50+ MORE Ideas for Adding Value to Healthcare Conferences DURING the Event

There are many different ways people extract value from a healthcare conference. On April 13th, participants of the Health Information Technology Social Media (#HITsm) shared their ideas, experiences and thoughts about what healthcare conference organizers, presenters, exhibitors and attendees can do BEFORE, DURING and AFTER a conference to make the event more valuable. 

In part one of this four-part blog series, I shared information about the BEFORE part of a conference sequence. In part two I shared the first half of the DURING. In this third post, I share the remainder of what #HITsm chat participants thought about value that can be obtained DURING a conference. 


In a final post, I’ll share what participants offered up regarding ways to make the most of a conference AFTER it’s over.

Note: To make it easy on the reader – and me – I’ve removed all the Twitter handles, hashtags and, in less than a handful of instances, corrected a few tweets to make them easier to read. You can read the entire, verbatim transcript here.

Using Social Media to Engage Others at Healthcare Conferences


Websites, #hashtags, Twitter chats, YouTube, Facebook and all the other social medias. Its mobile easy to share and people can carry the info with them on a mobile device where ever they go.

We’ve found that it’s best to use the technology they’re already using. Twitter is the best example, but LinkedIn, Facebook, Snapchat are other options.

Great question – We’ve actually been considering setting up a “Twitter table” at KLAS events and invite the Twittersphere to join in on the problem-solving breakout sessions we typically have at each event. Love to hear opinions: good idea? bad idea? why?

Social Media Ambassadors are pretty cool too!

Any way that you can push out information, without requiring much effort on attendees is key

Open-access input and bidirectional communication between speaker and audience. . . I like it.

What if there was a shared Google doc that people could all take notes in who are watching?

What a great idea!!! Take a risk and try it out! Maybe have a central thread in a Google doc or something for the problem solving. I wonder if that would be easier to brainstorm in vs. tweets.

I wonder, would we be able to drive people to engage in the Google doc? People at the conference, perhaps, but those who are just listening in and not in attendance?

I loved the one (Google Doc) you started at #HITMC last year. It was a brilliant idea to capture the unconference dialogue in that session!


Networking is One of the Primary Reasons People Attend Healthcare Conferences

#HIMSS18 had a Women in HIT Roundtable event Thursday. Upon arrival, there were 30+ small tables on different topics that you could join. The #Entrepreneurs table is continuing to meet offline to continue what we started there.

Host breakout sessions during the session so that people have an opportunity to “group think” and then share findings with the group.

Provide attendees with contact information so they can follow up with any additional questions.

Provide a way for both physical and virtual attendees to connect and interact with others based on topics both are interested in. Provide tools that encourage interaction in the event environment. Some event apps do this.

It is so easy to make it seem like you are in attendance even if not. Have even used this to ping people I know are there and get questions answered

Perhaps presenters/vendors/etc. could share opportunities to get involved with outside of the conference? To keep the momentum going?

Use lead retrievals to capture the information of people who visit your booth; ensure you develop a consistent way for classifying their information, and upload content to a CRM system – ensure you follow up with any potential leads!

Don’t underestimate the power of a quick email at the conference to engage people as well.

Bonus: When a presenter is not able to attend and they just cancel the session instead of have a discussion or a backup presenter. Also, I have seen a conference organizer go off on an exhibitor because they wanted to close down early due to low attendance at their event.

“Ways to interact with conference attendees” https://t.co/hYAA3QlZYa Via @StudioNorth


Event Apps Have Become Table Stakes for Healthcare Conferences



An app created specifically for the conference, with all the events and info laid out and even a communication tool within the app could be one way to get attendees more involved and informed

Have you seen the app that Disney World uses for their parks? Something similar to that would be wonderful.

Many of these apps have SERIOUS #Usability issues

Communication tool within the app could be one way to get attendees more involved and informed

@HealthCatalyst does a tremendous job of providing real-time engagement, surveying and analytics through use of the conference app. @Slidoapp is a great app to facilitate this.

