How often do you attend industry conferences? Do you occasionally question the value based on the price of the attendance fee, travel, and time away from work?
There is great value in attending a conference. Here are a few things to consider:
Become a part of the community on social media
When you attend an industry conference, you can become a part of a community that is posting and sharing the experience on social media together. Not only is it fun to follow your colleagues and view their conference posts, but your peers will also be doing the same, gaining huge exposure for their companies. There is value in contributing to a hashtag that so many people in your industry are following. Take advantage of the social media opportunities that a media conference offers and live post your experience!
Create new business relationships
Attending a conference is one of the easiest ways to network and meet people in your field. Take advantage of the opportunity that a conference offers you by simply being friendly. Because everyone works in the same field, it is easy and natural to strike up a conversation with the person sitting next to you. Attain the full value by participating in all events, activities, and mixers. These contacts are all people that could possibly lead to new business opportunities or collaborations. Make your presence known amongst the experts, clients, and competitors in attendance.
Meet new media contacts
Not only can you make new business relationships, but there are plenty of opportunities to meet new media contacts as well. Because there is usually press attending these events, this is a great opportunity for you to meet people from media outlets whom you have not worked with before. Introducing yourself to anyone who is covering the event can lead to a mention in their article and possibly future coverage as well!
No matter how long you have been in the field or how successful you are, you can always learn something from others. Industry conferences attract so many different kinds of people in your field, each of them with different backgrounds and experiences. Conferences are a terrific place to gain inspiration from your peers or even from the event itself!
There is more value to be found in industry conferences than just the speakers who present. Make sure that you fully engage yourself when you attend, taking note of your environment and peers. You never know who you will meet or what you might gain.
Shown: Chef Peter Sproul at The Art of Catering Food 2015
Catersource and the International Caterers Association are presenting The Art of Catering Food August 15–17. For chefs, cooks, owners and just about anyone who wants to make cuisine the main event, The Art of Catering Food 2016 will help you learn trends and techniques used by successful chefs throughout the industry. Learn from experts and peers during three days of culinary-intensive sessions, jam-packed with action and up-close and personal learning experiences. Registration is open – click here to get the details, register early, and guarantee a spot in this exciting culinary conference.
Leila Lewis is known as the Wedding PR expert over at Be Inspired PR.