The second edition of New Media Europe has come and gone, leaving its attendees newly energised and freshly informed on how they can use new media like podcasts, blogs, and vlogs towards sharing their passion, expanding their businesses, and promoting their brands. It was both fun and inspiring to be able to interact with people who are the best in their fields, as well as fellow new media users. In fact, it was a perfect testament to how important it is to just show up sometimes, and get to know the industry on a personal level.
Podcasters in particular can benefit so much from a conference like #NMEU. It’s easy to sit behind a mic, behind the persona you’ve taken on over the air, but there are great opportunities out there that can only come about by going face to face with people in your industry, who can give you great insight.
But if you’re still not convinced about how attending a conference can benefit you, then read on. I’ve got three great reasons for you.
Whether you’re a newbie or a veteran podcaster, you’ll always come away from a conference with some new perspective or skills under your belt, from new tools to content and distribution strategies. This year’s event wasn’t short of keynotes, workshops, and panels that were sure to shake anyone out of their creative ruts. We were inspired by podcaster Dan Miller’s Finding Your Sweet Spot, on how to tap into just the right ratio of talent and passion that and bring in earnings, as well as Steven Picanza’s invigorating rendition of the Creative Hustler’s Manifesto.
There were many useful and informative workshops too, like Krishna De’s Snapchat for Business Marketing – a Beginner’s Guide, proving that you should never underestimate the power of up-and-coming social networks and how an effective campaign and strategy can help you distribute your own podcast. Paula Cordeiro also gave personal insights on how digital storytelling and being fearlessly authentic propelled her business and podcast (hosted on Spreaker, by the way) to success.
Much of the meat of a conference is in the in-between moments: right before and after talks, during designated networking sessions, over lunch; those are your chances to get some face time with your peers. At New Media Europe, we had a number of tea breaks when we could mingle and meet fellow attendees, speak to the sponsors, or approach speakers. These are great opportunities to exchange ideas and updates on the industry, and catch that contagious enthusiasm that most conferences foster. You never know – through the power of collaboration you could find your next great idea, or potential partner.
Of course, these kinds of events aren’t just for meeting new people, but for touching base with your existing connections, too. Francesca Gino, a professor at Harvard Business School says it best:
“Good networking not only means creating new connections. It also means maintaining and strengthening existing ones.”
It was fantastic to catch up in person with the organisers of NMEU themselves, like Izabela and Mike, as well as exchange a few ideas and feedback with our Spreaker users. Nothing beats that one-on-one discourse that could help improve a great product.
Stretch Your Podcasting Muscles
Podcasters, you’ve also got a leg-up at these kinds of the events. Podcasts are a flexible enough medium, and with apps like Spreaker Studio for iOS and Android, you can pull out your smartphone or tablet and start recording right there and then – and what better excuse to get the conversation going?
Dorie Clark gets it right:
“Interviews can be a surprisingly effective networking strategy, because you’re “leading with value” when connecting with someone prominent. In other words, instead of introducing yourself to someone with a request to take from them (a request to “pick their brain” is actually a request for free consulting services), your first interaction is one of giving, because your interview will expose them to new audiences in print or online.”
Sounds exciting doesn’t it? It can’t be stated enough that conferences can be a truly fruitful experience for podcasters, where the possibilities to learn and expand your content and brand are endless. So, get out of the studio once in awhile, we want to see you!