Attending a business conference can be a good way to get new ideas, and potentially take your business to the next level. Regardless of what business conference you decide to attend, there is likely to be some good information that you can take advantage of. If you plan on going to a business conference in the near future, there are a few tips to keep in mind to maximize your chances of getting the info you need.
1. Trade Business Cards
One of the best things that you can do when going to the business conference is bring plenty of business cards. Networking is vitally important regardless of what industry you are in. If you talk to people at the conference, don’t hesitate to trade business cards with them. It doesn’t matter what kind of impression you make on someone if you don’t take the time to trade contact information with them. Business cards are cheap, and they can be a great way to market your business. If you make an impression on someone important, you might get a call back about a business idea at some point in the future.
2. Get the App
I was recently at SXSW down in Austin and the iOS app for this conference was absolutely essential. I also had the printed pamphlet – but it was so much easier to figure out my itinerary and keep up to date on time and venue changes for the speakers and exhibits. Another added benefit was the integrated maps and directions that my iPhone had. I had never been to Austin before and it really helped me figure out where I was going (especially in the rainy first 2 days where a cab wasn’t easy to come by!)
3. Use Social Media
In today’s world, most business people use social networks to communicate. Get a Twitter and LinkedIn account so that you can see what’s going on. At big events, many people will send out messages about what is going on. For example, an important speaker might Tweet out information about where he’ll be hanging out after his talk. This can be a great opportunity to meet new people and keep up with things as they happen. If something big is happening, you’ll know about it in real-time.
4. Come Early, Stay Late
While you might like to sleep in while traveling under normal circumstances, this is not the time to do it. Get up early and get there as soon as you can. Then make it your goal to stay as late as possible. When attending a business conference, it’s your job to be a sponge and soak up everything. You already paid to come to the conference, you might as well get everything out of it that you can.
5. Keep Colleagues Updated
If you are the only person from your company going to the conference, you should make an effort to keep everyone back home updated. Update your social networking profiles, send text messages and send emails. If you keep all of the knowledge to yourself, it probably won’t make that much of a difference to your business overall. Then when you get back to your place of business, tell others everything that you learned and make an effort to implement some of the principles.
This has been a guest post from Jacob, a life-long learner, businessman and tech maven. When he is not writing, he and his wife spend their professional time as insurance brokers.