How to Host a Blockchain Conference

by Harry Prince,

13 January 2022

Chic blue space with an industrial spirit

Contents

Hello there, today we’re going to give you our very best advice on how to host a blockchain conference. Not just any old conference, and not a cryptocurrency conference either. A blockchain conference. 

Hosting a blockchain event is worthwhile for a whole load of reasons. But here’s two for the time being. Firstly, they’re popular. Meaning there are lots of attendees and sponsors to snap up. 

And secondly, blockchain technology has already started changing the world and will do so even more going forward. So make yourself a part of the community now to profit later. 

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This guide to hosting a blockchain technology conference will lead you through it all. We’ll start with choosing a theme, a speaker, event type, and venue. Then we’ll look at how to market it, sell tickets and more. So get stuck in! 

Although blockchain technology and cryptocurrency are intimately tied together, they’re not mutually exclusive. Yes, you can’t have cryptocurrency without a blockchain. Conversely, however, blockchain still has value and use without cryptocurrency. 

Cryptocurrency conferences have a singular theme. And not to be too crass about it, but it’s to make money. In comparison, blockchain events tend to be motivated by principles and more community-driven. 

However, that doesn’t mean that blockchain events are intrinsically an attractive prospect. It just means that in a competitive market – where tickets aren’t free – you need a hot, fascinating conference topic to lure in attendees.

There are many blockchains in exciting places all through the year. What will you offer them so that they have no other option but to allocate their time and money to get your blockchain event in particular? You need an enticing and relevant theme that will be of value and actionable to people in the field. Here are what we think will be the hottest trends in the blockchain community this year. 

  1. NFT’s: The general public consensus is that NFT’s are digital art. However, many commentators expect the NFT concept to develop its use quality. We’ve already seen this happen. 

For example, Glenfiddich sold limited bottles of their 46-year-old whisky with NFT’s to prove their providence. Nike and Dolce & Gabanna have done the same with some of their products. And with the growth of the Metaverse, we’ll see NFT’s become more diverse too. 

  1. Green blockchain initiatives: It’s well understood that blockchain technology is not environmentally friendly. This topic isn’t only an interesting choice because it’s a pressing issue, but because there is a difference of opinion on how to go about solving it, making it a perfect plot for debate. 

There’s the opinion that blockchain should move to a ‘proof-of-stake’ model as opposed to a ‘proof-of-work’ model. Then there’s those that consider investing in renewable energy to be a shrewder option. 

  1. National Cryptocurrencies: In 2021, El Salvador adopted Bitcoin as a legal tender. Many people in the crypto and blockchain community now expect more countries to adopt cryptocurrencies as recognised currencies. 

This is exciting for a blockchain conference theme as it’s the recognition in the mainstream that the community has been yearning for. At last, the technology built in the dream of changing the world has a real impact on it. If that doesn’t get attendees excited, then what will? 

  1. Metaverse: On the whim of one well-known company, the immersive and persistent 3D virtual reality is now set to change the world. Yes, the Metaverse is set to have a meaningful impact on everything from social media to the travel and event industry. 

The Meta group have confirmed crypto and NFT’s will be part of this world. With most of their job listings requiring knowledge of blockchain technology, it’s clear that this is a hot topic for the industry, and your blockchain conference could be where decisive outcomes are reached. 

  1. IoT Integration: IoT is not new, nor is its compatibility with blockchain technology. However, we are on the verge of exciting leaps forward in this area. Your blockchain conference could revel in talks of automation, micropayments, and blessed scalability that are going to be piloted thanks to advances in tech advances, including the rollout of the 5G network. 
  1. Vaccine Manufacturing and Tracking: Unfortunately, Covid-19 will be with us throughout 2022. Blockchain technology can cure vaccine tracking and distribution in a sad world where creating and selling fake vaccines are a real problem. 

Even in certified vaccine production, a blockchain pilot has reduced its time to recognise a dodgy batch in seconds instead of three days. And this is just the beginning. The blockchain community is serious about the world, making this a juicy forum for them to get stuck into. 

