There are plenty of guides on what you should do at corporate events. But if you're going to a high-class corporate event venue where you want to make a good impression and useful connects with important people, then there's also a list of things that you shouldn't do.
You don't necessarily have to be there at the event venue “before” time. But that's what gives you a very valuable 30-60 minutes to meet others who are there, with free time to talk to you. The same people wouldn't even give you an appointment if you tried to meet them at their office. So being on time at an event means that you're actually too late to network.
If you arrive on time when the event is starting and got no time to network, then don't try to make up for it by talking to people around you. They're focusing on the presentation or talk that's happening on-stage. You should do the same and wait for a break or the end of the event to do the networking you missed.
Social network addiction is a common syndrome, but you should at least learn to stay away from FB, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media while you're at the event. Meet real people, and network with them, instead of asking for their social handles and then chatting with them online while they're next to you.
If you happen to be one of the people on stage wearing a lapel mic, then make sure you switch it off before you start expressing your private opinion about the other members of the panel who were on stage with you.
A full 39% of participants in a survey admitted to dozing off in the middle of meetings. It's far easier to fall asleep during a presentation, since the focus is entirely on the person on stage. But it can end up as a fiasco, once people around you realize that you're snoozing.
A brain freeze in the middle of a speech is not the kind of PR you want, but it makes for good youtube and TV coverage. If you're expecting to be taken seriously, don't forget your train of thought. It's best to keep notes and slides handy, and refer to them as needed.
If you're in a hurry to go after the event, you'll best the best networking time, which is meeting people after the event. There's no time limitation, and you can continue the meeting with serious prospects who might actually be interested in your business or product.
Everyone's busy with the events on-stage, networking, and checking out the product demos in the exhibition areas, while you're standing in line at the buffet – before they start serving. Being first in line for lunch at a corporate event isn't the kind of top ranking you should be aiming for.
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Events are for networking. You connect with potential clients, business partners and important people. You promote your brand and yourself as an industry authority. Instead, if you try to close a sale in the first meeting itself, that's going to portray you as a pushy salesperson, and it's not good for your brand either.
All the work you did meeting event attendees, collecting visiting cards and adding them as fans and followers on your social accounts is wasted if you don't follow up with them immediately after the event. It doesn't take more than a few days to forget which person is connected to which company and product.
The followup doesn't have to be anything special. Just a simple email reintroducing yourself and your business, and reminding them that you met at the event. Maybe you can also ask for a meeting to discuss business.