The future of #eventprofs chats

Thank you everyone who participated in last week’s two #eventprofs chats about …the future of #eventprofs chats. Here are links to the survey results and the Tuesday transcript. I’ve had a chance to think about the discussion, and, as the de facto #eventprofs community manager (other drivers welcome), here’s what I plan to do in the future:

Organize one chat per week

Although we have had two weekly time slots for #eventprofs chats for some time (Tue 9-10pm and Thu 12-1pm EST), in practice we have been averaging just over one chat per week (58 in 2011). There was clear agreement that we should change how often we meet to once a week. I’m still open to anyone suggesting an additional short-notice chat on a hot topic, but I won’t be scheduling more than one chat a week.

Rotate the day and time we hold the chat

It was clear from the discussions that about half those who responded preferred daytime chats and half preferred evening chats. Rather than disenfranchise half our audience permanently, we’re going to rotate our chat times weekly between our existing Tue 9-10pm and Thu 12-1pm EST times. I’m not going to to be a robot about this; we may chat two Tuesdays or Thursdays in a row. But over the year, we’ll hold about the same number of chats on each day. Follow @epchat to be informed about upcoming chats.

Chat hashtag

We will keep using the #eventprofs hashtag for the chat. Yes, it contains a lot more, sometimes irritating, announcements (aka spam) than the good old days, but that’s the price of fame. The same would eventually happen for any new hashtag we adopted. Event professionals new to Twitter often discover our chats via the #eventprofs hashtag. Besides, do you really want to have to remember to check one more hashtag?

Chat topics

We have had a neat tool for suggesting and voting on #eventprofs chat topics for some time, but it has not been used much, though I publicize it regularly on Twitter. I did not receive any ideas on ways to increase suggestions for chat topics, though several new topics were suggested (thank you Michelle & Marvin!) which I’ve added to our tool. People liked the idea of having more guest speakers on the chat and I will try to solicit more of them. And I would really appreciate suggestions/introductions from the #eventprofs community (that means YOU); contact me, it only takes a moment!

OK, so how can I help?

  1. Follow @epchat to be informed about upcoming chats.
  2. Take just a couple of minutes to suggest and vote on #eventprofs chat topics. If there’s a topic you want to talk about, suggest it! Is there’s a guest you want? Suggest them, together with the topic! If everyone added at least one topic just once a year and did comparison voting on five pairs of suggestions, we’d have a great pool of suggestions.
  3. If you are interested in moderating or being a guest on an #eventprofs chat, just let me know! Include your name, suggested topic, and the day you’d like to be on.
  4. I would love to move our #eventprofs site from the creaky (but free) pbworks wiki to something more streamlined (a free WordPress site would probably work). But I don’t have the time to do this myself right now. If you would be prepared to help with this project, I promise to have your likeness, links, and a generous profusion of thanks prominently displayed on the resulting gloriously updated version. Contact me!

In the end, as always, the health of the #eventprofs community is up to you. My continuing goal is to support making the #eventprofs chats maximally useful to the greatest number of event professionals, within the constraints of volunteer time and energy. Comments and helpful suggestions are, as always, welcome.

3 thoughts on “The future of #eventprofs chats

  1. Hey Adrian. Thanks for soliciting feedback on the future of the #eventprofs community. We certainly all appreciate that.

    Now let me temper my comment and say that I personally think rotating the days of the week that the meeting will occur is a horrible solution. This is one of those times where the “wisdom of the crowd” ends up in a sub-optimal solution for everyone.My preference remains to keep the chat at least once a week at the same slot every week. For consistency’s sake, and for newbies, I think a better solution would be to move the chats to at least being on the same day i.e. Tuesday OR Thursday and rotate times between the mid-day/late night ET chats. Special chats and meetings scheduled on the fly are fine, but the standing #eventprofs chats should not be left with such an air of uncertainty. This will help with the consistency of figuring out when to actually look for schedule announcements (i.e. Monday) and then consistently rotating the time between the two. For exampleWeek 1: Tuesday, 9 PMWeek 2: Tuesday, 12 PMWeek 3: Tuesday, 9 PMWeek 4: Tuesday, 12 PMSelfishly, I want to be able to add this to my schedule every week and know *exactly* when the meetings are happening and not have to search or look for an announcement to see when a meeting is happening. Even though it only takes a few seconds, that’s a waste of time and energy and we’re all busy people.If someone can’t make the #eventprofs chat under that system, then the chat really is not a high enough priority for them. For those people, they can get engaged with your recap and subsequent summaries.

    1. Marvin, that’s a good idea.

      But, reluctantly, I’m going to keep things the way I’ve outlined. My reason is personal; currently, I can’t reliably make both times on either day, and it’s helpful for me to be around for the chats whenever possible.

      The easiest way to see the days/times for future chats is to check the chat calendar at, which typically has chat topics and moderators in place for the next couple of weeks, and add them to your calendar. Follow @epchat:disqus on Twitter and you should be kept informed of upcoming chats.

      If you have other ideas for making it easier for busy #eventprofs to be informed about chats, please share them too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *