Use social media to make the most of EMS World
Social media tools allow you to connect with your fellow attendees and maximize your conference experience
One of the criticisms leveled against social media is that the relationships formed don't result in a truly social experience. While the validity of online relationships is a debate unto itself, the fact is that social media content will often enhance a shared social experience.
Up until a few years ago, when I attended conferences I knew those I traveled with. I'd meet a few vendors, and maybe make an acquaintance or two during session breaks. Now, when I attend a conference I go there knowing people from all over the world. I already know the vendors and I can maximize my hands-on product time, and I leave having turned acquaintances into friends, all thanks to social media.
Here are a few tips for using social media to make the most of the upcoming EMS World Expo:
On Twitter you can do a search for the hashtag #EMSWorldExpo to find out what people are saying before, during, and after the conference. This is also a great way to find out what's going on at the conference and connect with other people who you may or may not already know through the social network.
One thing that differentiates EMS World Expo from other conferences I've attended is their use of the Pathfinder Event Social Network. Included in your registration for the show, Pathfinder offers you the ability to build your own schedule from the program and connect with both the session speakers and fellow attendees online. For those of you who have sworn off social networks, this is a great way to dip your toe in with a small audience. For social networking pros, this is a great way to maximize on the overall experience. There is also a mobile optimized site, so you can take the network with you during the convention.
As Social Media consumption grows, it's important that we understand how to use it. There are a few sessions at EMS World Expo that deal directly with Social Media and its uses. Two that I recommend are Greg Friese's presentation: "Social Media: A Tool For Marketing Your Agency" on Thursday afternoon and Justin Schorr's presentation: "How A Blog Saved My Life" on Friday afternoon.
If that isn't enough, be sure to check out the ProMed Network Podcast Studio in booth #2730 where there will be live shows of all the popular EMS Podcasts going on whenever the show floor is open. The shows will also be streamed live for those unable to attend the conference. Right next door will be the EMS World Physio-Control Social Media Lounge in booth #2830 where bloggers, podcasters, tweeters, and facebookers can meet friends new and old in a comfortable setting. There will also be micro-sessions on social media offered in the lounge area throughout the conference.
Those of you equipped with smart phones should be sure to have these apps on hand for any conference:
Bump — This is a quick and easy app that allows you to share contact information by simply "bumping" your smart phone with another smart phone.
Yelp — Don't want to be stuck with the conference food options? Yelp provides a great crowd-sourced directory to the best (and worst) places in the area. Great for deciding on a place to meet, especially in a city you may not be familiar with.
Car Locator — Use this app to zero in on your ride in a crowded parking lot. If you're not driving, the app is still useful to help for relocating the hotel you actually have a room in after a night out with all your new friends.