Tips for Conference and Expos

The Black Sea SummIT underscored that it would be a good idea to provide some tips for your next public presentation. These points would apply to expos, conferences, or simply delivering presentations about your company – whether in a B2B, investor or public format. Whether you are an app developer or pretty much in any business, the same factors apply.

Most conferences, trade fairs and expos 1) rent vendor/exhibit space, 2) openly accept guest speakers, and 3) offer great opportunities for meeting others in the industry, networking and making deals. It is always worth attending local events relevant to your trade. Costs of admission, travel, lodging and the time involved warrant prioritizing any non-local events you attend. This warrants doing some research in advance on which events best match your interests and desired opportunities. It also mandates a budget and establishing goals that will contribute to some kind of return on your investment.

The focus here is on three things to help you get the most out of your next conference.

One – Research Event Participants

Knowing who will be participating at an event provides an open door to business opportunities. They are looking for opportunities, too. If they weren’t, they probably would not be attending. Make a list of participants and try to define what you have to offer them along with what they may have to offer you.

  1. List the people and companies you want to meet.
  2. Define what you can offer them or what they can offer you.
  3. Where possible, make advanced arrangements to meet with those on your list.
  4. Seek out everyone else at the conference to set up a convenient meeting.

Depending upon your business, product or service line, possibilities exist for negotiating special terms for advertising, distribution, cross-promotions, software trials, training, perhaps sharing of market data. There could also be opportunities to initiate agreements with mobile device manufacturers to ship with your app pre-installed. In some cases, there may be opportunities to form joint ventures or special purpose vehicles to enter new markets.

Knowing who will be there and having desired outcomes for each will transform the event into a high intensity engagement where really big deals are possible.

Two – Preparing Presentations

The difference between a good presentation and a bad one comes down to three fairly simple factors.

  1. Have an Awesome Elevator Pitch. You are competing with lots of other companies to grab people’s attention and memory. Your product or service is not “important” to them – the REASON why they would want your product or service IS very important to them. Aim for one sentence that succinctly defines what you do and why they need it.
  2. Ability for the audience to “See what you show” – If you plan on delivering a PowerPoint Presentation – Simplify and use BIG Text so people can read it 200 feet away. If necessary, provide free, high-quality handouts of additional important or detailed information to your audience that they would not be able to read from the projection.
  3. Stick to Three Core Points – the most important parts of your product or service as they relate to the audience you will be in front of. Your audience is being inundated with information. Structure your presentation according to those three points – 1, 2, 3 – relative to the time you are allotted which may be 5, 15 or 30 minutes.

Three – Press Packet and Press People

Most events are covered by several press agencies – newspapers, television, bloggers, industry magazines, etc.   All have the intention of producing at least one article or story about the event.  Take advantage of this for free press and publicity.

One vital step in preparing for the conference is to have a press packet tailored for the event and the kind of media exposure you want. Note that for these events especially, your press packet should include some “quotes” from your CEO/CIO/CTO/CFO, co-founders, president or vice-presidents.  These are as good as gold to journalists writing stories.

This should include any recent app releases, upcoming releases,  beta tests, calls for beta testers, search for investors, a story about your company or endeavors that is fit for a broader audience, or something more creative.  It could also be useful for letting the person know you are someone who can help source information for them.

Make it a point to find the press people at these events and you could be handsomely rewarded with free press coverage and possibly a long-term relationship with a media venue.  Odds are you helped make their job a little bit easier.

These points are good whether you are a mobile app developer, in tech or not.  If you intend to deliver a presentation in front of a large group of people, spend some time rehearsing in front of others.  The advanced preparation is likely to help you stand out and deliver a better, more memorable impression to the people you want to reach.  These are events where people are looking for deals, the worst thing they can do is say no.  Get the right people to say yes, and you won’t ever have to worry about hearing “no” again.


Project Manager at the Opera Mobile Store providing Sales-Marketing support. Content development and research.

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