Tiny's top 10 tips for attending events

Tips for event attendance

Industry events are great, it might be your first event helping you to get a better understanding of the market or you may be influential in your sector and a seasoned delegate. Events are a great way for you to catch up, keep a check on what is happening and make new contacts.  
 
Whatever you reason I thought I would share some of the ways that we maximise event attendance for the conferences that we attend and some of the feedback we give to SocialDayUK delegates.

You have just booked your ticket, but don’t wait until the event to start getting the most out of your ticket. If you are taking a few days out of work this is an investment, these tips will help you get the most out of the event, don’t just rock up and listen, immerse yourself into the event and who knows what it may bring. We have had some great success stories, guests getting new jobs, picking up new clients and being invited back to speak the following year.

 

 

Pre Event

 

  1.  Pre-event networking - Meet delegates attending the event, most conferences have a social media group (ours is SocialDay Community) These are a great way to talk to other delegates, meet speakers and start to plan your event.

 

  1. Plan your sessions, a full programme will usually be available prior to the event, you can always contact the organisers to request one. Our event has two tracks running on workshop day, and many events run multiple tracks, plan what you want to see and save time deliberating and choosing on the day. Have a look at floor plans, note how long it takes to walk and factor in those refreshment breaks.  

 

  1. To help decide which sessions you want to see, check out some of the speaker's videos, many will have sessions recorded and available.  It's a good way to get a flavour of what the presentation style is, remember though each event is different and each audience is different a good speaker will tailor content to that audience.

 

At the Event

 

  1. Registration - Walking in and grabbing your badge, all the staff will be on hand to register you, if you have any questions now's the time to get them out, organisers will be on hand and you’ll get a quicker response

 

  1. After you grab your badge (depending if your on time) usually coffee and networking will take place, look around and if you don’t know anyone it can be daunting, you’ll see old friends chuckling, professional networkers walking the floor, DO NOT revert to type and start scanning your mobile phone pretending to be busy or flicking through the conference programme (you’ve already planned the day) get out and meet some new connections, business and life are about relationships! Be brave!

 

  1. Introductions - It's not always easy to meet new people in a conference environment, but people on their own generally feel the same way and are most likely glad that someone has reached out.

 

Make life easy, be natural, be yourself, but know what you want to say.  Break the ice, say good morning ask what sessions they are looking forward too, don’t bang on about yourself, if asked then give them a quick overview of what you do, but be prepared to listen to them too!

 

At SocialDay we have plenty of opportunity to network, refreshment breaks, lunch (and yes we actually provide food) and our networking parties (strange but most delegates seem extremely social after a few drinks)   

 

The Main Event

 

  1. We run a social media marketing event, naturally, our guests like to share lots of the content and jump on the #socialdayuk.  Some prefer to take notes, we record all sessions so you can watch them back over and over again, many events also do this. Don’t just take notes, try active listening, pull a list of questions you want to be answered together, most sessions will have time for a Q&A, and most speakers will also stick around at an event, so it's good to have some questions you want answering when you meet a speaker rather than small talk, think of it as real value.  

 

  1. Content - pull all the amazing tips you have been interested enough to jot down in your notebook into an article, blog post or review and share it across your own social networks.  Top tip, dress it up as a review and you’ll get conference organisers share it post-event and no doubt for marketing the next event, we certainly do.

 

  1. Put your out of office on - If its urgent people will get in touch with you, don’t ruin your own experience by getting stressed out working during the sessions.

 

Post-event

 

  1. - Follow up with those connections you’ve made, arrange a call or just connect. You have made plenty of new connections, don’t just file business cards, actively reach out and continue to develop your network.  Even in social media it's the human aspect that counts the most.

 

We hope these tips help, if you have any questions about SocialDay please drop us a line.