We are now almost a month removed from SPSNH and it has been just enough time for the glow to start to fade and for life to start getting back to normal. The event was wildly successful and somehow managed to receive nothing but positive reviews. There were a few things that I noted that are worth mentioning:
1.) Drop off between registration and attendance was between 30-40%.
2.) Doing 6 keynotes instead of 1 made the day interesting, but did not draw people in for the early sessions the way that a big name keynote might have.
3.) Planning 3 tracks (ITPro, Dev, End User) at 2 different skill levels (Beginner & Advanced) and keeping the tracks consistent in the same room so that people weren’t hunting for their next session was a BIG hit.
4.) Todd Klindt is a freaking rock star. This isn’t something that we learned, but it was certainly reinforced. The dude stepped up to deliver a session he had never seen until 5 minutes before when someone called in sick for the first timeslot & then presented to a standing room only group later in the day. Todd’s heroic efforts win the booby prize with Chris McNulty coming in a close second for taking on an extra session with only a day’s notice. The edge went to Todd because he had less prep time.
5.) Bags and paper collateral are passé. Give people a jump drive with digital collateral.
6.) Varying things up between 2010 & 2013 was very positive. The people who came to hear about 2013 wanted some 2010 as well & the folks who wanted to hear about 2010 were interested in some about 2013 too.
7.) Hot coffee available all day is a MUST.
8.) Speaker gifts instead of speaker shirts. We gave a nice warm jacket with the SPSNH & NHSPUG logos on them and I am still getting twitter comments about how much the speakers enjoy them. Plus, SPSRED “borrowed” our idea and their speakers loved them too
All in all, I am happy to say that SPSNH was a great success and we are looking forward to doing it again next year. There are things that we will look to do differently, but with a second SPSNH under our belt I think that we have a pretty good thing going up here in the “Live Free or Die” state.
My pictures from the weekend can be found here on my SkyDrive.