Happy 100th BrightTALK Summit!
This month BrightTALK hosted its 100th summit since the summit program launched in September 2008. The 100th summit was Social Media Marketing, which was a three-day event featuring a line up of social media marketing experts carefully selected by the marketing team at BrightTALK.
When we first launched the summit program in 2008, our goal and vision was to create one-day events that busy business professionals could attend from the convenience of their desks and come away from the experience with current and relevant knowledge that would simply help them ‘do their jobs better.’
Coordinating a summit is not as easy as you would think. It is a carefully put together process that is planned six months in advance. To ensure that we put together a current and relevant program, the marketing managers and coordinators need to stay at the forefront of the market place. This means connecting and speaking with all of the stakeholders in a given sector to get a strong understanding of what is relevant in that industry.
After much research, the team will then confidently launch a summit that features content which will hit the sweet spot of the users and professionals that it has been created for. If you get a chance to spend a day in the BrightTALK office, you’ll see a flurry of activity where the marketing team is busy speaking to what we call the ‘community leaders’ and then carefully producing a summit brief that outlines the tracks that we will then be recruiting industry experts to present on.
When we first launched the summit program, this was a much tougher process as we had to build a pool of speakers and industry experts and find a means of reaching many of these high profile speakers from their respective sector. Today, we have our regular speaker community who continue to come back time and time again because they enjoy working with us coupled with the fact that when they speak at a summit; it is often the case that one of their peers (often from another region) will be listening to their webcast and will bring this up in conversation at their next meeting. Our speakers undoubtedly find this personally and professionally rewarding.
Today the job of recruiting speakers is not such a tough process because the communities in which we serve know about the BrightTALK Summits. Our speakers have started to recommend their peers and help suggest topics that they know are current and interesting within the industry. Today our challenge is more about collecting all the great ideas and selecting the summits to produce.
Of course our work does not stop with simply producing a program and sourcing the speakers. Our event coordinators will then liaise with the speakers to coordinate the live time slots that work for them on the day, and that’s not taking into account the many panel sessions and debates that we have started to coordinate. After that, the final job of the day is to then promote the summit which I’ll talk about in a future post. In the meantime, a regular and well-attended summit program is a reassuring sign that we will be reaching our 200th summit pretty soon.