It can be challenging trying to create a name for yourself in the corporate world. However, 70% of business leaders view networking in person as the most effective form of communication, so try to attend as many industry corporate events as possible.
This powerful, old-school way of connecting with the people who can help you along your path to success allows ample opportunity to put your networking skills to the test. Practice makes perfect, and communication via networking is no different. Here are six ways to stand out at your next corporate event.
1. Invest in the Full Pass
Even if you are just starting and your budget is tight, always opt for the entire pass so you can rub elbows with the VIPs. You’ll be making higher-level connections and can have the best seats to the most influential speakers and presentations. You’ll look like you take your brand/career and the industry seriously as well.
This level of pass introduces you to insider secrets because you’ll be interacting with influencers and leaders. You increase your exposure in the right group and might even manage to snag a few meetings or at least business cards.
Whether you are participating or simply attending as a visitor, the full pass provides you access to the places you need to be to make a better first impression. You can leverage your pass to attract more attention to what you do, your booth, or presentation.
2. Advertise Ahead of the Event
While you’ll have ample opportunity at the event to mingle and meet people, it doesn’t hurt to announce your participation or attendance to contacts. You can use your online channels, as well as your contact list, to let people know you look forward to seeing them at the event. If you have a booth, are offering handouts, or are making a presentation, extend your invitation to people to come and see you.
This adds a personal touch and helps announce your attendance. Don’t forget to use the conference’s social media pages to announce yourself as well. Send a general shout-out to attendees with a friendly comment or as part of the conversations to let people know what you plan to offer. Provide a special code that people can show you so you know they are there because of your ads so that you can measure success.
3. Use Your Budget to Create a Presence
Even little guys can use their creativity to stand out in the crowd. Do your research and make some calls to look for inspiration to create a presence. Be clever with your ideas and avoid the standard booth at the conference center Vaughan events rent with nothing but handouts and a basic computer for demos.
Think bigger and find out what equipment you might be able to rent to bring more attention to yourself. Don’t rule out creating a backdrop that is interesting and even interactive. Just be sure it fits your brand strategy and doesn’t have the opposite effect and tarnish your image.
You could even set up an internet café where you serve espressos and have tables set up with outlets where people can recharge their phones and computers. Word of mouth about your set-up might spread, offering more opportunities to schmooze.
4. Start Conversations
Don’t leave the ball in the other person’s court. Instead, command conversations and have a plan that helps you make meaningful connections with people. Have something interesting to hand out to people that will start conversations naturally while also offering a unique reminder about who you are and what you do.
Don’t waste money on pens. Instead, think of something relevant to your industry to make a statement and a lasting impression. This one-two punch of good conversation and a worthwhile handout is sure to knock their socks off.
5. Use Social Throughout the Event
Use your social media and remain active in conversation threads at the event to help draw attention to what’s happening. See what others are saying and think of clever, not pushy ways to mention what you’re up to and ask people to stop by. Live stream your presentations and take real-time pictures of anything of value so more people might find their way over to your spot.
6. Measure Metrics
Try to keep track of who you speak to, meet, and send away with information so you can measure your success. Did you get some new leads? Sign up new subscribers for your emails or newsletter? Maybe gain some new followers? How many people used your special code to get your pre-event offer?
After the event, keep track of your website traffic and social media to measure new followers or visitors. Metrics will show you how successful you were, where you need improvement, and where you out and out failed.
For more tips on how to stand out at a corporate event, call Chateau Le Jardin at 1-800-533-3009 or contact us here.