Looking back at the hot conference topics in 2011

13 12 2011

At the start of the year, we made some predictions about the topics that were likely to dominate the conference landscape in 2011 and, as is now traditional, we want to take a moment to reflect on the year. You may remember that in our original post(hyperlink) we thought the hot topics in 2011 would be:

Many of our suggestions were right on the money – a number of these topics have been growing for years now and are almost sure to continue to be important going forward. However, we also missed a few runaway trends (like Big Data), so want to spend the next few posts looking back, analysing the hot topics and providing insight on the conference industry in 2011.

We’ll also be making our predictions for 2012 in the next few weeks, so don’t forget to check back regularly!





Hot conference topics and themes for 2011: healthcare

4 03 2011

Healthcare is another topic which will continue to grow and see success throughout 2011 as many trials using healthcare IT and telehealth mature and technology improves. This is also likely to be driven by new models of healthcare, with smart connected devices monitoring our health, providing diagnoses and healthcare as a game (such as mobile apps like cardiotrainer which challenge your friends to burn as many calories as you).

Alongside the established healthcare IT and telehealth events like WoHIT and Wonca, these topics will also find their way into cloud and telecoms events at an increasing rate as the prevalence and utility of connected devices and new ways of gathering and storing health data develop. This convergence has already led to events like the Mobile Healthcare Industry Summit and is likely to see further growth.
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Looking ahead to 2011’s hot conference topics and themes

9 02 2011

Having looked back at 2010, it’s the perfect opportunity to reignite our tradition of outlining our thoughts on the hot topics and themes in this year’s conference landscape. They are below in no particular order:

As you can see there are a few old favourites on here but also some new arrivals. We’d love to get your thoughts in the comments on whether we’ve missed any or even got some wrong.

Personally I’m really excited by the mobile and apps space at the moment, there’s so much innovative stuff going on – dual core phones, connected everything and new device formats. However, there’s increasing crossover between these topics, apps are, of course, available in your mobile, but now apple has launched the Mac app store, Google launched the Chrome Web Store and Amazon has hinted heavily that there’s an Amazon Appstore on the way too. I can also access Dropbox on my phone, edit my Google Docs and use other cloud services on the move; there’s going to be a real challenge around the ‘liquid experience’ whereby my apps look familiar and interact with each other across platforms.

These game changing advances and disruptors like the iPad will continue to drive conference agendas as senior management is put under increasing pressure to keep up in the social media age. This should see attendance rates remaining high at industry leading events and a great deal of press and media interest in conference content as the consumerisation of IT marches on.

However, we’re also likely to see some conference producers attempting to cash in on these trends, launching new, low quality events pandering to the latest trends. Knowing how to spot, and avoid these events is key. A specialist agency can help you plan for the year ahead, identify your key targets and evaluate any invitations you might receive to speak at (or even attend) new conferences and ensure that your speaking programme really takes off in 2011.





2010 conference themes recap: healthcare

28 01 2011

Healthcare remained a huge topic throughout 2010, particularly in light of the healthcare reform in the US and budget cuts in the UK. This was pushed by the continuing uptake of telehealth and healthcare IT which was driven not only by cost and efficiency, but also new models of healthcare as a game (think Wii Fit and Microsoft Kinect) and cell phones becoming smart connected objects used to monitor our health.

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Because of this, we also saw healthcare sneaking on to agendas at leading mobile and telecoms events and featuring at some high-level cloud conferences. But there was also a flutter of new healthcare IT events in various emerging markets taking advantage of these advances and the benefits of telehealth.





Looking back at the 2010 conference landscape

11 01 2011

At the start of last year we made some predictions outlining what we thought would be the hottest topics and themes in the conference landscape. Now that 2010 has passed and 2011 is upon us we want to look back at our predictions and see which came to pass and which were made in haste.

In our original post we predicted that the following would be big in 2010:

Many of our predictions ran true, although there have been a few surprises. Over the next few posts we’ll look back on our original thoughts and see what happened compared to what we expected. We’ll also be making our annual prediction for the hot topics in 2011; watch this space!





The year ahead: Healthcare

1 02 2010

With analysts predicting a meltdown of global healthcare systems in the next 10-15 years, the healthcare dilemma has steadily been permeating the business and technology space and is fast moving higher up the agenda. This is evidenced by many of the world’s leading tech companies making a play for the healthcare sector (yes, even Google is involved), and eHealth and Telehealth technologies are two key areas that will continue to be popular in 2010.

While virutally all general healthcare events will feature some element of eHealth technologies, events such as Med-e-tel, CeBIT Telehealth, Health Information Technologies, TeleMed & eHealth and the National Telecare Conference have conference programmes that will focus entirely on eHealth and Telehealth.  All of these events get at least a six month start on developing their programmes and inviting speakers so get in touch early on to pitch.





Starting from the beginning: Looking ahead at 2010

29 01 2010

January. Start of a new year, a new decade even, new beginnings and a new blog! Cruddy weather, post-holiday depression and impossibly ambitious resolutions aside, this is the one time of the year that most people feel optimistic about what they can achieve in the next 12 months – a clean slate (or Pad?) if you will.

So in this, our very first blog post, we thought it appropriate to stick with this theme and offer our thoughts on the conference themes that we think will be big in 2010 and why. They are below in no particular order.

Agree? Disagree? Did I miss some? Drop me a comment – we’d love to hear your thoughts on the hot themes for the year ahead.

Of these six themes, I personally think mobile is the most exciting of the bunch.  What? Recovery you say?  Pah!  Economics can’t find me the nearest pub or give me Doodle Jump. My recent acquisition of an iPhone has me spending more time on it than I care to admit, and my monthly bill for app purchases is rivaling my weekly grocery bill.  My esteemed colleague Chris would disagree with me (hates iPhones – has an HTC), but I think the popularity of the iPhone and all it can do is the reason that ‘mobile’ is on everyone’s lips (consumers and industry alike) this year, and why it will be a hot conference topic.

Over the next week we will be looking in more detail at each of these hot themes, so stay tuned!