We all want our audiences to feel special when they come to our events. That's why are always innovating and trying new stage design ideas, new tools, and new tech. This week, we have a few tips for making your trade show booth stand out and managing your social media better. You'll also learn how to work better by opting out of meetings and opting into the right workspace. We also have a special treat: learn the origin story of Endless Events straight from our Chief Event Einstein himself. From Zero to Endless: Will Curran's Story Founding a business in high school is by no means an easy feat. But that is exactly what our very own Will Curran did with Endless Events!\u00a0\u00a0In this feature, Will shares how he went from a part-time golf-course worker to the owner of one of the leading AV companies in the country. He talks about the challenges of continually upping his game to conquer the competition. Will also shares how his initial struggles with the company gave him a different perspective on the notion of success and happiness in the events industry. Home vs Office, from an #EventProfs' Perspective Event pros are experts at working in different environments, making us considerably more adaptable than the common office worker. However, where we work still heavily influences our performance. Some of us are more productive in a coworking space, while others find more focus working in a coffee shop. Some love the flexibility of the home but find the lack of professionalism and accountability dangerous. Ultimately, choosing where to work means finding the environment that fits your working style the best. 12 Winning Examples of Stage Design The stage is the centerpiece of most events. These slides give us an overview of how to make the stage a perfect focal point for any occasion. Are you willing to go ultra high-tech? MTV's 2017 Video Music Awards would be the perfect inspiration. It merged technology with new ways to connect the performers to the audience. If you like to keep it simpler, you could take a look at last year's In Good Company Conference. The stage featured a humble rug and sofa on a platform. Get more stage design inspiration by diving into the article up top. 2018 in Events: Predictions from Experts While event tech (AI, data security, VR, and AR) is maturing and would undoubtedly be a centerpiece of many conferences this year, trendsetters are looking several steps beyond at ideas concerning event design and the personalization of the attendee's journey. Partnership event marketing or co-marketing of events is also an idea that's getting more popular. Just remember that while tricks and hacks might work, if everyone is doing it, you need to do it better to stand out. Personalization Reigns Supreme in 2018 With events getting bigger and grander, it's easy for attendees to feel like they're just another drop in the audience bucket when it comes to importance. Nonetheless, the success of your event still hinges upon how well it can connect to its attendees despite its size. This is the primary reason why attendee experience takes the lead in what event professionals should focus on this coming year. Of course, this means putting yourself in the shoes of your participants, trying to understand what they want to gain out of attending your event, as well as how they travel on their event journey. Music Festivals Hit the Sweet Spot Music festivals are spreading like wildfire across the nation, largely influenced by the nearly-free access to music the world is enjoying. Superfly, one of the biggest players in this industry, is banking on the cross between the musical and social experience that these festivals offer. This interview with Superfly co-founder Rick Farman dissects the anatomy of a music festival from its themes to the evolution of its venues, including the reaction of festival sponsors to the growth and changes within the events. Virtual Meetings Need to Take It up a Notch Despite unprecedented progress in the field of VR and AR, the common notion of "virtual meetings" is still a live stream via Hangouts or Skype. However, according to experts, holding a virtual meeting isn't that easy. A successful virtual event needs to have the same brand experience as a real-life event. There should be interactivity between the presenter and the virtual attendee. And while going high-tech is nice, remember to always reinforce the purpose of the meeting so the attendees have something to focus on instead of any fancy (or buggy) tech. Trade Show Tips for the New Year Going on a trade show this 2018? You'd better come prepared. Any event planner knows that winning the attendees' attention needs to start way before the booth is set up, beginning with the first event tweet or post sent on social media. From hyping up your presence to promising freebies and special offers, there are many ways to get people to visit you at the show. And then there's the matter of meeting (and beating) expectations by making sure your booth stands out as something that is a must-see in the event! Mission Control For Your Social Media Social media is a bit like exploring outer space. Without specialized tech, you'll find it a challenge trying to find your way through its deepest reaches. You need different tools not only to help you in marketing but also to make sure you make the most impact even as you gather insights. Thankfully, there are tools that give you the help you need like Buffer, Edgar, Hootsuite, Rafflecopter, and others. This post explores the potential of these tools as well as how you can use them to give a rocket boost to your social media management strategy. Get Out of That Time-Wasting Meeting! It's one thing to filter out which meetings are worth your time. It's another thing to skip the ones that aren't. One good strategy is to make it hard for others to invite you to a meeting by making sure your calendar is hidden, and by "vetting" the meeting. Vetting gives additional work to the person inviting you by defining items such as the topic, attendees, location, agenda, and more. You could also ask the inviter if it's possible to just get your opinion via phone or email. If you have ever wanted to know how to skip time-wasting meetings, this article is for you. Yeah, we've all been there. Stuck in an "important" meeting that we'd rather not be in. What's your personal recommendation for getting out of time-wasting meetings?