Online conference materials are at their best when they complement—not duplicate—print. Online content is more prevalent and important than ever before, and that has impacted how associations provide content to their attendees. They expect online access to content, and associations understand that in order to meet the needs of their members, they must deliver online conference materials as well as printed ones.
As you think about how to approach a content website for your next annual meeting, take a cue from Angie Guy, Meeting and Events Manager with International Meeting Managers. She helps her clients in the medical field do more with their online conference materials.
Ms. Guy’s client works with Omnipress to take its conference materials online. She incorporates other tools into the website, like Survey Monkey, to make it easier for attendees to take post-session surveys so they can more easily collect and interpret the results. To make it simple to download multiple presentations without searching for a specific session, Ms. Guy had Omnipress connect a Download by Day button to a Dropbox account. When users click the button, all of the documents on the website from that day’s presentations—slide decks, handouts, and more—were automatically included in the download.
“It really helps to have the site available year-round,” she said. “Members like having more time to access the materials. For example, lots of attendees like to download or at least view the handouts before the conference.” The website also includes general information about the conference, like maps and registration information. “That cuts down on the number of calls and emails we get in the office,” Ms. Guy reported.
Taking notes online is another important benefit for attendees. “Even if I don’t have the handouts available to add to a session online, I add a placeholder so attendees can take notes,” Ms. Guy said. One year, one of her clients didn’t offer note-taking capabilities for their online materials, and there was considerable pushback from attendees. The association added note-taking back in the next year.
Online conference materials allow for last-minute additions. “If a change comes in so late that it can’t be included in the printed materials, it will definitely be included online.”
For more ideas on how online content can help your association do more, as it did for these associations, read our new white paper! Many thanks to International Meeting Managers’ Angie Guy for sharing her experience.