Recently at @KLASresearch hosted events, we’ve been loading all of our conference collateral into an app. Because of the nature of our events (tight-knit, specific attendee lists) we put in bios on each attendee to facilitate networking time.


Video & Live-Streaming are Recent Additions to Many Healthcare Conferences


Live interviews, podcasts and now TV are apparently standard conference items now.

I wish big conferences like #HIMSS would video tape all sessions so I can go back later to watch ones I missed. I only see an average of 5-6 the whole week if I’m lucky

Here is 360 video of the #HITMC awards in #NewOrleans. (It starts w/big applause for @techguy!) At the time, it was live. If you watched w/ one of the 4 dozen #HIMSSVR glasses I sent, you felt “immersed”, as if you were actually, physically present! https://t.co/pjZwfx0vhW

Utilize @TwitterVideo #Twitterlists and hashtags.

Off the top of my head – if you were livestreaming, people offsite could participate real time. I think the taking of notes should be done by whomever is watching. Then, share the recap with all. – Kind of like a tweetchat recap!

Definitely live streaming as well as tweeting and providing speaker content / videos as a post-conference follow up….

This is worth repeating. FREE live streaming & smart hashtags. Increase access means fuller conversations. Example – #Medx

Live streaming is a beautiful thing! We have offices in Europe and it certainly comes in handy during company-wide meetings

I also like to live stream from sessions so those who are far can be a part of things.

Many of the World Health Care Congress events are live-streamed. But I think they charge.

That doesn’t make sense. Their conversations could be so much more interesting if it was free.

App to stream. Be bold, you matter too. Find confidence to engage our ‘high priests’ with no clothes.


Could Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality Eventually Replace In-Person Attendance at Healthcare Conferences?

I would also like to see more Virtual Reality (VR) incorporated into conferences! Has anyone used it at a conference, and what was it used for? 


Virtual Reality is breaking new grounds and is an experience people walk away talking about. VR has many opportunities for all these things.

VR all the way! Makes sitting at home exciting! Interactive polls and open Mic Q&A’s with home viewers would be great.

I love the idea of #VR conference attendance for those not able to attend in person. What @wareFLO did during the recent #VR conference was amazingly brilliant and can’t want until I can participate in more like that and maybe host one someday myself

VR is an amazing way to watch events, just ask @wareFLO ??. @savvypuppets is another very fun approach.

I liked how @BrennanSpiegel did #VR as well as @wareFLO for the live-streaming event at the #VR conference. Very interactive for so many miles away?

I’m a little torn on a lot of these ideas. Growing interaction for all is great. However, also need to consider resources available to conference. Size/scope will greatly influence what can be done.

“Five Ways to Use Interactive Technology to Create Great Customer Experiences” https://t.co/IxCjjFwjSN

“Five ways VR & mixed reality are set to transform how we do business” (and do conferences too!) https://www.technative.io/five-ways-vr-mixed-reality-are-set-to-transform-how-we-do-business/

Healthcare Conference Attendees Do Not Live on Tchotchke Alone


Never underestimate conference meals! They really set the tone of the conference. We’ve participated in conferences where meals have been poor in quality, or not sufficient for everyone attending. No one can pay attention with an empty stomach.

Attendees love to be fed. Also, freebies from exhibitors and contact lists of the exhibitors and speakers. So tangible items and contact info to help build valuable lists of different professions.

It’s a little thing, but the gift bag can be powerful when done correctly. Ex: We give #BestinKLAS lapel pins to vendors that attend our award ceremony. More than anything else, they LOVE the pins. They take them on sales calls. Swag that adds value is good swag.


Support Services at Healthcare Conferences


I just saw how this conference organizer offers: ‘Babysitting and Youth/Teen Programs (per child, per session)’ What do people think of this? I think it’s a good thing

AGREED!! Baby mommas and daddy’s can attend with a little support for their kiddos. Baby sitters and places to nurse and change diapers.

The baby sitting is a hard one. Especially since different people approach it differently. However, having a nursing room and diaper room is easy and so valuable to those who need it.

