Does it ever feel like everyone but you gets to go to any and every conference they want? Like every day you see tweets and blogs of people that are at another conference? Well, a little of that is reality. There really are conference junkies out there. (Many of them are consultants and vendors whose "job" is to network at these events.) But part of it is because of the increase in the sheer number of conferences. It used to be there were a handful of big conferences through the year--and conference organizers worked hard to spread them out. Now days--that's impossible. For example, last week there were two huge conferences happening simultaneously: Exponential in Florida and Catalyst West in California.
But in today's world, it's not necessary to be there in person. Here are a few ways you can tune in without leaving home:
- Check the conference site for a live feed of their sessions. It looks like both All Access and Orange are streaming live. This is becoming more common all the time.
- Check the conference site after it concludes for uploaded sessions (like ChurchPlanters.com did for their recent Velocity conference).
- Do a Google Blog Search and limit it to your conference name in the post title to find attendees who are blogging live.
- Follow the Twitter hashtag for the conference using a service like Twubs. That sounds complicated, but you don't have to have a Twitter account to see what people are "tweeting." And many times you'll hear some great one-liner quotes in real time. It's as though you are there. Click here for examples from this week's conferences: All Access, Orange and Q.
Of course there are exceptions. For example, you'll want to be there in person for the AND Conference coming up in November. But then again, I'm a little biased.