Technically, I retired from in-person events in 2016. I had helped run Content Marketing World since its 2011 inception, and although it kept me awake many nights, I loved every minute of it. I often thought of the event itself as my Christmas – the time of year when I got to see all my friends and work family at a big four-day party.

For those creators who do events, I salute you. It is a true calling to organize so many moving parts at once. Your audience doesn’t know how many things you need to think about. They don’t realize all the things that have led up to that moment. They don’t see the event rundown spreadsheet detailing the down-to-the-minute timing and exact locations for everything they see and experience from the moment they walk in until they leave. Every piece of music that will work for an audience with diverse musical tastes. Every piece of food to accommodate allergies, preferences, visual effects, etc. Every position of the signs to guide them through the event space.

We salute creators who do events. Your audience doesn't know how many things you need to think about before, during, and after the event, says Pam Pulizzi of @TheTiltNews. #CreatorEconomyExpo Click To Tweet

Of all the things that I’ve learned from operating events, I’ve realized people attend in-person events for reasons you may not fully realize. Sure, they attend to network. But some may seek a technology that makes their job easier. Others want to find someone who has the same goals to work with. Others want to get people interested in their product or service.

But then there are the results that attendees didn’t expect. One of my favorite stories is that of Bert van Loon and AJ Huisman. They are both from the Netherlands, but they met in Cleveland, Ohio. After finding each other and discovering they had similar goals, they opted to work together and have been ever since.

Unexpected connections is one of Pam Pulizzi's favorite thing about in-person events. #CreatorEconomy Expo #ContentEntrepreneur Click To Tweet

With the pandemic, many events went online to survive. While the education component was there, the networking was too hard to duplicate. With so many work-related meetings online as well as events – where attendees once found brief respite from the daily ground to expand their knowledge – many of us got “zoomed” out pretty quickly.

For me, the pandemic also led to the launch of The Tilt. Joe Pulizzi saw a niche audience in content creators that he really aligned with, and here we are. He asked me to go along for the ride again, and I said yes. Not long after, I heard the words from him I was sort of dreading: What do you think about doing an in-person event?

Now, after two years of doing our part to keep safe and mitigate the spread, we’re back to do an in-person event – Creator Economy Expo from May 2 to 4 in Phoenix.

I can only wonder how attendees will benefit from their in-person conversations and what they will learn to grow their content businesses in a Web3 world. And I wonder who or what will be my next Bert and AJ story.

What do you find beneficial from in-person events? Tag @TheTiltNews or use #CreatorEconomyExpo to share with us.

About the author

Pam has a background in working with non-profit organizations to build employee moral and community awareness. She led operations at Content Marketing Institute for 10 years and is now using those skills to help build a new community, The Tilt.