Collector - November 2020 - 11

BESTPRACTICES

Nearly half of
attendees at virtual
events engage
using social media,
compared to just

16%
at in-person events.

Source: International Data Corporation

Virtual exhibits are a great way to connect
with more companies. And many event
platforms allow you to include your team
on conversations without sending everyone
out to travel.
Virtual fatigue is real, so schedule breaks
for yourself throughout the day.
"For multi-day events, and even for
one-day events running eight hours, it's
extremely important for attendees to take

COLLECTOR 11.20

offline breaks during scheduled break times
versus squeezing in a 1:1 Zoom or catching
up on email," Bleau said.
Standing up, stretching or going for a walk
around the block allows your eyes and brain
to refresh.
"The nice thing about online conferences
is that materials are usually accessible outside
of set presentation times," Smith said. "So,
attendees can take screen breaks without
worrying about losing an opportunity to learn."

AFTER YOU SIGN OFF
Following up with your contacts after the
conference is extremely important. In
addition to a simple "nice meeting you" email,
you should connect with them on Twitter or
LinkedIn to nurture your relationship.
"Share something of interest with them, and
like and comment on their posts," said Syed
Irfan Ajmal, growth consultant at Gigworker.
If the conference saved your chat history,
revisit it to remind yourself of what you
discussed with each person.
"That way, when you reach out to
a contact in the future, you're able to

personalize the interaction and establish a
sense of shared familiarity," Smith said. "It's
also a great way to stand out and show you
go the extra mile."
The nice thing about online conferences is
that most materials continue to be accessible
after the event is over. This includes sessions,
exhibitors, speaker lists and social wall
discussions. You might even be able to
review information from events you weren't
able to attend, but are interested in, to
maximize your learning.
Throughout the event, but especially
afterwards, promote your attendance
online using the event hashtags. You
can also extend your virtual engagement
even more by taking an active role in
future online events-volunteering to
speak, moderate or otherwise help
with the conference. This not only
gives you a proactive connection to
the conference, but also establishes
you as an industry expert.
Anne Rosso May is ACA International's
communications director and editor-in-chief.

11



Collector - November 2020

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Collector - November 2020 - 1
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