Conferences are the best way to get up to speed on the latest developments in your industry, rub shoulders with like-minded people and hear inspiring speeches from some of the top leaders in your field. While there are many competing professional gatherings every year, there are some conferences in the US that really stand out from the rest because of their cult-like following and influence on their respective fields. Here are five essential conferences everybody should consider visiting this year.
SXSW or South by Southwest conference is held in Austin, Texas. The 2017 SXSW conference runs from March 10th to March 19th. While the SXSW conference is best known for its concerts, it includes film festival screenings, a Startup Village for those trying to start their first business or seek venture capital and high-tech demos. There are new product demonstrations by IBM and Dell. Attendees can sit in programming, Bitcoin blockchain, fintech and machine learning talks aimed at Silicon Prairie, the high-tech industry based in Austin.
Unlike the Sundance Film Festival or California tech conferences, SXSW is accessible to the public instead of being limited to the elite. Depending on the access level you choose, the event costs between $800 and $1,700.
The Startup Conference
The Startup Conference is held near San Francisco on May 17th. The Startup Conference is one of the largest tech conferences in Silicon Valley, which is why it made this list. It brings together several thousand entrepreneurs and gives you a chance to promote your own idea or business. You have the possibility of being featured on CNET if you attend.
The conference costs between $109 and $225. Unlike SWSX, it is a one-day event. The upside is the unparalleled networking opportunity this conference presents. The downside is the sheer volume of people you’re competing with if you are trying to meet one of the big names in attendance or want to talk to the founder of a specific startup.
Moz is a digital marketing company whose blog is seen as the standard for SEO, internet marketing, brand management and social media outreach. MozCon is a three-day conference held in Seattle from July 17th through the 19th. This in-depth series of seminars covers everything from content to social media to SEO to analysis tools. It is also a great place for those who work in internet marketing in any fashion to network with peers and major names in the field. The price ranges from $799 to $1,299.
MIT Sustainability Summit
Massachusetts Institute of Technology or MIT is a world-renowned engineering school and major research university. If there is an amazing innovation that reaches the world stage, there is a good chance it was invented at MIT.
The MIT Sustainability Summit is held in Boston on April 28th. It brings together leaders in finance, technology, science, and development to discuss future trends in technology, climate, economics, and public planning. Conference attendees can play roles in simulations to understand the likely impact of policy changes and technology implementations. Unlike many climate change and sustainability conferences, this event is chocked full of solutions, not complaints about the problem or lectures that can only be described as calls for action. There are workshops and speaking events planned.
HRO Forum is the go to event for human resources personnel. Whether you are struggling to deal with demographic shifts in the workplace, want to learn how to handle a mobile and increasingly distributed workforce or want to understand key regulations that impact hiring, firing, and workforce development, the HRO Forum is where you want to be. This conference hosts many speakers and subject matter experts on how to make your HR department or recruiting firm more effective.
The HRO Forum is held from May 1st through May 3rd in Chicago. Depending on your access level, it costs between $495 and $1,695.
These conferences offer something for everyone and offer plenty bang for your buck. For those that want to see a mix of cutting edge technology and culture, SXSW is the place to be. For those who have to network with Silicon Valley’s best and brightest, you want to attend The Startup Conference. The head of HR or key players in your Human Resources department should attend HRO Forum. MozCon is critical for your website administrator, marketing, and social media gurus. The MIT Sustainability Summit is the best place for those who are interested in not just sustainability as a concept but making it a reality. If you ever want to visit one of these, we strongly suggest you visit their websites to get more information and book your tickets as soon as possible.