Convention vs Conference

Convention vs Conference: What’s the Difference?

Conventions & conferences are big events in the business world. Learn the differences between conventions vs conferences and how to plan your own big event.
Hubilo
,
March 31, 2023

Conferences and conventions are two types of events that companies put together. They’re both great opportunities for people to come together and learn valuable information while networking with others in their field. Actually, according to data from Zippia, 97% of media marketers believe in-person events are crucial. While conferences and conventions are both classic events, they present some differences. We’ll go over what makes these events so successful and unique compared to one another. 

What is a convention? 

A convention is an event where a group of people interested in one topic gather at a specific place and time to discuss a said topic or make a decision. Discussion among attendees about their work, the convention topic, and other ideas is highly encouraged as it can bring people from all sorts of backgrounds together. Typically, conventions are held every few years as opposed to once a month or twice a year by a company or organization, and usually last more than one day. In the United States, there are at least 255 convention centers, with 22 in California alone, according to Zippia.Some conventions are held for political purposes to make decisions for a specific party or can be held for national purposes. 

A lot of times, to encourage interaction between attendees, there will be certain programs or activities to get people talking and sharing thoughts and ideas. 

Convention event
A convention event with people discussing together

What is a conference?

A conference is an event that resembles more of a meeting; attendees gather to hear typically one speaker talk about a certain topic. Conferences usually last a few days and limit the amount of audience interaction and discussion. There are many different types of conferences that can be held, such as educational conferences, news conferences, and business conferences. This kind of event is more formal compared to a convention, with speakers chosen before the event and an event agenda typically set in place. A conference is typically held as an educational event, where a lesson is taught or discussed by experts in a specific field. 

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What are the differences between conventions & conferences?

While conventions and conferences hold similarities, they also hold a number of differences. We’ll outline some of the main differences: 

1. Definition

A conference is a meeting usually meant for discussing certain problems and/or consultation. 

A convention is an event where attendees gather at a specific location on a specific date and time to discuss a popular issue or make a decision. 

2. Formality level 

A convention is less formal and less serious than a conference.

A conference is more formal and serious than a convention.

3. Sharing of ideas 

At a convention, the attendees are expected to share their thoughts and ideas with everyone.

At a conference, the sharing of ideas primarily comes from the speakers of the conference. 

A conference event
A conference event with people hearing from the speaker

4. Knowledge 

A convention is a great place to network, discuss ideas and learn from others involved with the topic. In a report from Bizzabo, 93% of respondents stated that in-perfon events provide attendees with valuable opportunites to form in-person connections.

A conference is an event to learn from experts in a certain field. A conference leans more towards an educational event with the knowledge shared by leaders and experts. 

Convention vs. Conference: A comparison chart  

Convention Conference
Definition An event where attendees gather at a specific location on a specific date and time to discuss a popular issue or make a decision. A conference is usually meant for discussing certain problems and/or consultation.
Formality Less formal and less serious than a conference. More formal and serious than a convention.
Idea Sharing The attendees are expected to share their thoughts and ideas amongst everyone. The sharing of ideas primarily comes from the speakers of the conference.
Knowledge A great place to network, discuss ideas and learn from others involved with the topic. An event to learn from experts in a certain field.

Plan your next big event with Hubilo 

No matter which type of event you choose to host, both conferences and conventions are great options. With both events, attendees can gain new knowledge and perspectives about certain topics either from industry experts or peers in the field. Holding an event such as these ones is not easy - which is why you should consider working with an event-hosting platform that makes the process less difficult. Elevate your next convention and conference with engagement and gamification features for attendees. Quality platforms like Hubilo can help improve the decision-making process for future events, too - with advanced analytics, you can review real data right from event attendees.

Choose Hubilo for your next event and request a demo today to know more about the other feature.

Author
Hubilo

Hubilo is the webinar platform built for marketers that helps you 2X your pipeline. Founded in 2015, Hubilo's powerful engagement features, dedicated client experience team, and custom branding tools have helped create over 12K virtual events & webinars, creating hundreds of millions of minutes of high-engagement experiences and counting. Headquartered in Bengaluru and San Francisco, Hubilo's 200+ employees are dedicated to enabling webinars & virtual events that convert.

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