By the time you add up the cost of travel, accommodations and admission, attending a conference requires a substantial investment of time and money. So, how do you ensure that you are getting the most out of your experience?
These five points can help to ensure you achieve conference success.
Do Your Research
There are so many different conferences on the market. Instead of choosing the one that is closest to home, why not take this time to expand your opportunities. Look for a conference where the line-up of speakers, activities and workshops are most relevant to your field and interests. You will 100% reap more benefits from doing your research and stepping into what could be your next stage of career development.
Research the Speakers
Now that You’ve found the perfect conference, it is time to review the speaker line-up! Most conferences publish a full itinerary online. Once you know who the speakers are, research each person extensively and determine who is most likely to offer insights and takeaways that are valuable to you. Doing this will help you plan your days and block out which sessions you will attend during the conference. Remember, there are likely to be conflicting times for speakers and workshops. Consider how much information you can absorb in a single day and pace yourself.
Connect Through Social Media
If you haven’t already, get on social media. Once you’ve joined the conference conversation, promote your attendance and reach-out to see who else is attending. This is a great way of scouting out what major connections you want to make during the event. Another valuable social media strategy is to make sure you follow speakers and organizers. If you use social media to actively engage with other delegates before the conference, there is a good chance that people will remember you when you arrive.
One of the best ways of creating key business relationships is socializing at a conference networking event. If you choose not to attend a conference, you will pass up the opportunity to meet like-minded entrepreneurs, investors and event speakers and organizers that could really tip the scales for your career development.
Networking and socializing at conferences can be a lot of fun, but it is also an investment. Make sure it pays off by following up with everyone you’ve met during the conference. It is important to personalize the follow-up messages by thinking of ways you might work together in the future and pursue a relationship.
There are countless benefits of attending a conference, but what you get out of the experience largely depends on what you put in. These five steps are a sure-fire way to make sure you have a successful conference experience.