Five strategies for success after Fresh Summit
Congratulations! You’ve survived another Fresh Summit. You made great connections and came home with a stack of leads. You gathered intel that can help propel your company forward.
Now it’s time to finish strong by capitalizing on your conference experience.
1. Capture the data
Whatever system you use for managing contact information, do it now before your memory begins to fade. I like to keep notes in my customer relationship management system about where and how I met someone, who introduced us, what we spoke about and my next steps. These touchpoints are so helpful during future outreach. Read over these notes prior to the next industry event to refresh your memory.
2. Follow up
This seems like a no-brainer, but I’m continually surprised by how few people actually do it and do it well. Schedule time in your calendar for follow up and make it happen. In your communication, remind the individual what you spoke about and be sure to include messaging about what’s in it for them to continue the conversation. Along with your e-mails and phone calls, make connections on LinkedIn, Twitter or other platforms.
3. Process your intel
Review your notes from the Fresh Summit speakers and capture any nuggets in a way that’s useful and actionable. Did you discover any new technology or research that deserves your attention? What information did you collect for co-workers who couldn’t attend the show? Don’t let this intel sit idle. Process it. Share it. Flag it for more attention.
4. Prep for next year
Keep a running list of what you wish you had done differently this year. What was needed at your booth? What detail was missed in your planning? What would have made your advance outreach more compelling? Think about what you observed other companies doing that might work for yours. This tactic has been particularly useful for me over the years. Perhaps you think you’ll remember these details when it’s time to plan for the next show, but it’s so much more effective to do it now.
5. Evaluate your results
Hopefully, you arrived in Orlando with a clear vision of what success would look like. How did your reality measure up to that vision? Consider what metrics you can use in your evaluation for an objective review. Beyond the numbers, ask subjective questions as well.
Check in with each member of your Fresh Summit team to get their take on what went well and what could be improved upon. I advise having these conversations one-on-one. This will make it more likely that people will share their honest opinions rather than being swayed by the group.
Follow these strategies to squeeze every last bit of value from your Fresh Summit investment and set yourself up for greater success at your next event.
Wendy McManus is the former retail program manager for the National Mango Board and is now a leadership coach at Connect 2 Potential.