Want to feel calm and connected at a conference?
As someone who spends most of her days sitting in front of a monitor, entering a crowded room filled with hundreds of strangers is incredibly intimidating. Even as a speaker I am continually faced with rooms filled with people I don’t know, and that doesn’t make it any easier.
There is always that feeling I will completely forget how to hold a conversation and my mind will go blank.
What do I say if they ask me what I do?
Oh, my goodness, I don’t remember how to tell them what I do.
No matter what conference is ahead, here are a few ways to help you feel more calm and connected before, during and after the conference.
BEFORE THE CONFERENCE
When you signed up for the conference, there was a reason.
What were the reasons?
What will attending the event help you do?
What do you want to return with?
Who do you want to connect with?
How will you use the information you collect?
When will you use the information you collect?
Think about why you are attending the event and create a list of priorities that will help you achieve the goals you established when you decided to attend the conference.
Choose one to three priorities that are most important to you.
Learn Something New | What skill are you looking to cultivate or improve? Who should you connect with? Which sessions should you attend?
Find a Solution to a Specific Problem | Is there someone or something available at the conference that can help you?
Meet Like-Minded People | What type of like-minded people? A network for more referral business? A community for more support? A person for a potential joint venture or partnership?
Generate Leads | Who at the conference is likely to be your Ideal Client? How can you connect with them at the conference?
Make Plans to Connect
Don’t wait until the conference begins to meet people.
Use social media to reach out to other attendees who have posted with the event hashtag prior to the conference. Spark up a conversation and make plans to meet up on the first day.
Know Your Heartfelt Pitch
Your pitch doesn’t have to be a sales pitch. Unless you are primarily looking for new clients, you don’t need to sell what you do.
You just need a simple statement that says:
Your name, business name, what you do and why you do it.
Hi, I’m Carmen Perez. I have a lifestyle blog, the Wellbeing Messenger. It’s for high-achieving women in business who love travel. I share how to achieve radical personal success without sacrificing your health, wealth, and happiness, while living with passion, purpose, and play so you may create a business your life loves.
Prepare to Start Conversation
Not knowing what to say stops people from just saying hello. Don’t let that happen to you.
When you arrive at the conference you will be stress and tired, the last thing you want to do is just go with the flow.
Have 3-5 talking points you can use as conversation starters.
If the conversation slows, try one of these:
Have you been to the conference before?
What are you hoping to come away with?
How far did you travel to get here?
Create a Lead Magnet
Prepare a giveaway for other event attendees. This way you can offer your lead magnet to new contacts.
DURING THE CONFERENCE
When you arrive at the conference, it’s time to play. Have a good time.
Plan to Bring the Joy
If you are nervous, take a time out to get yourself together. Tune into your purpose and why you are there. Hold that energy and let it carry you through the conference.
Most people attending a conference, do so on their own. Look for those who may be flying solo also, and confidently introduce yourself knowing they are as happy to speak to you as you are to speak to them.
Engage on Social Media
Now is not the time to hide. Put yourself out there. Let the world know what you are up to and why you are there.
Find and use the conference social media hashtag on your favorite social media platform.
Connect with a Conference Companion
You can be alone, but not on your own with a conference companion. Find someone else who is attending on their own and ask him to be your conference companion. When you find yourself feeling alone or on your own when you don’t want to be, find your conference companion.
Eat One Meal a Day with People You Don’t Know
Yes, I know it’s fun to spend time with easy connections but remember why you decided to attend the conference. Make an attempt to meet 5 new people each day of the conference.
Bring business cards with you to the event and give them away.
Focus on Authentic Connections
Make an effort to meet people you want to learn more about. Don’t just look for connections. Look for people you can begin a new relationship with. You never know where these relationships will take you.
AFTER THE CONFERENCE
When you leave the conference, your work is not over. Now it’s time to use what you went to the conference to get.
Two to three days after the conference, gather the business cards, notes, and documents you collected. It’s time to put it to use.
Follow up by connecting further through social media and email.
Create a Plan
Review your documents and your notes. It’s time to create an action plan.
Using the contacts and information you gained during the conference, create a strategy to put everything that you have, to work for you, your brand, and your business.
Outstanding conference experiences don’t start and end with the conference. They begin long before and done well the benefits of the experience will last long after.
Let go of any anxiety or pressure. Use that I shared here to create a plan that will help you make the most of every moment. Remember to have fun. It’s an extraordinary experience. I look forward to seeing you there. If you’d like to connect, email me at Carmen[at]WellbeingMessenger[dot]com.
Also, if you enjoyed this article, please share it with a friend you think will enjoy it. There are share links at the bottom of this post. Your share goes far and means the world to me and our mission.
Until next time, live with passion, purpose, and play.
The Wellbeing Messenger
Growth ~ Marketing ~ Performance
Author, Motivational Speaker, Mentor, Mother, Wife, and Lover of Life
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