More Insight and Ideas About Making Healthcare Conferences Great Again


In the next and final post, I’ll share the balance of the information shared by #HITsm chat participants about what conference organizers, exhibitors and attendees can do to add value AFTER a healthcare conference including:

  • How Conference Organizers, Exhibitors & Attendees Can Share Content AFTER a Healthcare Conference 
  • The Value of Recapping Healthcare Conferences 
  • Ideas for Continuing Engagement After a Healthcare Conference 
  • How Conference Organizers & Speakers Can Collect Feedback 
  • And a few other random ideas, thoughts and criticisms about Healthcare Conferences 

In the meantime, and as always, consider following me on Twitter where I share information about healthcare data, technology, and services as @ShimCode.

Why Does the Value of a Healthcare Conference Almost Always End When It’s Over?

Why must most all of the value of a healthcare conference essentially cease flowing late in the day on which the conference ends? Why don’t more conference organizers, speakers, exhibitors and conference attendees keep the information, insight and ideas generated by 100’s and 1000’s of conference participants – and their often million$ of combined investment dollars – flowing AFTER the event is over?

Read this post and learn how to keep the value generated by a healthcare conference going long AFTER it’s over.


This is the fourth and final post recapping information, insight and ideas shared by participants of the Health Information Technology Social Media (#HITsm) chat on April 13th. You can check out the three previous posts here:

  1. BEFORE 
  2. DURING-1 
  3. DURING-2.

Note: To make it easy on the reader – and me – I’ve removed all the Twitter handles, hashtags and, in less than a handful of instances, corrected a few tweets to make them easier to read. You can read the entire, verbatim transcript here.


Keeping Engagement Going After the Healthcare Conference Ends



Agree that conference should be continuation of constant content and value. IMO, don’t like one and done approaches.

They (conference organizers) could provide digital version of the sessions (videos and presentations) to attendees

A consolidated library of resources to include presentations, forums, captured Q&A from conference, and, dare I say, a library of IP that can be shared among #HCO. For instance, sharing Medical Logic Module code, RFP templates, #CDI approach documentation.

YES!! Love this idea! I was stoked that the good folks at #HITMC were able to get us almost all the slides from the event from each presenter. Can’t be everywhere at once but so much great information provided in each session.

A follow-up Twitter chat could be interesting. People can share new things they learned, ask questions about anything they’ve been pondering since the conference, share new ideas influenced by the conference.

Encourage attendees and those who couldn’t attend to host mini meet-ups in their geographic areas or when they’re attending other conferences to reinforce your conference community.

If a topic takes off, live impromptu workshops/round tables can occur post talk incorporating ideas from virtual guests.

Additionally, they (organizers) can encourage networking, creating a list of emails of the attendees, but ONLY of those who would like their information to be shared among other attendees for business connecting purposes. No one likes too many emails either!


Conference Speakers & Presenters – and Exhibitors Too!


Provide a link to published slides, recorded sessions, and related artifacts (playbook, eBook, guide, documentation, source code). Organize a tweet-chat post-event to re-cap key insights and identify actionable next steps of collaboration.

Follow up with any slides and links that were referenced in the presentations, post video of the

As opposed to simply sharing slide-decks, what other artifacts or resources can be shared that the attendee can take away and use to implement at their organization.

Good stuff to share in the days after a conference event: Videos, Demos, Case, Studies, Infographics, Webinars. And slide decks, White papers or e-books. Articles or blog posts. Spec sheets. Special offers

Any way that you can push out information, without requiring much effort on attendees is key. Why make it complicated?

How Conference Attendees Can Extend Conference Value


I like to see “After Action” type content from attendees to get other’s impressions of their experience. So much the better when that content is aggregated and curated by the conference organizer!

In the Twittersphere, of course! Or connect on LinkedIn and keep the conversations going in a group.

So/me is often a labor of love, and of the sweat equity variety. If peeps add value to your event via amplification and reach, recognize them via s/o. Follow their work, and share their content. It ain’t only about YOU.

