SmartTalk in Des Moines
It may seem early to start thinking about plans for the New Year, but in the world of conferences and speaker events, the New Year is right around the corner. One program I’ve got my eye on is the SmartTalk Connected Conversations season series coming to the Civic Center.
What started as a women’s lecture series has now become a major annual event in different cities across the country. The first Des Moines event was held in 2004. Now that I look at who the speakers were last year – Jane Goodall,Frances Mayes and Arianna Huffington to name a few – I’m kicking myself for having missed it. I guess I was still finding my prairie legs (as opposed to sea legs) at the time, after having just moved to DSM.
This time around, I’m ready. The event organizers at SmartTalk just announced the Des Moines line-up this past week, and it’s certainly an interesting mix of speakers: Joan Lunden, Doris Roberts, Paula Abdul, Andie MacDowell and King Peggy & Eleanor Herman. There is one event each month, starting in January through to May, and the evening includes pre-show socializing and food, plus Q&A at the end of the presentation. Details about the speakers and the date they’re featured can be found here.
Apparently, the Des Moines program has been known to sell-out, so if this looks like something you’d like to do, you may want to mark your calendars for November 21 – the day tickets go on sale. To attend the events, you purchase a subscription for the whole program – five events over five months.
Series ticket prices are $119.00 for a special 10% off discount offered until December 1st only. That breaks down to $23.80 per event, which doesn’t seem too bad a deal at all. It’s also nice to know that a percentage of ticket sales are reinvested in local charities, and the organizers are also donating a portion of sales to support Super Storm Sandy recovery efforts. Tickets can be ordered by visiting the Civic Center, calling 515-246-2300 or going to www.smarttalkwomen.com/tickets.
Have you attended the series in years past? If yes, why not tell us about your experience. In the meantime, I’m looking forward to meeting up with fellow Des Moinesians at the events in the New Year.
Tickets are only sold as a series subscription to all five events in the fall. On occasion, inventory permitting, single events and special packages may become available; check with the ticket office for details.
If a series is not sold out then tickets remaining will be sold as a sweries only at a prorated price for the remaining events.
SmartTalk ConnectedConversations™ is a division of Smart Talk Media, LLC
Smart Talk Media, LLC is a privately owned, multimedia company based in Tampa, Florida.
It is often the speaker whose views we don't agree with, or who we think we won't enjoy, who is the speaker that we often end up enjoying the most! It is often that these speakers change our views and opinions and intellectually stimulate us! While one may not agree with that view of the speaker, the point of the series is to bring to the community distiquished people who are telling their personal stories.
Sometimes speakers challenge our views, opinions and intellectually stimulate our thinking. It's helpful to be wise of other thought processes and opinions. You are not expected to agree or accept the views just because he or she is famous. If you do not agree often during the Q&A it's a good time to ask the speaker questions, challenge their views or a chance to express your views.
Hopefully we will always have speakers whom you disagree with - otherwise our series would be boring! There is tremendous value in having diverse opinions! So though you may not agree with them - they will at least give you and your girlfriends something to talk about!
This is what makes our country and our series so great - diverse opinions!
By contract, we are prohibited from distributing the program in any form. Some speakers allowed their talks to be recorded for archival purposes only.
When dealing with such high-profile people there is a small chance that a postponement or substitution of a speaker will occur. This has happened a few times in the past. When you purchase tickets to the series you must assume this very small risk. Our brochures and forms state that speakers are subject to substitutions and or rescheduling. We make every attempt to reschedule the same speaker at a later time or bring in a comparable speaker ont he same date.
Audio/Video recording as well as the taking of still photos by audience members is strictly prohibited. At this time we are not able to provide audiotape, videotape or transcript of the events and any recording we make is for archival purposes only.
Email us and let us know why SmartTalk needs to come to your city. You might even be able to become one of our ambassadors and receive special benefits that ordinary subscribers don't receive.
We encourage businesses, corporations, media, charities, schools, and various others to connect with us about sponsorship - it provides you direct access to a focus group of 1,400 to 2,700 of the most sought after demographic in the country.
