How often do you overhear conference attendees gush,
"I never go anywhere without my giant, 10lb three-ring binder of annual conference proceedings"?  

If you are hearing crickets chirp, it is probably because technology has rendered your printed proceedings obsolete.

Technology has given your attendees easy, quick, 24/7 access to anything they want... And it fits in their pocket, purse and handbag without giving them back pain. The advancement of smartphones and tablets has exploded in the meetings industry. As a meeting planner, it's important to make sure your annual conference is “keeping up with the Joneses.” (Yes, that means printed conference proceedings, are the new mom jeans.  And just try putting that CD or flash drive in your tablet.) 

But it's more than just staying on top of the trends. Taking your proceedings online brings a lot of benefits not only for you as a meeting planner, but also for attendees, sponsors and speakers alike.







Oval: 1Extend the life of your conference.
Attendee engagement should begin way before, and extend way beyond your annual meeting, and the best tool you can use to generate engagement is your online conference proceedings.

Providing session handouts and speaker presentations online before your annual meeting will help attendees choose which sessions are right for them. Additionally, they will be more engaged during the actual session if they've reviewed the materials beforehand.

Similarly, you can keep the conference hype up for months after your meeting. Try sending a monthly email linking out to recorded sessions and presentations hosted online in a digital publishing platform. 

Oval: 2
Maintain greater control and management of your content.

One of the biggest concerns of meeting planners, associations and speakers alike is managing access to valuable conference proceedings. A lot of time and money is invested in creating conference proceedings, and therefore you may only want registered attendees and/or members to access the content.

Online conference proceedings allow you to control who can see what content and for how long. Maybe you want to give attendees and members the ability to see all the conference proceedings while allowing non-attendees and non-members to view the proceedings for a fee. That wouldn't be possible with printed proceedings or conference flash drives, but with online technology, you are able to control access.


Oval: 3Gain enhanced searching capabilities.
Typically, the conference proceedings for your annual meeting encompass a large amount of content including session handouts, presentation outlines and technical papers.

Instead of thumbing back and forth between the table of contents and specific documents, attendees can simply type the session number, name or speaker (depending on how your content is organized) into the search box and be taken straight to the technical paper they are looking for. 


Oval: 4One size fits all with responsive design.
Attendees and members are now using a variety of devices to access content, all with varying screen sizes including desktop computers, tablets and smartphones.

Using responsive design you can develop one site that is optimized for all devices. Content sites can now be designed to recognize the device, and provide the optimal viewing experience based on the screen size.

Oval: 5

Last minute updates are not an issue.

No matter how many reminder emails you send, there are always a handful of speakers who do not turn in their presentations on time. When you are providing attendees proceedings in print or on CD or flash drive content cannot be easily updated.

With online conference proceedings, meeting planners are able to easily update presentations or add new speaker materials quickly and easily. 




Oval: 6Create a historical archive of your conferences.

Keep an ongoing archive of your annual meetings by storing all your conference proceedings in the same online location year after year.

An online archive of conference proceedings provides a great historical reference for your association, and can be used to increase non-dues revenue by selling access to past conference proceedings. Either way, your online proceedings serve as a great reference point for years of annual meetings.


Oval: 7Eliminate the stress around print and distribution.

Printed conference proceedings can lead to a lot of stress. Between determining print quantities and distribution issues, a lot can go wrong. Online conference proceedings completely eliminate any of these issues, making your life simpler.

Oval: 8

Online proceedings serve as a great conference marketing tool.

Content marketing is not a new concept. Associations are now fully aware the power their content from meetings and training events holds for marketing to new members and remaining relevant to current members.

Use the previous year's conference proceedings to entice people to register for your upcoming annual meeting. In addition, you can show previews of content to entice people to join your association for full access. For example, publicly share the first two pages of your key note speaker's technical paper before they hit a pay wall where they either need to pay for membership, or temporary access.


Oval: 9Utilize Google Analytics for insights on attendees.

Being able to make intelligent decisions around your annual meeting education is critical. With printed proceedings and conference flash drives, you lose out on being able to know what content attendees are actually viewing and sharing.

Putting you conference proceedings online allows you to take advantage of Google Analytics. This allows you to see exactly what content is being viewed and for how long, making executive decisions on your future meetings much easier and more intelligent.


Often times, associations feel split between their younger, tech-savvy members and their more traditional members. This frequently makes association executives reluctant to take their printed conference proceedings online. But, who says you have to choose between one format and the other?


Delivering your conference proceedings in multiple formats allows you to reach the most attendees and members. Whether it is a combination of printed and online proceedings with access via a mobile event app, or a conference flash drive paired with online proceedings... the choice is yours and the possibilities are endless!






Omnipress helps associations collect, produce and deliver educational resources for their members.