Rem’s back from Podcast Movement in Dallas!
As you’ll see from the title, this isn’t a standard episode of the The Sci-Fi Movie Podcast. This is a quick audio guide talking about the valuable tricks and tips I’ve gathered by traveling to the national Podcast Movement Conference in Dallas Texas.
This episode is really for my fellow podcasters to help them get the most from a conference, which will help them to make better content. But if you travel regularly, you might find some value here too.
Feel free to skip this episode if you’re looking for a Sci-Fi Movie review. This Friday, we’ll release one of our special Patreon After Show Podcasts.
Much of this will be applicable to other conferences, but I’ll use the examples I picked up at Podcast Movement 2014 and New Media Expo 2014.
Before The Trip
- Book early! Get your flights, hotel and PM stuff done
- Stay in the same hotel as the event, it’s worth the extra money
- Flight tracker Apps (Plane Finder and Flight Aware) Google cards
- Download the App that the conference sets up
- Phone Charger Anker Astro E5 15000Ma
- Digital Audio Recorder? Better to have it and not need it
- Room and ride share?
- Subscribe to the Wednesday Webinars (Podcast Movement)
- Write down your flight info, Itinerary, hotel address and other stuff on a notebook in case you lose network or cellular connectivity or your device packs it in.
- Bring your own pillows
- Perfect your elevator pitch
- Record an extra podcast episode and have it ready to release. If you typically release on the day you’ll be at Podcast Movement, set it to auto publish. Remember, just because you’re away at a conference to make your podcast better, your listener is still expecting your great content. In Podcasting, consistency is very important.
- Check to see when friends are arriving/leaving and try to find ways to ride share
- Try an Uber!
- Buy the virtual pass. You won’t be able to see all the sessions you want to, so take the stress off trying to make the right decision.
- Chap stick,
- Subscribe to the Social media feeds of the event, you might get news about added speakers, changes in the program and discounts
- Plastic silverware – bring some
- Get a good should bag for your water bottle, snacks, notebook pens, digital recorder, mints, mouthwash, deodorant, pepper spray (Joking!)
- Does the hotel have quick checkout?
- Direct flights are preferred
- If using connectors (especially from other countries) try to get a bit longer layover time. Going through security checks can be very time consuming and you might miss a connector.
- Try to bring carry on luggage if possible. If you like me, and bringing pillows, you’ll have to check your luggage, but it’s worth it.
- Check ahead to see which airline charges for checked luggage. A little research could save you upward of a hundred bucks round trip.
- For out of the U.S., exchanged your currency for American before you leave. This will give you time to find the best exchange rates.
- For out of the U.S., explore options for data roaming plans for your phone. There are several options,
During The Conference
- Drop off some business cards at the Libsyn booth
- Carry a small water bottle, most hotels will give you one free (Flask) and refill it at the end or start of a session. They’ll have water at all the sessions.
- Eat! You’re going to be busy and rushing around, but remember to keep yourself fed and energized. Throw some protein bars or nuts in your bag.
- Get some quiet time. I’m an introvert typically, and these events, though fun can be really draining, and quiet time helps me get centered and rested. That can really help your immune system and can mean the difference between getting sick or not
- Carry Purell hand sanitizer (but don’t use it just after shaking someone’s hand!)
- Tweet and Facebook the sessions you’re going to (Dave Jackson Picture) and help to promote the speakers your seeing. They’ll appreciate it.
- If you’re having a great conversation in the Hallway, you can skip a session.
- Get enough sleep! Sure, we want to get as much from PM as possible, but we’re still human and we need our rest. Getting your rest means you’ll be happier, more alert, and you’ll make a better impression with your fellow podcasters.
- Use the event Hashtag for the event in your Tweets and Facebook posts. Others at the conference will see them and they’ll find your extracirricular activities and you’ll find theirs. (#PM14)
- Make notes of areas where the organizers can improve the conference for next year
- Talk to local people and get the suggestions (going to try Babe’s Chicken next time)
- Do you recon of the area, look for coffee shops and restaurants that you can invite others to later on.
- When you see people with conference name tags, introduce yourself, invite the to join you. These are your people!
- Break the ice with weird Canadian currency!
- Try to connect with people you want to meet ahead of time and plan an evening or breakfast event. I personally love breakfast gatherings before the panels start (Try Event brite or even a good old fashioned email) This is how I met Jason Griffin and Darrell Darnell, they both hosted meetups and I met about 15-20 new friends through just those events alone.)
- Plan some events, but keep ready for the unexpected. (House of Blues, Dealey Plaza)
- Ask questions at sessions! Great way to promote your podcast!
- Keep open to people who might be a guest on your show (Evo Terra)
- Mints and mouthwash
- Strike up conversation (3 seconds- Pat Flynn talked to Jordan Harbinger – http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/charisma-course-winning-in-person-encounters/)
- Pace yourself! There’s a lot to do, a lot to see, plenty of people to meet, but remember to look after yourself (PM15 was better for me because I remembered to drink water, eat protein and a good meal, get enough sleep, take my Vitamin D) Keep your healthy habits when you travel.
- Print business cards (Share them when asked offer when appropriate)
- Receive them with respect, do just ignore it and stuff it in you pocket (Japanese)
- After the events of the day are done, and you’re in your hotel room, go through the cards you’ve received and make notes on them so you’ll remember them. Where did you meet them? What did they look like? What elements of the conversation do you want to remember or follow up on? Ideally, you want to say, ‘Oh, that’s the card for Nick Freeman, I met him in the elevator and introduced him to some other Podcasters and now he’s thinking about doing a podcast.
- You won’t form connections with everyone, and even if you know you won’t be connecting with that person in the future, be nice, accept their card, be gracious. We can have pleasant and genuine interactions with people we know we’ll never see again. That’s just being nice.
- Keep eye contact and pay attention to the person you’re talking to, don’t give them half your attention and scan the room for people you really want to talk to.
After The Conference
- When you’re traveling, wear your Podcast T-Shirt! Whether it’s the one you get from Libsyn or Podcast Movement or Podcaster’s Paradise, you might recognize a fellow attendee you haven’t met before. That’s how I met Darcy at the Modern Business Guru Podcast (modernbusiness.guru) and now I’m listening to his show!
- When you’re at the airport, on the bus or when you get home, make notes about the conference and make a list of suggestions to help improve next years event. Go through your business cards, add people to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ if they’re people you want to keep in touch with.
- Do a blog post or short Podcast about the events you attended, the people you met, give them a plug on your podcast, give out their website or Podcast. Go back and listen to the Plug fest I did on The Sci-Fi Movie Podcast after NMX at http://sci-fimoviepodcast.com/sci-fi-movie-podcast-contact/ and go to the 56:45 mark. Remember to do this after you’ve added your new friends, so they’ll be alerted to your post conference post or podcast, and they’ll likely enjoy that you mentioned them!
- Connect with the people you met and keep the connection going. You won’t become friends with everyone, but take the time and make the effort to keep in touch with people you click with. Now, you’re starting the process of building friendships and relationships.
Sci Fi Movie Podcast 50 tips Rem learned at Podcast Movement 2014