The ultimate guide to X4 Summit: Your guide to an unforgettable experience
It’s back! The greatest gathering of Experience Management professionals on the planet returns for 2020 - bigger, better and more memorable than ever. As you start planning your trip, here’s our guide to getting the most out of your X4 2020 experience.
Where and when?
First things first, let’s make sure you have the basics right:
When? March 10-13
Where? Salt Lake City
The event will take place across a few locations in downtown Salt Lake City - the Salt Palace Convention Center, Vivint Smarthome Arena, and X4 Hotel Ballrooms.
Travel and accommodation at X4 2020
Traveling to Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City is well served by domestic flights and serves as the major western hub for Delta Airlines. Plenty of international hubs fly direct to Salt Lake City including Tokyo, Amsterdam, Paris and many more.
Once you land, getting to downtown Salt Lake City is easy - a taxi takes around 15 minutes, or you can take the light rail which takes around 20 minutes.
Choosing the perfect X4 hotel
Don’t have the email? Check out our recommended X4 2020 hotels
Here are a few things to look out for when choosing your hotel:
- Free WiFi - you won’t want to miss notifications from the X4 app, like updates to the schedule or that connection request from that really interesting person you met at Fight Night and totally forgot to exchange LinkedIn details with. Oh, and you might want to check your email to keep in touch with people back at the office, or Facetime your family back at home.
- Breakfast - nobody wants to get hangry midway through mainstage! We’ll have snacks and coffee in the morning, but remember, the content on mainstage runs from first thing in the morning until lunchtime. So stock up on the calories to make sure you don’t miss a thing.
- Airport shuttles - many hotels in Salt Lake City run free shuttle services to the airport. It’s one less taxi receipt you’ll need to expense when you get back.
Things you don’t need in your hotel:
- Dinner - you’ll get an evening meal every single day of X4. We’ve revamped our menu for 2020 and trust us, you won’t want to eat anywhere else.
- Spa - who has time for a massage anyway?! That’s 30 minutes where you could be getting more great X4 content.
- Bar - you won’t have time to hit the hotel bar either — well at least not until after the X4 parties and concerts. We’ll have drinks served at the evening events throughout X4.
Getting around at X4
When we say X4 is BIG, we’re not kidding. The event takes place at The Salt Palace, The Vivint Smarthome Arena, and ballrooms in nearby hotels — really, there’s that much to fit in.
The good news is it’s all within walking distance.
And if you have a fitness tracker, keep an eye on your step count — this might be the week you choose to challenge your more competitive friends!
Choosing the perfect sessions
You’ll have your choice of over 100 sessions at X4 2020, from keynotes by legends of music, entertainment and sports to the inside story of breakthrough moments from some of the world’s most successful brands.
We’ll be announcing more additions to our line-up all the way up to the opening day, so make sure you keep track of the latest agenda here.
The agenda is all built around you, with dedicated tracks for every aspect of experience management, from HR and brand management to customer experience and product development.
On the day, you’ll find plenty of help in the X4 app, including:
- recommended sessions
- venue maps
- build your own agenda
- notifications about agenda updates
Your guide to the perfect X4 outfit
Business casual is what we recommend, but let’s face it, choosing the right outfit for a day at X4 is an art in itself.
First, think about layers. Salt Lake City is cold in the winter, so you’ll want something warm on when you’re heading to the Salt Palace or going between venues for different sessions. But when you’re inside, it can get pretty warm, so make sure you have a thin layer on underneath.
Next, think multi-purpose. It’s an action-packed day that goes all the way through into the night with parties and concerts. So your outfit will need to double-up as evening wear.
And when it comes to footwear, it’s all about comfort. You’ll be clocking up the steps all day and on your feet for the concert and parties — and nothing cramps your style at Fight Night or the X4 concert quite like blisters.
How to network like a pro at X4 2020
One of the big draws of X4 is having tens of thousands of like-minded people all in one place. No more explaining what experience management is to the people you meet — these people just get it.
So take the opportunity to meet with, talk to, learn from and connect with them. Here’s a few tips on how to work the room like a pro:
- Don’t just hang out with your colleagues — so your HR director, head of research and svp of customer service all made the trip over… let’s face it, you know them already, and there will be plenty of opportunities to get to know each other better later. Try to make a conscious effort to break out from your own work group and you’ll find other attendees are much more likely to join the conversation when they’re connecting 1:1 rather than trying to infiltrate a group.
- Plan your networking — this isn’t a college party, you need to plan out who you’re looking to meet. If you want to connect with a speaker, don’t join the crowd of people talking to them straight after their speech, try to set up time afterwards when it’s a little quieter. As for other attendees, search through the app as see which sessions the people you want to meet will be at, or check out the feed for discussions you want to join.
- Assemble a diverse squad - we tend to gravitate to people just like us, but try looking outside your own role and connect with people in other disciplines. If you’re in HR, you might learn a lot from a CX professional, market researcher or academic and vice versa. Spreading your network far and wide will introduce you to plenty of lateral thinking and may spark some interesting new approaches you can try from other disciplines.
