so much closer going through this experience together. Have fun and enjoy the moment! You can sleep when the conference is over 🙂Find more helpful tips here!