I recently wrote a post about the importance of attending voice over conferences, along with what I think are a few of the best ones. Now I want to talk about the process that goes into choosing which conference is right for you, because there are A LOT of options out there. If you’re new to the business, this can be a little overwhelming, so use the following information to guide you as you narrow down the choices.
1. Logistics - Where and when is the conference being held? How much does it cost to attend? Obviously, these are some of the most important pieces of information, as the when, where, and how you’re going to get there can be deciding factors, along with the total expense you’ll incur. Don’t forget, in addition to a registration fee, you’ll also have lodging, travel, food, and other miscellaneous expenses.
2. Topics - What topics will be covered at the conference? Many conferences offer a variety of topics, including audition and acting tips, tech information, and business management practices. Take a look at the conference website to be sure the topics being offered are ones that are of interest to you as a professional.
3. Approach - What’s the format of the conference? Are there workshops to attend? Are there lectures by other professionals? Some conferences offer a mix of approaches, while others stick to just one or two. Is there any time between sessions or are there several that overlap.
4. Agenda - Take a look at the daily agenda to see if it suits your purposes for attending. Whether you’re going to learn more about a specific topic, network with others, hand out business cards, or all of the above, make sure that the agenda allows for this.
5. Speakers - Voice over conferences usually offer a great line-up of speakers. These folks are experienced professionals who are sharing their expertise and insights with you, and it’s a great learning opportunity. Read the speaker bios and see if there are any people that you especially want to see.
6. Attendees - If the conference website shows a list of attendees, give it a glance to see if any names jump out at you. Knowing who’s going to be there ahead of time can help you compile a mental list of people to seek out while you’re there.