A social media conference is a huge opportunity to build relationships with extraordinary people both on and offline, people who might have significant impact on your professional or personal success. To make sure that you maximize the return on your investment of time and money to attend, you need to step up your game to make a long lasting impression.
Here are 7 tips to get you ready to bring in new clients, followers and fans.
#1 Be focused.
Proper Prior Planning. Take time weeks before the conference to think through and write down why you are attending. What do you want to achieve? Who do you want to meet? The more clearly you articulate what you want and need from the conference, the more likely you can plan and execute your mission.
#2 Know your targets & gather intelligence.
Get the list of conference attendees. Then go through the list and note those you want to meet, add them on all your social media accounts and learn about their human side. Keep that list with you at all times during the conference so you know whom you’ve met and whom you still need to meet.
#3 Build your brand.
Adopt the following mindset for relationship building: generosity, vulnerability, candour and accountability. This is what is takes to build a strong foundation for your brand. Make sure that when you’re interacting one-to-one online with people that you’re being authentic and candid.
#4 Strike early.
Don’t wait for the conference to start your networking. A week or two beforehand, start connecting with at least the top three people you want to be SURE to meet through Twitter, Facebook and Google hangout. Look for other opportunities to build your brand as well, get their attention just by asking a thoughtful question during the Q&A. People will be eager to approach you once you’ve been introduced in a public forum.
#5 Find a way to help everyone.
A helpful option is to become an info-hub by becoming an expert on the conference program. Pick the brains of people attending and anyone else willing to share the ins and outs of what’s happening on the topics discussed, important hashtags and influencers, Google Hangout is a perfect place for this. Engage in conversation that really matters to you and them: interests, passions, pains and needs. Be human, open up and listen, listen, listen.
#6 Take names and make commitments.
Before you conclude add any new followers, like fan pages, comment on their speeches and their work. When you feel you’ve made a special connection, be sure to make a commitment to each other. Accountability is the final mind set for building deep, sustainable relationships.
#7 Follow up or fail.
Make sure to create follow-up e-mails each night of the conference or following a speaker’s presentation. Leave an impression. Marketers can benefit greatly both personally and professionally from social media marketing conference. The connections you make can last a lifetime.