Please contact us at email@example.com. We will set up a phone meeting with your company to discuss your sponsorship needs. The next step would be to customize a sponsorship package specifically for your company.
We also encourage all our prospective sponsors to attend one of our shows to get a better feel of the experience.
We have also had companies who for a myriad of reasons choose to buy large blocks of tickets, rather then do a formal sponsorship. That’s great, too!
We’re here to provide opportunities, experiences and inspiration on all levels.
A team of SmartTalk staff along with outside opinions from sponsors and partners brainstorm about the best women (and men) to bring to the series based on several catagories like authors, celebrities, political figures, important women of our time, etc. After months of planning and picking various women the process of finding out if they can come on the dates the venues have given us begins. Once we have aligned a speaker with a date we secure them for the next season by signing contracts. This process often takes a lot of time and thought because we want to bring you a balance of different topics and different lives.
The date tickets are sent varies by city and season, the ticket office will usually confirm a send date at time of purchase. If you are concerned please contact the ticket office.
The events last approximately 1.5 hours.
Format: 45 – 55 minute talk directly followed by a 30 minute moderated question and answer period. Bring a pen, questions cards will be provided in the evening program. No intermission.
Men are indeed welcome and some do attend and enjoy the series but they are definitely outnumbered!
On sale dates vary by city and season, however renewal information and descriptions of the speakers are mailed at the end of the season to all current subscribers. Current subscribers are given three weeks to respond before tickets are sold to the wait list and public consumers.
You may email us your name, address and a daytime phone number, and we will be happy to add you to our waiting list.
Seats can only be purchased through the ticket office as a series subscription to all five events and are renewable from year to year. Renewing patron’s are given a protected period to purchase before public sale. On occasion, inventory permitting, single events and special packages may become available; check with your ticket office for details.
As a Renewing Subscriber, your loyalty is rewarded in the following ways:
We are frequently asked why tickets are sold only as a series and why individual lecture tickets are not always available. There are several reasons.
First and foremost, selling it as a series allows us to advertise the Speaker series at one time and reduces the overall cost of the series. If we had to advertise and market each speaker lecture (five times for each city) the cost for the series and the ticket prices would substancially be higher (more than double).
Second, speaker fees, security and travel have increased tremendously since we first started in 1991. By selling as a series we can afford to bring world class women to our series.
In addition, if tickets for individual lectures were sold, then it no longer would be a "series". By attending a full series you do not end up chosing your favorites only and missing the ones you don't know or agree with. The vast majority of our patrons have discovered that they get more out fof the series if they attend every lecture. They often find that the one they thought they wouldn't like becomes their favorites - don't believe us -read the testimonies on our website!
No - the series is a unique opportunity to share something inspirational with high school and college age students. Often, depending on the speaker, younger children may enjoy hearing her story as well! It provides a wonderful opporutnity for family dialogue on important issues such as politicts, current events, books, authors and inspiring women!
The series is so popular because it is a "real" live in person experience. Unlike television it's an interactive experience! It's a chance to hear from famous and empowering women such as Margaret Thatcher, Diane Keaton, Goldie Hawn, and more! They tell their personal "behind the scene" stories and let you into their lives. The speakers have a chance to elaborate at length about their lives opposed to "TV sound bites. When you hear and see them speak and have a chance to ask them questions directly, you can assess and develop your own opinion of the speaker as well as take away a great message that you can use in your life!
It's also a wonderful way to learn about a variety of subjects: history, international affairs, politics, current events, etc. Just think how many people in the world actually have an opportunity to hear, see and even meet these famous people in person! Often friends and small groups gather after the program to discuss the speaker and their topics - so it offers a chance to spend time with friends and family!
SmartTalk has been bringing women together to experience the power of the spoken word since 1991. Through a subscription of the series, you are exposed to the thoughts and insights of some of the most empowering women of our time! Our speakers share with the audience their unique and PERSONAL experiences and perspectives on a wide range of topics - politics, history, science, authors, busines and even arts and entertainment!
The series consist of 5 evenings begining in January and concluding in May.