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Attendee guide & pro tips: Welcome to GSMCON2023!

Mar 08, 2023

GSMCON2023 is happening May 2-4, 2023 both online and in person in Reno-Tahoe, Nevada. Register now before the regular registration discount ends on Friday, March 17, 2023!

Welcome, attendees and participants, to the 2023 Government Social Media Conference! We’re just under 60 days until the start of GSMCON, and we’re so excited you’re joining all of us at Team GSM either in-person in Reno-Tahoe, NV or virtually for this experience.

The hardest part is already over — you made the commitment to invest in not only your career, but also yourself. After our 2.5 days together on May 2-4, you’ll walk away — or log off — with the right information to elevate your role, confidently communicate and become the best government social media professional.

Didn’t register yet? Prices increase after regular registration ends at 11:59 p.m. PT Friday, March 17! Get your ticket now to join over 900 participants already registered for GSMCON2023.

Before we meet either online or in Reno for this year’s event, here are some tips & advice to help you have the most successful conference experience:

Network, network, network

Whether you know many of the other attendees, you’ve geeked out over your favorite accounts from afar or you are just starting out in this profession, GSMCON is the best place to find your socialgov support system

Welcome Reception

You’re invited! Meet fellow attendees at the Welcome Reception at the Grand Sierra Resort’s Lex Nightclub on Monday, May 1. Sponsored by CivicPlus, you’ll be treated to music, light snacks and the continuing tradition of one complimentary drink ticket. Sponsors, speakers and network reps usually attend, too, and don’t forget to say “hi” to all of us at Team GSM!

Official conference schedule

During the tentative conference schedule, you’ll meet each other during concurrent breakout sessions and networking breaks. Throughout the program, there will be designated networking breaks where you can head to the Expo Area to meet with vendors, grab some coffee, hang out in the attendee lounge and more. Why meet with vendors? Past attendee and 2023 Local Host Committee member Erin Yeung says while “you may not be the decision maker, you can have convos and take info back to your agency.” 

For lunch, grab a seat for a plated lunch where we’ll have guided networking activities and icebreakers to get to know your fellow peers at your table. New this year, there are no sessions during lunch so you can genuinely connect with your peers over a meal.

Get ready to celebrate each other’s social media wins at the Golden Post Awards! Happening 3-4:30 p.m. PT on Wednesday, May 3, you’ll gather together to hear the winners for Best Facebook Presence, Best Podcast and more categories specific to the government social media profession. 

Restaurant Romp & shuttles to Lake Tahoe

Start off your Tuesday night right by exploring local eateries with fellow attendees during the Restaurant Romp. Right after conference hours, in-person attendees can meet up at various restaurants to network — all while grabbing grub together. Past attendee pro tip: LHC member Katie Charleson says to make sure to sign up for the Restaurant Romp first thing Tuesday morning! Sign-up sheets will be available at the Info Booth.

Want to see some of the surrounding areas? Team GSM is providing a complimentary shuttle Tuesday evening to Lake Tahoe. Details on how to sign up will be available as the event gets closer!

VIP experience

New this year, in-person attendees can also upgrade to an exclusive VIP experience! With only a limited amount of tickets available, these attendees will participate in a special networking event just for VIPs on Wednesday, May 3. You’ll meet in a fun atmosphere, have dinner and get to meet fellow VIPs like the GSM Membership Council, industry experts and more. Plus, you’ll also get access to all pre-conference workshops, All Access sessions and additional perks.

After hours

After sessions end, the rest of the time is yours to explore! Use the official hashtag, #GSMCON2023, to find out where your fellow attendees are going or make plans to explore the city with fellow attendees. If you’re someone who finds coming to conferences challenging as an introvert or ambivert, read your fellow peer’s guide on navigating conferences as an introvert, created for last year’s conference in Dallas, TX.

Virtual attendees only

Can’t attend in person this year? Virtual tickets are available! You’ll attend your own special Virtual Only Welcome Reception on Monday, May 1 where you’ll tune in from Zoom, turn your camera on and get chatting with fellow participants. We’ll also have a special guest host online to help lead an engaging conversation with each other!

Virtual participants get access to our event platform where you can participate in forum conversations and can participate in an optional networking break during official conference hours. 

Attending all the sessions

With a lineup like this, you won’t want to miss a thing! Multiple concurrent breakout sessions happen at the same time, and odds are, you’ll want to go to many of them at once. Don’t add stress by trying to jump to different rooms — instead, focus on your most-wanted sessions and use this workaround already included in your ticket: the on-demand Virtual Pass.