Choosing Guest Speakers to Your Blockchain Events:

There are several avenues to pursue when choosing guest speakers. Firstly, using your expert knowledge, you can handpick speakers. For a blockbuster keynote, you could shoot for the stars and land someone like Vitalik Buterin, the famed co-founder of Ethereum and Bitcoin Magazine.  

A shrewd bit of business would be to secure Bankless podcast and newsletter co-founders, Ryan Sean Adams and David Hoffman. With an audience of over 150,000, this would be drawn in something of an influencer effect. Especially considering they do, in fact, cover the important blockchain event in the calendar. Having them cover yours would immediately put yours in that category. 

A different avenue is simply asking your audience who they want to hear from. Yes, it could be as simple as just… asking. It’s been done before. Just look at The Blockchain Event and their call for speakers. It’s an elegant solution in understanding what your audience wants and turning interest into confirmations. 

And a final, different avenue to explore is to hire a speaker from an agency. This is a solid option because it saves time searching for someone yourself, and you don’t have to haggle with fees and the like. You can get flat rates and peace of mind. This is easier with agencies like A-Speakers now specialising in expert speakers for blockchain conferences. 

Top Side Event Ideas for Your Blockchain Conference

The modern attendee is looking for an event with depth; they’re looking for a unique experience, with engagement being the keyword in the event industry just now. 

The core event type for blockchain is conferences. That means expert speakers, discussing exciting topics, and fielding questions. Conferences are a staple event in this industry, just like any other. 

The emerging star of the blockchain event scene is hackathons. It makes sense, with both being technology-based endeavours. They also produce very desirable outcomes, such as generating ideas, meeting new talents, developing a product, growing your brand, and particularly for Etherium events, fostering community.

There are also workshop sessions. Similar to a conference in which a specific topic is a focus. However, workshops allow for more inclusive participation due to fewer attendees. We also feel that the fishbowl variation of the workshop event set up will mature into a popular event in its own right this year. 

After-work drinks aren’t just good excuses for a party – which they definitely are – but they’re exclusive networking and branding opportunities. They’re a chance to know more intimately about a project or a start-up, for investors to scope out new opportunities, and eager students to forge their way into the industry. 

Then you have your other wildcard event fixtures. It could be anything from bouldering, robot exhibitions, kayaking, discos, guest comedians, excursions, walking tours, brunches, you name it. 

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How to Choose a Venue For Your Blockchain Conference

This is the most exciting part for us. We are a corporate event platform, after all. The venue sets the tone for your event and reflects on you as a company. 

If your venue is considered boring or inadequate, your event and brand will be tarred with the same brush. 

If your venue is ambitious, beautiful, compelling, then its shine will rub off on your blockchain event and, ultimately, your organisation as a whole. 

Look at it like cutting corners on a report or a product. Time or money saved is a short term gain. Here we’ll show you examples of great venues for each of the event types we’ve highlighted above, with further links of where to find even more! 

Conference: Luminous Blockchain Conference Venue in Barcelona With Rustic Character 

How to Host a Blockchain Conference
Luminous Blockchain Conference Venue in Barcelona With Rustic Character via Spacehuntr

This luminous blockchain conference space is a glorious example of industrial refurbishment. It might not strike you as a traditional conference venue. Because it’s not, and that’s good.

For further advice on how to choose the perfect conference venue for your needs, have a look at these guides we made earlier: 

Workshop: Eclectic and Quirky Workshop Space for Blockchain Events in Lisbon

How to Host a Blockchain Conference
Eclectic and Quirky Workshop Space for Blockchain Events in Lisbon via Spacehuntr 

Workshops sessions need to be inspiring and vibrant. They’re not passive events where you sit and listen. They require your attention and your energy. 

That’s why this eclectic and quirky workshop space is perfect for blockchain events. It has a dynamic and creative soul to liven any encounter. 

For this reason, our selection of workshop rooms is exceptionally versatile. So check them out. You’re in for many pleasant surprises. 

