Tuesday, October 20, 2020

2020 BIZ: #VWEDU: Networking support at online events. Conferences, conventions, trade shows. A major function is networking. How can it work online?


Networking support at online events. 
Conferences, conventions, trade shows.  
A major function is networking.   
How can it work online? 
Consideration of how networking could work in large online events.
OSCC 2019 WELCOME 

What generally happens in these events? 

  • Big auditorium presentations 
  • Small localized displays, exhibit booths, poster presentations
  • Small meetings or workshops with selected persons conferring or working together
  • Opportunities to interact with the media
  • Networking 
  • Hanky-panky

Networking support at online events

  • Virtual Trade Shows: Pros and Cons
  • One of the cons is networking support: you don't bump into people in the hall
  • What can replace the hall and the cocktail model? 
  • User profiles with interest measures
  • Interest measures
  • Big data handling
  • Search support
  • Clustering
  • Suggested contact list
  • Interest group sessions
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Supports for networking art online events

User profiles with interest measures

  • Prepare a list of interests commonly recognized in the business
  • Ask them to list their interests.
  • For their interests on your interest list get responses on a 7-item  Likert scale
  • Not interested to Strongly interested

Big data handling

  • A computer handles networking in a database (imagine a spreadsheet).
  • A row for each person and columns for attributes (interests and contact information).
  • For a big meeting, the database must be able to scale up to handle everyone.
  • The software for that is something like Amazon Aurora Serverless

Search support

  • People who want to network will seek ways to do it.
  • Digital-savvy people will expect to use search for networking.
  • They will search for people who share some of their interests.
  • That is an AND relation across their chosen interest subset.  
  • The capability is in the database system. 
  • The only need is an entry panel and instructions for using it.

Cluster analysis

  • Event management could take its own initiative on networking.
  • Perform a cluster analysis based on similarity of interests.
  • Use the clusters to suggest a list of possible contacts to each person.
  • Note that the list could still be used after the event, with email addresses.
  • (An advantage over the hall and cocktail model.) 
  • and to choose topics for breakout rooms.

Suggested contact list

  • Use the clusters to suggest a list of possible contacts to each person.
  • Note that the list could still be available after the event, with email addresses.
  • (An advantage over the hall and cocktail model.) 

Interest group sessions

  • Use the clusters to suggest a list to choose topics for breakout rooms.
  • An online event need not end after a few days, 
  • Thus interest group sessions could continue indefinitely.
  • As could other uses for the registration database.
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  • Selby Evans in Kitely and Hypergrid, Thinkerer Melville in Second Life.

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