Andy Johnson at The Idea Group Atlanta blog, has a great post this week titled, “Three Ways to Make Panel Discussions More Engaging, Authentic & Honest“.
These are great ideas! We would like to add another. We generally think Open Mic is a bad idea. With open mic you have ….
- Limited Number of Questions that can be asked during precious time
- The Mic hog, who is self promoting
- Anti Questions – Asking about colorful questions that put Exec’s on the spot
- Worse Questions – Airing dirty laundry
- Heavy Accents – Hard to understand / interpret the question
- No Log of Questions – Who Asked What?
- Only the loud outspoken are heard
Instead at @EventDay we like to recommend Digital Question and Answer. This can be done via Twitter, Text Message (SMS), Native Mobile APP, or a Web Page, and can even be locked down to only those attendees in the room for private conversations! The major benefits of digital Q&A are …
- Logging all questions (Good and the bad)
- Cherry Picking – Instead of 5-10 Open Mic questions, you can get 100’s of questions, and then cherry pick questions that are appropriate to the panel.
- Full transparency, or Privacy. Some events show publicly all questions asked (Reddit Style), while others only Main Stage the approved Questions
- Optionally Attract a larger audience online via Twitter
- Spam Control – Front Door Accept or Decline questions. Accepted Question show Backstage.
- SME (Subject Matter Expert) Moderation – What questions are going to make the main stage?
- Tied in with Digital Signage, Questions can be Displayed on the Main Stage, Branded to your Event.
- Before a Question hits the Main Stage, they can be displayed on a Preview Monitor to Give the Panel a heads up on what’s coming.
There is a lot of discussion here, this should get your creative juices flowing.
Panels can make or break your event! Add a little EventDay Technology to give your Panel Talks the upgrade they deserve!