Hackathon: Beautifull Bright Hackathon Venue in Paris 

How to Host a Blockchain Conference
Beautifull Bright Hackathon Venue in Paris via Spacehuntr 

And here we have a beautiful and bright hackathon venue in Paris. We like it because its architecture lends itself to the thrilling spectator ethos of hackathons. 

As well as being atmospheric, it also has spacious and well-equipped breakout rooms. Speaking to attendees and planners, this is one essential thing – and so often overlooked – for hackathons. 

To get an overview of what a good hackathon should look like, check out this guide to our favourite 11 hackathon venues in Paris

After-Work: Colorful and Authentic Patio for After-Work Events in Lisbon

How to Host a Blockchain Conference
Colourful and Authentic Patio for After-Work Events in Lisbon via Spacehuntr 

And our final example venue is this charming slice of authentic Portuguese heritage. It’s vibrant and versatile, meaning you can build any kind of after-work event here you like. 

Check out the rest of our after-work rooms here to find the perfect location to suit your style. 

How to Get Sponsorship For Your Blockchain Event

Knowing how to get sponsors for your event is essential for every event planner. Even the biggest events in the world that sell out their tickets rely on quality sponsorship to maximise their ROI. 

For those reading this, you’ll be happy to know that blockchain events are popular with would-be sponsors. Take Blockchain Expo – the worlds largest blockchain conference with up to 26,000 attendees. That’s a quality piece of sponsor bait already. Now consider that 56% of those attendees are director level or higher. The conclusion? There’s money to be made. 

You can hunt for your sponsors in-house, or you can save yourself time by working with an agency that specialises in it. Consider a group like TOP, which focus on event sponsorship. Or depending on the city you’re planning on hosting your blockchain event in, you could find local partners with the help of the local Chamber of Commerce. 

And remember, sponsorship isn’t the only way to have your blockchain event funded, mind you. Any city that takes its rank in the MICE industry will have a full-time Convention Bureau who might even be able to award you a grant if they identify it as a worthy event. 

Alternatively, you could have your event crowdfunded. With streamlined platforms like Gitcoin, you can present your event to generous community members who believe in your product.  

As you can see – despite how daunting it might seem – there are a lot of options out there for you. If you’d like to learn more, why not check out these 4 tips for growing your event sponsorship revenue. And finally, you can always ask one of our local experts for their business knowledge of local cities too.

How to Market Your Blockchain Conference  

The beauty of marketing blockchain events is that the industry is a global online community. What’s more, the people in blockchain are actively looking for conferences to attend. If you put yourself in that mix, you will get results. 

Your first point of call is to get your event on blockchain and crypto event calendars. These are open for anyone and are easy to navigate with only a minimal amount of information needed. Check out these event calendars: 

There are specialist blockchain technology marketing platforms too. A leader in this field is BountyHive. They offer custom content that includes articles, illustrations, whitepapers, and more. Plus, they guarantee your content will be published in the top-rated publications in the community. What’s more, they provide an intuitive and unique dashboard where you can see the campaign metrics for yourself. 

But let’s get back to this blockchain community ideal we mentioned. For blockchain marketing, messaging platforms are where a lot of the action happens. You might be intrigued to learn that instant messaging services are a key marketing mechanism of the blockchain event scene. 

There are two primary services. Firstly, there’s Telegram. This platform feels appropriate for a blockchain technology conference due to its end-to-end encryption philosophy. You can find some of the most popular groups here to get a feel for what’s happening. 

Secondly, there is Slack. This is popular as it’s instant messaging with a serious business tone. Check out these blockchain and crypto groups on slack to keep up to date with the latest news as it happens. 

For longer-form content, the blockchain community is heavily involved with Medium. From analyses, event recaps, metrics, and more, there’s lots of fascinating content to dive into and take part in. 

To learn more about marketing events, check out these expert guides: 

Selling Tickets For Your Blockchain Event

Now, more often than not, your events will be ticketed (especially during Covid). You need to consider two things in this regard – the how and the how much. 

