While discussing what our new website should/could look like, we were also discussing a lot about what the conference this year should/could look like. It was tough. Should it be in-person? COULD it be in-person? Is it inside? Outside? Hybrid? Completely virtual? We went back and forth, up and down (just like the number of positive cases in the state), and looked out at other large-scale events to see what they were doing.
Six Reasons Why We Chose San Antonio Startup MONTH
- Zoom fatigue is real, y’all. I don’t know about you, but I can only take so many Zoom experiences in a day. When there’s one of those days where it’s three Zooms back to back, it can be a strain on the eyes and on the brain. Usually, we operate on the model “the more the merrier,” but when we imagined five back-to-back Zooms…it did not seem like a good idea. And just because it’s on Zoom, it doesn’t have to be a “meeting-like format” — we have some fun stuff planned to break up the monotony.
- The schedule emulates TV programming (somewhat). As you plan ahead, you can depend on SASW that on every Monday, Wednesday and Friday of October, there’ll be something going on — a workshop, a panel, a spotlight interview, etc.
- You can participate on your own time. If you missed Monday, you can watch it the following day. Spreading it out this way will allow you the flexibility to watch a session when you’re free (whether that’s 8am or 10pm), but we hope you consider being a part of the conversation when it goes live!
- High-profile speakers. Moving most of the conference virtually keeps us optimistic about who we can ask because participating from the comfort of their own home is a much “better ask” than flying speakers in at a certain date/time. Shoot for the stars, right??
- Last-minute additions. Now…we’ve added last-minute events historically, but a whole month of programming will give us better lead time for those last-minute events. At least I’d like to think so. Instead of a 72-hour turnaround time, maybe it’s a full week. This conference will be focused on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays…but if there’s something compelling, we’re open to Tuesdays and Thursdays. Key: follow us on social media and download the Whova app, so you don’t miss out.
- Expanding our reach. We’re able to broaden our reach by going virtual. We’re no longer limited to the parking challenges we’ve faced in the past when we held our conference on Houston Street (although, we will miss Basecamp and the bright splashes of purple and pink downtown). You can be in Boerne, UTSA campus…hell, you can be in Houston, Austin, Dallas or El Paso, and be part of the conversation.
We saw the opportunities that we wouldn’t have had if this was “normal.” It’s true, we won’t have our beautiful Basecamp like last year. You won’t see purple shirts running up and down Houston Street, but we may never get a chance like this again.