Follow up post conference with actionable information; no fluff, all stuff 

Post-Conference Summaries – In High Demand and Low Supply


Share a good recap of the event with all session artifacts – and supporting materials. On your website of course. This could be a huge attraction that provides value long after the conference is over. And be used for promoting the next event.

After conference, recaps can also be leveraged with writeups to be posted and shared on social media

Also, as @JulianaRuizCobo mentioned, they could also create a post-conference writeup covering main takeaways from the event and provide digital assets to compliment writeup

For @HealthITExpo, we’re going to create an e-Book with an actionable takeaway slide from every

Brilliant. We are really looking forward to #HITExpo. Curated content is where it’s at. Distill the most salient insights to summarize, but also highlight novel approaches that deserve additional awareness.

I like social media recap emails. Pull some of the best tweets from the day and email for each day. Effective and easy.

To me, it’s all about community and keeping in contact with people you connected with. Have a next step already planned out that you can announce at the end of the conference. Like – a recapapolooza tweet chat!


Healthcare Conference Feedback – Make it Easy & Bidirectional

Survey attendees to get additional feedback and work in recommendations to next year’s planning; share recorded events with attendees so they have an opportunity to listen to any sessions they may have missed.

Use post conference survey data to drive content throughout the yr. Was there a conf session or panel everyone loved or that generated a ton of discussion? Maybe that speaker/those speakers should broaden the audience & continue the discussion with a Part 2 tweetchat!

Be cool if session surveys were available real-time and online during the session. No one wants to complete a survey when they have another session/event to run to. Or will remember the detailed nuances a week later.

Conference Surveys or BINGO Cards?

Instead of a post-session rating questionnaire, maybe just give each attendee a bingo card upon entrance? The attached are rather funny – and spot on!

Ok that’s really good! And give great prizes when someone yells BINGO!

Exactly! And Precisely why my completed survey is here at home in my conference folder 2 months later! OOPS.

I like that idea! Or a customer panel that can share their feedback on a new product or service

Respond to feedback & incorporate it on an ongoing basis. Deliver an amazing experience, but always strive to be better & seek for where you’re missing the mark. Be candid, be honest, be open to creating something with your attendees, not just what you think they want.

After conference FEEDBACK to speakers on their prezo

Agreed! Did you see this, too? https://t.co/7Hq1uT7SxP @StudioNorthUSA’s take on the survey data.

One of the most valuable items from #HITMC this year was the “State of HITMC” survey. Benchmarking data driven by surveying is critical to understand how your organization compares and what adjustments you may consider

Bonus: At #HIMSS18 last month, a moderator went on and on about being respectful, silencing your phone and not tweeting. Then his phone went off 5 minutes later and he had a hard time turning it off.

Bonus: Once I overheard a conference leader scold one of their own sponsors for something that didn’t even matter. I walked away as fast as I could once I discovered what it was about. 


Those Were the Thoughts of 66 People, What Do You Think?


This post and the previous three posts summarized the information, insight and ideas 66 participants shared in over 500 tweets during the HITsm chat on April 13th. What information, insight and ideas do you have to share?

How to Use Twitter Moments to Bookmark & Organize Tweets


This is a hack that will save you lots of time and make you a more productive knowledge worker. It’s very easy to setup and use.

How many times do you come across a tweet that you don’t have time to read at the moment or that you want to share with someone and keep a record of? For years, people have used Twitter’s ‘Like’ button to bookmark tweets. But this system has several drawbacks including:

1. Others can see the tweet’s you’ve liked – your list of favorited tweets are accessible to everyone

2. Likes indicate a positive sentiment and what you save may be misinterpreted by others

3. People are alerted to tweets that you like

4. There’s no way to group tweets – they are all just in one big bucket

5. There’s no way to annotate the collection of tweets

6. You can’t easily share the tweets you’ve bookmarked with others

Historically, Twitter users have created all manner of workarounds to bookmark their tweets. Typically they either send the tweet to their email, copy and paste them to a document they review later or they DM them to someone else – even themselves.

