Not sure where to post..., MSPA vs IMSC conferences

I have a shopping pal. We have made a tentative reservation for the hotel for next June in Dallas. I need to be video certified. She needs maybe 2nd level certification.

What would you do. We want to go to one of the conferences., My finances are the biggest issue. I need to save.

Any ideas of who to pick? Both offer great information and certifications. I love belonging to both because of the diversity and the broader ways to contact MSC;s.

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning; the devil shudders...And yells OH #%*+! SHE'S AWAKE!

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The May conference in Atlanta for IMSC, including video is $79 for 3 days. Depending on your travel costs that could be more economical for you. Or not. I do not know the price of the MSPA conference, but I think that in the past, video training has been an additional charge beyond the main conference.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
Atlanta is chock full of reasonably priced hotels.

Talking tough is easy when it's other people's evil and you're judging what they do and don't believe.
MA, don't you live in Texas? If so, Dallas makes sense. Atlanta is prob 10 hours from Houston, I was thinking you are further SW of there so even longer of a drive. I liked the IMSC conference I went to and don't know anything about the Dallas one, guessing it's MSPA? If you wanted to do the IMSC conference you could try flying with SQMs discounted rate but I don't think they would need 2 :people evaluating the same flight so your companion would need to travel at a different time. But then there is getting to and from hotel, food, etc.
If video is one of the main components for you then check with the companies you work for or want to work for before taking the mspa video training. I have seen shoppers post on facebook their mspa video training did not suffice for the video companies that do the most of video shops and they had to pay to be retrained by video shopping pros or the imsc in order to do work for them. They did not learn what they needed to know even though they spent their money. The other thing to look as is what you get for the price for each conference like the poster above said, everything appears inclusive at the imsc conference in 2018 and if you have to pay separately for a lot of other classes or certifications with the mspa then distance is not as relevant. I did not get to go to the imsc one in Vegas due to family issues but I did see the program and there were about 20 sessions included. I hope to go to Atlanta.
At the LV conference this year, video training was an extra cost. In Atlanta is will be a full day, included in the $79 total cost of the 3 day conference. The hotel will be a bit more than in LV, but it was all arranged by the folks at ACL. As I recall, the MSPA and Video Pros tend to have more expensive hotels as their conference sites. You may want to check about this. I think that if you google IMSC 2018 conference, that is where the link for the hotel will go, if it is not already there.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
This is a good question. I have attended the IMSC conferences before and since the MSPA conference is here in Dallas this year, I plan to attend it. That way I will be able to compare the two in the same year. Will keep you posted.

I'd go on a diet, but that would be an insult to the fine people who make Cheesecake!
I will likely be at both too! My best friends live just down the street.

Talking tough is easy when it's other people's evil and you're judging what they do and don't believe.
I thought I was your best friend.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
Oh. I meant my second best friends!

Talking tough is easy when it's other people's evil and you're judging what they do and don't believe.
I’m glad to se this thread as I have never been to either conference and I’m curious about both pros and cons...I am seriously considering going to one for 2018 as I’ve only been shopping for 1 1/2 years and still have much to learn. For those that have been to these can you pick what sessions you want to attend? Is there more than one session going on at a time?
Both registrations are open now. The imsc in Atlanta is 79.00 and the mspa one is 175.00. From what I remember from the last conferences advertised, the imsc allows their members to also bring their significant other at no extra cost and the mspa charges for all sessions that occur on the second day of their conference, but they do include some meals. I can buy my own meals or get paid to eat instead of paying 100.00 plus extra in fees.
@bgriffin wrote:

Atlanta is chock full of reasonably priced hotels.

Hell, in Atlanta you can buy a 3 bedroom home for roughly the same as a week in any hotel.
SO cheap.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
@bgriffin wrote:

Oh. I meant my second best friends!

Pfft. Whatever.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
Lissy,
At the IMSC conferences there are a few sessions for everyone (in the big conference room.) At other times there will be 2-3 smaller workshop or "breakout" sessions going on in smaller rooms, allowing the shopper to select what most interests them. This also allows for more interaction between member and the speakers, since it is easier to take questions during the session. Atlanta will be a special conference because instead of 2 days of varied sessions being included, those two days PLUS a full day of video camera/shop training will be included. I think (but am not certain) that the video day is all video, with no other sessions going on, but I could be wrong. Either way, at $79 that's a TON of sessions for everyone. For shoppers wanting to ramp up their MS careers there is usually a session on learning to route shop. And, I know that in Atlanta I will be leading a workshop on the first step toward route shopping: learning to develop a profitable 1 day route, before moving up to multiple days "on the road.

Sessions that often occur at IMSC conferences (but are not guaranteed to happen at every conference) include: understanding IRS tax rules for independent contractors; a panel of editors, MSC owners, and schedulers who will answer lots of audience questions about shopper peeves or quandaries; something on hotel and/or fine dining shops; personal safety while shopping whether near home or on a route; changing your appearance when shopping; handy-dandy tech and low tech items to have in your "shopper's kit"; new technology solutions for common MS problems. Usually, more than half of the session are presented by experienced shoppers who can speak to issues that appear ACROSS MSCs, not just what one or two different MSCs (or clients) want from their shoppers.

IMSC planners are just now lining up workshop speakers/leaders for Atlanta, so if there is a topic that is one you want to see on the program, be sure to speak up. You can go to info@imsc.com or I will be glad to pass along ideas to the planners to consider. I am NOT one of the general planners for IMSC conferences, btw.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
Oh Wow!.. So much information to digest.

I don't mind going to Atlanta, even if I have to drive. My oldest friend lives around Atlanta and family lives around Savannah.

I have hotel reservations for Dallas. I'm planning to attend with a shopping friend and we are wondering which would benefit us the most. So far the responses are saying Atlanta. We will not mind changing up our plans. She is certified, I'm not. She wants to learn about Talon and I do as well.

My biggest cost will be the kennel cost for the dog/airfare/hotel.

Thanks to everyone who has responded. You all gave great information.

MaryAnn

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning; the devil shudders...And yells OH #%*+! SHE'S AWAKE!
Is MSPA promising a Talon training session? From what I have heard, the new owner is dealing only with IMSC.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
@walesmaven wrote:

Is MSPA promising a Talon training session? From what I have heard, the new owner is dealing only with IMSC.

I don't know what is being promised. I know I need certification, plus Talon.

I'll talk with my pal. She definitely wants Talon.

Thanks for your input.

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning; the devil shudders...And yells OH #%*+! SHE'S AWAKE!
Regular video training will be at IMSC. I expect the Talon folks will be there, as they always are. It looks like the rebuild of the Talon platform, due out by the end of November, will be so much easier to work with that minimal training will be needed. Practiice, yes; significant training , just some. Many of us were using much of the Talon app in 5 minutes. And, there was no significant advantage for those of us with a lot of video experience.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
I believe that it has been extra in the past. Has anyone here taken video training through MSPA shopperfest?

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
Thank you to all of the members that helped me make a decision about the two different conferences.

I decided to go with the May conference in Atlanta.

Thank you to every last person that has posted on this thread. Your information and insight has been wonderful.

MaryAnn

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning; the devil shudders...And yells OH #%*+! SHE'S AWAKE!
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