15 Tips for an Effective Call for Papers (CFP): Crafting a Winning CFP Submission
- Hands-on lab
- Conference workshop
Submitting a proposal to speak at a conference is an exciting opportunity to share your insights and expertise.
However, standing out amidst numerous submissions demands a thoughtful approach.
At Aardling we use our passion for software to organise software conferences. We organise Domain-Driven Design Europe in Amsterdam, and Newcrafts in Paris.
Here are some key tips to consider when crafting your Call for Papers (CFP).
1. Relevance Matters
Before submitting, ensure your content aligns with the conference's theme and objectives. Quality surpasses quantity - focus on crafting a well-aligned proposal rather than submitting multiple unrelated topics.
2. Assist the Organisers
Provide supplementary materials like videos or comments showcasing why your talk fits the conference. Help the reviewers understand the relevance and value of your submission.
3. Clarity is Key
Craft a title that encapsulates your talk's essence. Be explicit and informative, enabling attendees to grasp the topic swiftly.
4. Keep it Concise
Opt for brevity in your title, ensuring it remains impactful, especially when viewed on mobile or in printed programs.
5. Mind Your Language
Avoid language that might alienate or discourage potential attendees. Aim for inclusive and accessible language in your titles.
6. Be Explicit
Avoid being cryptic in your abstract. Clearly outline what your talk entails and what attendees can expect to learn or gain.
7. Outline Expected Outcomes
Offer a glimpse into the key takeaways and learning points attendees will derive from your presentation.
8. Striking a Balance
Craft an abstract that is neither too brief nor overly detailed. Strike the right balance to capture attention while conveying essential information.
9. Level of Expertise
Clearly communicate the expected knowledge level required for participants to benefit optimally from your session.
10. Define Your Audience
Specify who will benefit most from your talk, ensuring it resonates with the right attendees.
11. Hands-On Approach
Consider whether your content can incorporate hands-on elements, offering attendees a more immersive learning experience.
12. Live Demonstrations
Enhance retention by showcasing live demonstrations instead of relying solely on screenshots or slides. Engage the audience actively with live coding or interactive sessions.
13. Preparation is Key
Practice your presentation or hands-on session beforehand. Utilise meetups or smaller events as opportunities to refine your content through practice and feedback.
Crafting Your Speaker Bio
14. Beyond Catchphrases
Focus on substance over style in your bio. Highlight why you're the right person to deliver this talk, emphasising relevant experience and expertise.
15. Demonstrating Expertise
Your bio should illustrate why you're uniquely qualified to speak on the proposed topic.