A couple of weeks after the conference ends, we’ll send you access to most session recordings to view on-demand for 90 days. This way, you can view most sessions and any available worksheets and slide decks from the speakers at your convenience.

For sessions like keynotes and other general session panels, you won’t have to worry about missing a thing — each of these sessions have their own dedicated times where everyone will meet at the same place, at the same time.

What’s not available in the Virtual Pass? All add-on, pre-conference workshops and special All Access sessions are not available on-demand — if you upgraded your experience (more on this below!), make sure you don’t miss these sessions.

Personalize your experience

Only for in-person ticket holders, attendees can choose from three different options to make your GSMCON experience exactly what you need to succeed in government social media.

Add-on, pre-conference Workshops

Sharpen your skills by signing up for these add-on, pre-conference workshops. Each workshop is taught by industry experts who will provide you with best practices and practical tips to build your strategy and technique. Every person who completes any workshop will receive a digital certificate of completion!

  • Government Social Media 101 -  Best choice if you’re a new socialgov or want to learn the basics! (Led by the GSM professional association Training Committee)
  • Instagram 201: Beyond Chasing Trends and Posting Photos (Eva Kirschbaum with the Town of Gilbert and Frances La Rue with the City of Anna, Texas)
  • Creating Effective Social Media Reports Your Boss Loves & Understands (Sabrina Merritt, October Social Media)

These 2-hour, add-on, pre-conference workshops on Monday, May 1, 2023, are only held in-person where participants can expect in-depth sessions with small group activities ($100 each). 

All Access Ticket

Everything in the General Admission Ticket, PLUS admission to these three All Access only sessions where you’ll work through these top government social media challenges in fun, interactive ways and actually practice what you learn in small group activities.

  • All Access Live Review: Go From Design Disasters to Social Ready
  • All Access PowerTalk: Creating & Editing Smartphone Video
  • All Access WWYD: Getting Leadership to Subscribe to the Work You Do

VIP Ticket

Get everything above and more with the VIP ticket experience!

  • Access to ALL pre-conference workshops on Monday, May 1
  • Admission to All Access sessions during the conference
  • Exclusive VIP networking activity & meal on Wednesday night
  • Private VIP device charging station access in our expo
  • Bonus swag to commemorate your experience
  • Attendee badge upgrade

Don’t forget to bring… 

Besides bringing your laptop or notebook for note-taking, here are some additional items attendees like to bring: 

  • Your uniform; please feel free to represent your agency during the conference
  • Erin Yeung, past attendee and LHC member, says, “Bring business cards because it’s a huge networking opportunity. You can keep those relationships that you build with at the conference, and you can reach out to a huge network later to ask questions and bounce ideas off of.”
  • Your agency’s challenge coin; many attendees trade with each other every year.
  • Comfortable shoes, casual or business casual clothing (but feel free to take it up a notch for Monday’s Welcome Reception or the Golden Post Awards ceremony!).
  • If you get cold easily, a pro tip from LHC member Lydia Guiterrez is to bring a sweater or a jacket that you can layer.

Start your experience today

Start connecting with your peers now! Getting involved and connecting with your fellow government social media community can be an extremely useful (and fun!) way to solve challenges and celebrate wins together. Here are a few ways you can get helpful advice today before meeting your socialgov support system at GSMCON2023:

 

  • Become part of the free Government Social Media network — only available to full/part-time employees of government or educational institutions. Every other week join a free, text-only Government Social Media Chat with fellow peers!
  • Our professional association is one of the most economical memberships at only $79/year where members get online resources, regional groups, complimentary headshots at GSMCON and so much more. Complete the application form & start viewing the member-only content today!

 

We’re excited for what will be the most spectacular GSMCON yet, and we’re even more excited YOU will be part of it! 

It might feel like a lot to keep track of, but Team GSM is here to answer any questions along the way. Make sure to add [email protected] to your contacts so you receive the latest updates, reminders and GSMCON2023 news. During the conference, we’ll also be in touch daily with highlights, after-hours events and more. We’ll see you online or in Reno!


Best communicate with the public you serve and get connected with fellow socialgovs by registering for the 2023 Government Social Media Conference happening in Reno-Tahoe, Nevada! Join our free network for bi-weekly Government Social Media Chats or professional association for member-only webinars. Sign up for our newsletter to get the latest updates on training, events and more.

We support the largest network of government social media professionals in the U.S. by guiding government agencies through complex social media issues. Government Social Media helps you successfully communicate with the public you serve, protect your agency and keep public trust while finding your support community. 

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