Planners Provide the Plot, Attendees Shape the Story

Recently, I had a phone interview with Storify Co-Founder Burt Herman while he was attending the 2013 South by Southwest Festival, held in Austin March 8–17. Wandering through thousands of festival-goers, he explained how much “noise” can be created on the Internet when everyone is Tweeting, Instagramming, Facebooking, YouTubing, you name it. Storify, a social media-aggregating platform, helps shape that noise into readable, engaging stories.

After our conversation, I wasn’t surprised to stumble upon an article about Storify being indicative of the future of content. Since everyone is a reporter now — number one on the list according to Contently reporter Karl Hodge —  more and more, readers shape the news we consume. In the same way attendees drive a meeting.

Because of social media, attendee feedback is instantaneous and meeting professionals can communicate with their audiences in ways they haven’t been able to before. Attendees can hold more conversations, make more requests, be more places at once, and receive attention in ways they didn’t in years past. Now event planners can document and monitor their conferences in a whole new way. By following the experience of attendees, they can gauge reactions to their events and enhance their meetings every year.

With the rapid evolution of Storify, the platform is now being used in ways that surprised even Herman. To discover more interesting and cutting-edge ways planners, suppliers, and attendees are using Storify, check out the upcoming Working Smarter feature in the May issue of Convene.

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