- Just ask! - rather than replying on striking up a conversation at the party or in the drinks break, put a call out on the X4 app for people to connect with. There’s a discussion feed there that’s the perfect pace to say ‘Looking to connect with other [add job titles here] - anyone fancy grabbing a drink at the reception tonight?’ - you’ll be surprised just how many people will take up the offer.
- Hit up the receptions - Fight Night and the concert aren’t the only places to meet people. There are plenty of breakfasts and drinks receptions for specific industries and job roles you can get to where there will be plenty of people to connect with.
Where to get help on the day
Everything you’ll need will be in the X4 app. We’ll send you a link to download it a few weeks before the event kicks off. It has everything from the latest agenda, maps of the venue, and plenty of networking features so you can keep in touch with others at the event.
If you can’t find what you need, don’t worry, we’ll also have info desks dotted around the venues and our team are on hand to help you get the most out of your experience.
So whether you just can’t find the bathroom, want to know what time the concert starts or need to find a room, just come and see us - we’ll point you in the right direction.
Keeping up with colleagues back at the office
Yep, we get it — your colleagues who couldn’t make it aren’t exactly going to leave you alone just because you’re learning from A-List keynote speakers, living it up with world-class entertainment and networking 14,000 other XM pioneers.
So here’s an out of office message that should help you keep on top of your inbox while you’re at X4:
Thanks for your message. Please expect a delay in my response — I’m currently at X4, the world’s largest gathering of Experience Management leaders.
Right now, I’m in Salt Lake City, probably hearing from some of the biggest names in politics, entertainment and sport, learning from the world’s best known brands, or networking with XM leaders from around the world.
Yep, it’s pretty full on!
I’ll respond to your email as soon as I’m back in the office next week. If you need to find me, I’ll be the one showing everyone pictures from the event, talking endlessly about how close I was to the band, or urging everyone around me to come along next year.
In the meantime, you can get your fix of FOMO here — twitter.com/x4summit
That’s the 2 days of X4 covered. But what about a trip report when you get back? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered — by Monday morning you’ll have a breakdown of all the sessions you attended, key learnings and information to find out more. We’ll also be opening up all the content a couple of weeks later so you can share that awesome breakout you went to, or watch one you didn’t manage to squeeze in.
Really need to get some work done? There will be plenty of charging stations, work areas and even breakout rooms so you can keep on top of everything even if you do need to do it during the mainstage keynotes (not that we’d recommend it, but that’s life sometimes!)
Lasting the distance — keeping your energy up throughout the day
They’re long, action-packed days at X4, so you’ll need to keep your energy up to go all the way from morning keynotes to the end of the night.
Here’s some tips to keep you refueled and full of energy from start to finish:
- Hydration, hydration, hydration – there will be plenty of water and drinks available throughout the day, but why not go green and bring a reusable
- Visit the snack stations regularly - it’s a good idea to incorporate them into your route as you go from one session to the next.
- Keep some snacks in your bag - after all, you might not want to duck out of a session because you’re hungry. A bag of nuts or a protein bar are pretty good options for staving off hunger and keeping you going until the next break.
We’ve all been there — you spend 3 days scribbling notes at a conference only to find the scrawl is illegible when you get back to the office to share what you’ve learned.
Well squint no more, there are plenty of ways to make note taking way more efficient:
- Smart notebooks - these handy notepads upload your notes to the cloud or send them to your email! You simply write your notes, snap them, and wipe the pages clean and hey presto, your notes are emailed to you. Both Moleskine and Rocketbook are good smart notebooks to try.
- Use your phone - save yourself from rsi and ditch the notepad entirely and just snap away with your phone. You’ll be able to capture slides on your phone and go back to them later to remember what speakers said.
- Do nothing - by far the easiest option. Focus on enjoying the experience - we’ll email you key takeaways from your sessions as well as all the slides and videos from the event when you get back to the office.
Staying a few days? Here’s some of the best Salt Lake City attractions
X4 might be the best thing happening in Salt Lake City in March, but when the doors close on the event, you might want to stay around for a day or two to explore the state capital. If you do, here’s some of our favorite things to do while you’re in town:
- Bonneville Salt Flats - Take stunning photos on this 30,000 acre salt pan. Its reflective surface makes it seem as if you’re walking on water
- Grandeur Peak - Take in the stunning views at 8,299 feet over Salt Lake Valley and the surrounding peaks
- Temple Square - These 35-acre grounds are home to Salt Lake Temple, Tabernacle, the Assembly Hall and Nauvoo Bell.
- The Utah Olympic Park - Go bobsledding, luge, ski jumping, extreme tubing, ropes courses, rock climbing and ziplining. There’s even theCornet Bobsled, where you can experience 3 Gs of gravity as you race down a track at 70mph.
- Visit us! Our HQ is just 40 mins away and we’re holding an Open House on March 14. Chat to your Qualtrics rep to find out more and book your place.
Read our complete guide on things to do in Salt Lake City
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