Twitter to the Rescue! Sort of…


Earlier this year, Twitter released a new way to bookmark tweets. While an improvement over the previously non-existent way to bookmark tweets for future review, this new bookmark feature is still very limited, only works with Twitter’s mobile app and doesn’t address the drawbacks noted above.

If you’re using Twitters mobile app, this new approach Twitter came up with allowed you to do the following:

But this is not available for Twitter desktop version. You have to update the ‘www.twitter.com/handle’ URL by replacing ‘www.’ with ‘m.’  so you use ‘m.twitter.com/handle’ so you access Twitter’s ‘mobile’ code set.  Otherwise you’re limited to the following functionality. 


Notice that you’ve now lost the ability to ‘Share Tweet via…”

Do You Have a Moment? Here’s How to Use Unpublished Twitter Moments to Bookmark Your Tweets


Twitter’s Moment feature provides a very powerful way to bookmark tweets that address ALL of the limitations described above. I call this Bookmark Moments and here’s how it works.

1. Create a Twitter Moment

2. Give the Twitter Moment a name

3. Add a short description (optional)

4. Add an image to the Moment (optional)

5. Decide whether you want to share your bookmarks with others

If you want to share your ‘bookmarked’ tweets, go ahead and ‘Publish’ the Moment, otherwise leave it unpublished to keep your bookmarks private.

6. Repeat the above steps for each ‘bookmark folder’ you want to create.

See below for some sample bookmark categories.

Bookmark Away!


Now, whenever you encounter a tweet that you want to bookmark to read later and/or share with someone else, simply add the tweet to one (or more) of the Twitter Moments you’ve created as follows:

1. Click on the “V” to the right of the tweet

     Desktop Version


     Mobile Version – Android


2. Add the tweet to one of the Moments you’ve created.

    
     Desktop Version


     Mobile Version – Android


You can browse to any of the Moments you’ve created or even create a new Moment on the fly.


Viewing your “Bookmark Moments”

Later on, when you want to review the tweet, simply browse to the Moment you created! No futzing with changing the URL in the desktop client. And no browsing through a potentially huge list of uncategorized tweets!

Maintaining Your “Bookmark Moments”


You can access your Twitter Moments via the Twitter menu:

To remove tweets from a Bookmark Moment, simply delete it from the Moment.


Move tweets between Bookmarks Moment by accessing the Moment and using existing Moment maintenance functions.

Share your Bookmark Moment by simply publishing the Moment.

Embed Your Bookmarked Moments in a Web Page

Another cool feature of Bookmark Moments is that Twitter generates HTML code that allows you to easily embed any
Twitter Moment’s you create in a web site. This offers all kinds of additional flexibility.

Save & Organize Your Tweets in Unlimited Ways


Create a Twitter Moment to categorize each of the types o
f tweets you want to keep. Think of these as folders. 


I’m not aware of any limitations as to the number of Twitter Moments you can create. While everyone has their own unique requirements, the following are probably useful for most people:

  • To Share with Others
  • To Read – High Priority
  • To Read – Low Priority
  • Reference/Evergreen Content

I’ve created dozens of Bookmark Moments in a number of categories. Here are some of them:

  • Conference Related
  • Content for Client ABC
  • Content for Client XYZ
  • General Catch-All
  • HITConfGuy & Related
  • Share with Family
  • Social Determinants of Health
  • Social Media & Marketing
  • To Share With Others
  • Tools & Resources
  • Tweetchat Topics

There You Have It! Easy Peasy!


The above approach is quite simple to set up and use. Most importantly, it addresses all of the issues with the current approach for bookmarking tweets.

  • Tweets you bookmark can be kept private
  • You can choose to share your bookmarks with others
  • People won’t interpret a Tweet you’ve bookmarked as something you ‘Like’
  • People won’t be alerted each time you bookmark a tweet
  • You can categorize tweets – and even add a description and an image if you want
  • Your bookmarked tweets will be available wherever you have access to your Twitter account – which is everywhere you have an Internet connection.