Tech events and in-person conferences are great opportunities for networking and selling. They’re a significant chance to mingle with a multitude of industry experts, innovative companies and visionary speakers in one location. But, the right preparation before the event can transform your visit from a nice day out, to the day you secured investment and closed a huge deal.
It pays (literally) to plan how you will maximise your time at each business event you attend. From pre-show prep to post-event follow-ups, there is a lot to be done. So the Builder.ai team have pulled together their learnings from multiple visits to the world’s biggest trade shows (such as Gitex, Web summit, Slush and Leap) to create an event prep checklist for your next tech event:
- Have your elevator pitch ready
- Know your numbers for investors
- Be really clear on your idea and the benefits of that for your customers
- Have some goodies/information on hand
- Create a prototype (we can help you with that!)
It's a quick, memorable description of what you do and what you’re about. So keep it short and snappy. The goal of your speech is to create enough interest in your business to earn that all-important second conversation. Not to convince the person you're talking to they should hire you then and there. We wish.
Know your numbers for investors
There are always investors at tech events keeping an eye out for potential projects and opportunities. To prepare for that potentially serendipitous moment, keep in mind your average cost per sale, annual revenue projections, growth trajectory and top-line numbers for your five-year plan! You needn't keep them memorised like a parrot, but having them jotted down on an easy-to-access note will show you’ve done your homework.
Be clear and concise
Tech event attendees are bombarded with information, pamphlets, leaflets and facts all day long. So summarising is your best friend. Keep your company benefits and perks concise, focusing on exactly what’s best for your customers' needs. Although we know you’d love to talk about every package available and the hundreds of brilliant offers - prioritise the key interests of your audience by personalising each conversation to their needs - which you should aim to discover as soon as possible, without being too forceful. And remember that not every product or service is for everyone, spend your time focusing on connections and customers that are in your space, without feeling bad about cutting interactions short with those who aren’t right for you.
Who doesn’t love a freebie?
Enticing visitors with a branded bottle of water, or a lovely hot coffee is a refreshing and thoughtful way to consider your visitors' needs if you are lucky enough to have a space or an exhibition stand at a tech event. And it is a great way to open up conversations with potential clients. However, if you are attending as a delegate but still want to share information or branded merch - pens never go out of fashion and fit perfectly into a pocket so carrying a few branded ones with you to hand out is a smooth move. Business cards are also a handy tool (although connecting immediately on LinkedIn is another option here) and you can even add a QR code to take your new connections to a landing page that recaps the information you shared at the event (this one always works well for us).
Show a prototype (here comes Builder.ai to the rescue)
Investors and customers alike both want to see how a product works. We’re naturally fascinated with the ‘how’ as much as the ‘why’. Having a prototype app to demonstrate your brand and your benefits is hugely beneficial for people to visualise how they’d use it.
With Builder.ai you can build your free prototype to wow the techies at your next event. We’ve simplified the process so all you have to do is choose from our library of reusable features and watch them fit together like building blocks. Our clever AI project manager, Natasha, will even guide you through it.
Don’t forget to enjoy it!
Feeling ready? Well, pop on some comfortable shoes (there is always a lot of walking on event days) grab a lightweight jacket (what is up with the air conditioning in conference centres?) and follow our checklist for your most successful event yet. Prepare well, be confident about your company benefits and remember to have fun. It might seem daunting in the beginning but with practice, it will become easier and you’ll be a pro in no time!
Good luck - you’ve got this.
Ridhima is the Global Head of Product Marketing at Builder.ai. With 16+ years of experience in delivering data-driven, strategic marketing campaigns, Ridhima’s innovative approach has accelerated growth within the product marketing and content teams.