As of this post, SmartCatholics has hosted 2 online events, and helped coordinate 2 others. It’s been an amazing journey with you, our event attendees!
But we’re never done learning. And we believe that we can always find a better way to make an event a more helpful and exciting experience.
This is why I’m so grateful to you; when I asked for your feedback on our last event, you responded with suggestions and ideas.
We listened hard to all of them. And completely overhauled everything. Seriously.
Here’s what you said to us:
1. “Add an event shop, where you can browse and purchase speaker material”
We thought we’d done that by including links to speaker websites, but it wasn’t clear enough.
So we’re using a new setup that has a beautiful vendor booth area. You’ll be able to browse both speakers and vendors to sign up, get discounts, and more easily shop for supporting materials.
2. “Share more than just data, share more experiences… Some of the presenters could have gone deeper with a single idea.”
This was a really great suggestion. And it’s really been mind-blowing how many attendees messaged us to thank us for the short talks.
So we’re returning to our first inspiration of TED-style talks. This way the speakers aren’t trying to crunch an entire talk into 15mins, but are more focused on ideas worth sharing, and stories worth telling.
3. “Create more interaction with the attendees to develop a sense of long-lasting community”
I can’t tell you how excited I was to see that. Over 60% of people who responded to my survey wanted some kind of ongoing community. But more than that, better Q&A sessions to help attendees with ice-breakers, and making new friends.
So our next event focuses a lot more time on community-building activities and ice-breaker sessions. Friends fuel formation.
And for those who want to stay in touch with the community after the event, they can join us in a new community we’re launching soon. Real soon.
4. “More live events – less pre-recorded video.”
From the beginning, we wanted to bring you that. And our answer was live sessions in a private Facebook group. But you – the attendees – were hungry for more interaction with speakers.
And speakers were psyched to schedule time to go live and share stories and firesides with folk.
So we overhauled our next event to have more of that. In fact, the entire event itself is all live events, and you get access to the recordings ahead of time. More on that soon!
5. “Too many things going on between all the videos and the group.”
We agreed. We were launching all the pre-recorded video so that you could watch it on-demand. And at the same time were scheduling up a bunch of live events in a Facebook group.
So we fixed it. No more constant emails throughout the day reminding you of the next event. No more multiple things happening on three different websites.
Now, everything happens on one event website, all the live sessions, the Q&As, and keynotes. One schedule, one place to grab your ticket and start meeting people.
Some of your praise:
This was really special to hear from some of you;
“I liked being able to log in as my schedule allowed. Most of the content was awesome.”
“Priests and speakers delivered the truth about the spiritual battle we are in, which men should be leading the defense of their families.
Appreciated the focused talks and speakers from Canada and Australia joining as well.”
“Fantastic content, short, sweet and practical.”
“Loved the caliber of presentations, relatively short time duration and the ability to go back and watch at a later time.”
“Best money I have spent this year.”
We’re so glad you joined us, and we’re always, always ready to listen, learn, and improve.
Because when Catholics understand our Faith in the modern world, we experience greater personal joy, and confidence in sharing the good news.