Investing in a live event - the money, the time away from your business and life - can feel risky. We’ve all been to events that haven’t really hit the mark.
The fact is, we have a lot of control over what value we get from a live event - regardless of who the speakers are or the what the content is about.
It’s all about setting intentions before we go. Setting our measures of success that are more meaningful than attend every session and avoid the afternoon tea sugar snacks.
We’re so excited for Artful Business Conference - it’s only 2 months away! So we asked all of the speakers, who have years of experience in attending, networking and speaking at live events for their best tip so that you can plan your next live event (which we truly hope is Artful Business Conference!) for wild success.
Katie Wyatt - Podcaster and Empire Builder
Intentionally set yourself no more than 3 very specific outcomes you want from the event. These could be very simple, like “I want to deepen my relationship with person X” or more focussed like “I want three quality leads for my service”. Having a short, specific list will help you plan your days, the workshop events you do and don’t participate in and how you make small decisions at the event. It feels - because it is - achievable and will also give you an absolute high when, after the event, you realise you smashed your goals.
Kate Toon - Copywriter and SEO Genius
My advice is not to put any pressure on yourself.
The events where I’ve frantically tried to suck up knowledge and network with everyone in the room I’ve found myself not enjoying the event at all.
I get easily overwhelmed with too much information and too much human-ing, so I don’t feel bad about skipping the odd session to re-energise and pull myself together.
Most events I leave with one big action that I can take away and implement and maybe one new solid business chum. That’s enough for me.
Ricci-Jane Adams - Intuitive Intelligence Trainer
Connect! I met Laura Elkaslassy at Artful 2016 and it has changed my life! Make connections. Engage. Join in. Don’t let feelings of unworthiness keep you in the corner. Everyone is there with the same passion in their hearts. No one will say go away, you can’t talk to us!
Head into the conference with this attitude … you are so worthy to be there and your presence is a blessing to your fellow attendees. That’s what being there in-person is all about! Have something to share that shows off what you do. We want to know! Be curious. Have an empty cup attitude when listening to the speakers, which basically means be willing to be surprised evern if you think you’ve heard it before.
Laura Elkaslassy - Profit Pioneer and Money Mentor
Don’t overdo it! If you aren’t feeling a session, leave it and go for a walk or take time out. Don’t expect to absorb everything. And write notes you’ll understand when you look at them two weeks later ; )
Oh, and only choose events with great coffee (we can promise, Artful has great coffee!)
Karyn Sealby - Designer, Maker and Photo Stylist
Be open minded. Before the event you might read the program and think you know which workshops you will attend. But you may just find yourself interested in something else. Go with it.
Kylie Patchett - Money Mindset and Business Coach
I'm a visual learner so my top tip for other visual peeps is to take notes in colour in an art pad - this helps us visual people to embed the learning and to more easily recall it. Post that - for the love of all things groovy, IMPLEMENT!!! All the learning in the world doesn't matter if you don't go and apply it to your own business
Shannon Bush - Business Innovator and Marketer
After the event : Follow-up!
It's the one downfall many people attending any live event fall into. If someone says they would like to connect again or hear more from you, believe them!
Be diligent and follow up with them within 72 hours of the event ending. Take into consideration any travel you may have but schedule in follow up time to do this.
The follow up isn't an opportunity to do a sell in any way. It's just a "was fabulous to meet you, let's connect to chat more". Only exception is if they specifically asked for information about a product or service.
If you don't get to follow up that quickly that's ok. But don't decide "it's been too long" or "they won't remember me" or whatever else is going on in your head is the truth. Be honest and say "I'm sorry I didn't follow up earlier. I'd still love to connect / chat, etc"
We all have busy lives. Stuff happens. It's not too late to follow up - not ever.
I'll give you an example. At last year’s Artful I spoke with about 8 makers who all approached me about being featured in the creativity section of my digital business magazine. It's the one section we struggle to fill most issues. Each said they'd send through articles. All had the link with contributor information. Only 1 followed up! Yep 1!
That's 7 opportunities missed.
So be proactive and extend the fabulous conversations and connections you'll make beyond the event and outside of a comment on each other's posts in the Facebook group. You just never know where the deeper connection may lead.
Dawn Lewis - Designer and Video Blogger
Chat to people during breaks. Ask them what their favourite takeaway was from that session and ask them about their creative biz.
My second tip is to be real - show and tell people what you do, but don’t feel like you have to sell at anyone.
Julie Gibbons - Visual Branding Coach and Maker
As a dedicated introvert, my best tip would be to do your research on the speakers before you go, know what they're going to speak about, and think of one point to talk about with them - whether it's a question or a general comment it doesn't matter. So, when you're there you can step up and say hello to them and ask them that very question!! Don't feel like you've missed an opportunity to meet them in person because you're feeling shy and you have nothing to say anyway. Honestly, it was so lovely when I did that at my first in-person Artful - and the bonus was that I got hugs from everyone too 🙂
You're going to the conference to absorb their wisdom; and because you're asking a specific question one to one - you might just get a bonus bit of wisdom, just for you (and hugs).
Gail O’Keeffe - Success Liberator and EFT Practitioner
Be yourself, be helpful, be friendly, be prepared to learn.
Make sure your business cards are up to date and that you take them with you (Artful has partnered with Moo for a discount and event delivery of all your business cards!), stretch yourself out of your comfort zone (sometimes just showing up can do this) by getting to know other attendees that you may have just stalked on Facebook, take lots of photos with your new friends & heaps of #selfies that you can repurpose and Minties...take Minties lots of them 🙂
Elle Roberts - Artful Founder and Creativity Champion
Seriously great tips!! Mine would be to have a plan before you go. Check out the program, know what sessions you are most looking forward toward to and what you hope to get out of them, think about who else is going and know who you want to seek out and connect to (attendees or speakers) and have some goals around what you want to get out of the event.
Elle Roberts is the founder of the Artful Business Community & Conference. Elle is a creativity coach who can help you tap into your own AWESOMENESS and find success doing the work that LIGHTS YOU UP!