Perhaps it’s a bit presumptuous of me to call it the first annual when there is not yet any certainty that there will be a second annual, but from what I experienced, the second is yet to come.
I was pleased to be able to chair one section of the sessions, including a presentation by Diane Hessan of Communispace, and learned just how important it is to have a solid internet connection for an online event. A great back-up team from Andrew Jeavons and Ray Poynter (who needs zero sleep) meant that the session continued uninterrupted while I managed to get back online. You can’t beat a well organized conference.
My own presentation, “Mr Survey Flirts with Ms Social Media Research” was the very last session of the entire festival and I hope those who listened felt the festival ended on a great note. For those who couldn’t listen in, you can catch my storybook on my . You can also still register for the festival and listen and watch all 36 presentations for just $50. There really is no better conference deal than that. page
As for the whole virtual festival concept, I have nothing but high praise.
- Presenters and audience in pajamas, with dogs at feet, hot oatmeal in hand, sitting comfortably on their favorite lazy-boy chair, and your own bed at the end of the day
- Presenters and audience from around the world, some of whom have never been able to attend a conference
- A registration price that cannot be beat, and travel costs that, well, were the price of your local public transportation ($3 for me)
- Big name speakers, not all of whom normally attend marketing research conferences
- All the presentations and videos available to the audience
Actually, there were some drawbacks of the this conference
- No big breakfasts, sumptuous lunches, or gala dinners where folks can admire the unique tastes of the local region. PB&J sammies instead.
- No free goodies to bring back to my colleagues who were unable to attend the conference.
- No missing friends and family back home…. wait, that’s not a drawback!
So you see, there is no choice. There will be a Second Annual NewMR Virtual Festival!