Congresses are key milestones in the industry calendar offering the opportunity for delegates to learn, be inspired, promote their services, unveil clinical developments – or just to have fun. However, many of us dont take advantage of the networking opportunity at congresses to build relationships with the media, potential partners, suppliers and manufacturers.
Julia Kendrick brings the presence of Kendrick PR to many congresses all over the country -both as a speaker and working on behalf of her clients. Over time, she has formed some strong working relationships through networking at these events, and so we have put together this blog, to help outline how you can really maximise your own profile at a congress.
It can be a good idea to research the event ahead of time so that you know exactly who and what to expect. That way you can plan your time and your focus efficiently in order to meet your goals for the day, particularly at larger events where it simply isn’t possible to attend all of the sessions and opportunities on offer. Events like this are very busy, with everyone rushing between sessions and meetings, so planning and organising the time to suit you can be very beneficial. Don’t be afraid to stray from your plans, though, if something unexpected comes up that you can’t afford to miss. It’s wise to profile your attendance and any activities ahead of time on your blog/website and social media, such as sessions that you’re looking forward to or are perhaps speaking at, where your booth is if you have one, and who you’d like the chance to connect with whilst there.
??At The Event
Don’t be afraid to talk to anyone and everyone; make time for face time! Take the opportunity to set up face-to-face meetings with brands or businesses youve been keen to work with. Whether they are the keynote speaker or the person you’ve found yourself sitting next to, everyone deserves a little time and respect. You could learn a lot from the unlikeliest of people – asking questions shows that you’re interested and helps you to learn about each person and how you could benefit from them, or vice versa. Attend the official networking sessions as this is the opportunity to pitch yourself and identify potential collaborations.
If this is an event that you attend annually, you will begin to form strong working relationships and friendships, as well as a developed understanding of the congress. This will help you to recognise which parts of the event are valuable to you so that you can plan your time better.
Above all, have fun with it! Take lots of videos and pictures for your social media so that your following can get an insight into the congress, what you’re up to and who you’re meeting with. Mini video blogs (vlogs) talking about your experience, what you’ve learned and the key opportunities you’ve found are great! You can tag the congress organisers and any high-profile people you’ve met so that they can share it to their own social media, too.
After The Event
You’ve probably collected a mountain of business cards at this point, so it helps to try and organise them; make notes on the back so you don’t forget any details or conversations – this will help to prioritise your contacts as well.
Don’t act immediately! Give it at least a day or so before contacting anyone because your message might get lost among swamped inboxes following any congress. Take the time to personalise your emails so that the person feels as though you remember them and show a genuine interest. Try and keep your emails short, implying continued contact and a reason to reply.
Contact Kendrick PR
Would you like to speak to Julia further about how you can maximise your profile at a congress? Get in touch, and she would be delighted to have a chat with you!