Jeroen Soeterbroek

The city of The Hague & #SMWNL appear to be a good combination!


Social Media Week

If you work in the digital industry, you may be familiar with this experience: you pay €489 to attend a hip tech congress in the capital city. You line up for hours for your ticket. On the day itself you are running from hall to hall and sometimes have to wait half an hour for a cup of coffee. At the end of the week, you come to the conclusion that even though it was fun, you did not get out of it what you had expected. We think that this could be different.

In late 2017, my business partner Maarten Reijgersberg received the alderman from The Hague in Chicago. There, they and a delegation visited Social Media Week (SMW) Chicago.

Social Media Week is a worldwide event that is held in nearly all of the world’s major cities, such as London and New York, and features a three-day programme. We are proud to have brought this concept to the Netherlands. At the end of the trip, we received the full support of the municipality of The Hague to organise this excellent event in their city.

The Hague is the ideal city to host this event, in my opinion. The Hague is known for good reason as the conference city of the Netherlands and the city is home to more than 150 NGOs and the offices and/or headquarters of world players such as Shell, Amazon, Huawei and T-Mobile. Last but not least, the city is the cradle of news provision focusing on The Hague politics.

Value for money: in an intimate setting where you can almost touch the speakers. That is exactly what we wanted for this event. A maximum of 500 enthusiasts at a premium location, with good speakers from the Netherlands and abroad, time for a conversation and cup of coffee and, moreover, partners that are specialists in their respective fields.

The price was deliberately kept on the low side as we wanted this event to be accessible to everyone whose eyes sparkle when talking or thinking about our field. How cool is it for the CEO an international brand to be seated next to a 21-year-old influencer?

I am therefore proud that, as one of the main sponsors, RauwCC, ConnextLAB and Connect Holland invited their business associates to this event. For three days, we listened to fantastic speakers, facilitated a live stream with London (convenient for those with a fear of flying) and concluded the event with a blast of an evening programme. After all, what would an event like this be without a great party?

I would like to thank the municipality of The Hague, all sponsors and partners and, of course, our team who made this possible! Would you like to attend (again) next year? Save the date for 13 - 15 November 2019.

P.S. Who knows, we may be surprised by a visit from Mark Rutte. Apparently, he has an unfulfilled opening, according to Algemeen Dagblad.

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