Events organization usually starts with selection of the proper format for it. We often can't tell the difference between a forum and a colloquium, or how organization of conferences differs from organization of workshops. However, when publishing information about an event on the Internet or in the media, it is necessary to define the format correctly, for this is the key basis for correct planning.
To begin with, there are a number of varieties of formats, including congress, conference, colloquium, symposium, seminar and workshop. These are traditional formats, but recently a forum or business forum gained popularity, i.e. an event that brings together most of the industry to summarize the results for a certain period, often accompanied by demonstrations and an exhibition.
Congress is, in fact, a large conference, and the organization of events of this format involves advance notice up to one-year, large number of participants and speakers, often coming from other countries. Typically, a congress is held once a year and serves to summarize the results of certain projects or work in a particular area; opinion leaders in a particular field attend it.
Organization of conferences is a wider domain, conferences can be held both on a once-only and on a regular basis, they can be held at various scales, in different formats, involving participants of various profiles. Symposium and a colloquium are varieties of a conference. A symposium is usually devoted to a specific topic, often scientific, and a colloquium, in addition, normally includes a speech by a scientist, who claims to conduct a separate, independent study.
Organization of small-scale events usually comes down to a seminar or workshop, which usually has a small number of participants, rarely more than 50, and one or two speakers or instructors. This is the least expensive option, often used for training or discussion of some issues. In the latter case, this is not much different from a meeting.
In general, of course, we can say that the correct name of the format is not the main factor for success, it is important to choose the right speakers and talks, draw up a program, provide meals etc. However, remembering the proverb "as you name the ship, it will sail", we advise to pay due attention to the correct definition of the format.