I Was Just Thinking…

Ramping up Overall Engagement at Your Conference or Event: My Observation of how Gamification Impact Social Media usage at a Conference.

Background on Engaging a Conference
In a previous post I noted that  I have tweeted conferences for the past 2 or 3 years while being inconsistent at other times.  I started live tweeting events  when I realized that I was spending as much time and effort tweeting out the most relevant points of the session I was in as I spent taking notes – plus, the notes I took were less relevant than my tweets, since I was only tweeting out the best parts!  Tweeting has allowed me to share and others to share info from sessions we may not have been able to attend.   Once I committed to live tweeting conferences, I got a lot of great, positive feedback about it from other attendees.   I have had many people come up to me and say “Hello @kentbrooks”.  It has been a great way to meet other conference attendees  so I kept on going. I’ve gotten the bulk of my Twitter connections through live tweeting. Live tweeting doesn’t just build recognition among attendees of the conference, either. People who are trying to follow along at home via the conference hash tag are often even bigger fans of quality live tweets.   At the Ellucian Live Conference April of 2013 I specifically had a request from one of the Wyoming CIO’s to live tweet the conference since he was not going to be able to make it.  I am not sure of the overall impact, but I do know it is easier to meet more people at conferences through live tweeting.  Ironic, isn’t it…technology humanizing the experience of a gathering of people.
We we attended a Moodle Moot aka Moodle Conference in Helena MT in July 2013 and had amazing participation.  I will add a few details of what we did in various posts in this series, but the bottom line:

Gamification has enhanced conference conversations at the Helena Montana Mountain Moot

Since I have a head start on this topic I have easily been the most active tweeter at most of the conferences I have attended in the past few years. However, as I look at the examples below I have wondered if some of this is not a one-way conversation.   So my question became: how do we get more people engaged in these conversations?   

I haven’t done a great job a measuring  this until the past year, partly because my intent never was to learn more about how this works, but rather I was just trying to find a way to share notes.  As I have tried to sort through all the with all sorts of new technology   looking at how a conference works I thought how can we gauge this?

Tags Explorer Visualization  provide a pictorial view of twitter activity based on a given hashtag
AACC April 2013
Attendees:  1600

Mountain Moot July 2012
Attendees:  110

TDWI  August 2013
Attendees  500-900

The answer to the original question.    You have to find a reason for people to be there, meaning Twitter, LinkedIn Etc.  Gamifying the conference event definitely created a buzz about using Twitter.  All conference give aways were tied to the Twitter Game and all the activities in the Twitter Game were designed to  create engagement.   





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