The how is the 3rd party platform that can streamline buying/selling/registration and so on. From sport and music to blockchain, the event industry often turns to Eventbrite. It is an excellent choice for any type of event, large or small because it’s trusted, streamlined, automated, and you can use it for free. 

Then, of course, you need to figure out the how much. This is, of course, at the event planner’s discretion and is firstly dictated against the cost of running the event. And secondly how much you want to maximise profit. 

However, a word to the wise, the philosophy of blockchain conferences is accessibility, as opposed to the crypto conferences, which are more concerned with maximising profits. 

To learn from a real-life example, read this fascinating case study on balancing the budget of an EthCC community conference. 

We would also consider teaming up with Kickback for your next blockchain event. It’s an Ethereum-based event management service – so it’s a genuine blockchain technology conference service – that asks registrants to commit some ETH. 

The nuance of this platform is that if people are no-shows, the ETH will be shared among attendees or invested back into a future event. This means that it reduces people not turning up and helps balance the books. 

Incorporating Metaverse, Blockchain, and the Latest Technology 

Facebook – now known as Meta – took the world by surprise last year by introducing the Metaverse. People from all walks of life – especially the event industry – are scrambling to see what this means and how they can get in on the action. 

We’ve already seen it in the corporate world. Look at Meta and their Horizon Workroom – a space for intimate meetings. For larger events, you can look to the example of Mytaverse. So stop waiting to see what the Metaverse can do for your next blockchain event. It’s already here. 

Because at the end of the day, using blockchain technology is what makes something a blockchain technology conference, right? 

For example, you could incorporate blockchain technology into ticket sales. This is the promised safety in the supply chain in action. Put simply, it stops fraud with verified transactions implicit in the process. Plus,  it will also go some way to stabilise unfair prices in the second-hand market.  

And as we mentioned earlier, NFT’s are a huge topic of discussion in the public sphere. Well, you can do more than just talk about them. You can incorporate this blockchain-based technology into your next blockchain event! It can be something as little as gifts to lure in attendees. For example, check out when DC did a superhero NFT giveaway for those that registered for their Fan Dome Event. 

But, we could be here all day to talk about event technology, such as attendee engagement, data analyses, live feedback to improve the event as it happens, logistics simplification and more. So we’ll hold back for now, but bookmark these guides we’ve prepared earlier so you can learn more later: 

Upcoming Blockchain Events in 2022

Here are some blockchain events in 2022 we think you should know about. If you can’t get to them, you can use them as research. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, after all. 

Key Lessons From Previous Blockchain Events

You should never be too proud not to take inspiration from other people. Likewise, you should never be so foolish as not to learn from past mistakes. 

In other words, learn from the blockchain events that have gone before you. Because the ones that come after you will do the same with your event. 

Where can you make improvements? Are there ideas you can build on? Are there things you think weren’t right? 

To give you some examples of this process, we’ve chosen some recent events to show you how to learn from them: 

  • Consensus: Smaller events like hackathons and workshops are the key to successful blockchain conferences. They give a greater depth of experience and allow for more intimate and hands-on engagement. 
  • Fête DAO: After-work events aren’t just an excuse to have fun. They’re great for branding, disseminating key messages, and priceless environments to meet clients and talent.
  • EthVC: If you can offer the chance to match investors with start-ups, you’ll get a lot of traction. An idea of theirs we also loved was their 1:1 mentor sessions with community experts that proved to be real golden tickets. This is a unique learning experience for startups that you will struggle to get anywhere else. 
  • Cointribune: Everyone loves free merchandise. It makes attendees happy, and more importantly, it’s good for branding. 

Wrapping up  

So there you have it, a comprehensive guide on hosting blockchain events. You’ve learned a lot. From what topics to focus on to choosing a speaker. We’ve looked at what event types to offer and how to select a venue. 

Then we’ve looked at how to market it and incorporate modern tech. And finally, we’ve shown you highlights in the blockchain calendar to jump on. 

And finally, if you are interested in hosting an event of your own, we’d love to hear from you. Good luck, and we hope to see you at a blockchain conference soon! 

Harry Prince
Harry Prince

Creative Content Manager who sings to his dog.

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