For about twelve years, I was a marketing consultant for enterprise clients and startups. One of my specialties was event coordination, where I spent thousands of hours planning trade show booths, helping prepare speeches, assembling give-away crews, designing and procuring promotional products and everything else that went into running big, valuable events. Aside from the busy schedule to maintain, and more boring shows than I care to recall, I did learn a few things about getting the most out of a business conference. The things I was forced to learn over a grueling dozen years, you get to learn below for free!
Why are you going to CoinGeek?
Above everything else, be conscious of why you are attending. An itinerary is going to look very different for someone looking to discover a new business partner versus someone who just wants to get sandwiched between Steve Shadders and Daniel Connolly for a half-baked selfie to post to Twetch.
There is going to be a ton of information on the official schedule, and the after-hours talks are sure to be invaluable too. With that in mind, here are my recommendations for getting the most out of the CoinGeek Conference.
Solidify yourself and your brand NOW!
Do you have business cards ready? Have you updated your social media profiles? How do you want your new contacts to stay in touch with you after the conference? Making sure your business identity and your contact information are all up to date will save you a ton of time and raise your confidence during the conference. Asking someone to follow you on twitter is far less professional than handing them a premium business card that has your preferred contact information already printed.
Make a list of goals
Do you want to meet potential developers for your business idea? Are you a programmer looking for investors with a business plan? Do you have a viable bitcoin business, but want to make a relationship with a miner for direct connection and fixed fees? Maybe you just want to make relationships with people who can teach you something interesting about Bitcoin.
One thing that will set you apart is making sure you have a list of goals and stay on point! There are so many ways to waste time at these sorts of events, because they are strategically designed to stun the senses. Do not make the mistake of having spent all your time at the open bar or getting side-tracked by things that do not directly benefit you. Choose a few “must-haves” and “like-to-haves” and pursue them like your life depends on it.
Make specific appointments including slots for free time
There is a lot of opportunity at the conference, but if you already know there are certain things on your list that you absolutely cannot afford to miss, make appointments now. Remember, you are the one who loses if you do not fulfill everything on your “must haves” list.
However, you also never know who you will run into at the conference, so be careful not to overbook yourself either. Make sure you have some free time in your schedule to be able to make an impromptu appointment with someone you did not know you would meet, or have drinks with a new friend who could become a powerful ally.
Practice your elevator pitch
If you have a specific business idea that you want to explain to people, make sure you know how you are going to state it and what the common objections and follow up questions might be. This is shaping up to be the last CoinGeek Conference before Bitcoin SV businesses and apps become mainstream, so it is crucial that you position your business into an upward trajectory rapidly. That means your first impression might be your last opportunity to connect with the right people during this early boot-strapping phase. So, practice and polish your pitch!
There will be a massive amount of information shared at CoinGeek London. Get a notebook or a note-taking app and take down important info so it does not get lost in the malaise of the crowd or an overload of information. If something sparks inspiration, keep it noted so you can reference or research it later and turn it into something valuable.
If you connected well with someone, write down a highlight or two on what you talked about, or something you learned from them specifically. When you follow up later, you may want to reference it.
None of the above matters if you are not going to capitalize on what you have learned. The connections you make at CoinGeek London could be life-changing if you follow up effectively. If you said you would connect on Twitter, follow and send a DM. If you shared Handcash handles or Twetch ID numbers, connect with each other there!
Bitcoin SV allows extremely rapid deployment of your minimum viable product, so make the most of your time and investment by connecting effectively with your new contacts and knowledge after the conference.
Business is great, but also just be yourself! CoinGeek Conferences are also supposed to be fun, and the after-party is a world class spectacle to behold, so maybe the conference will just be an opportunity to see your friends from around the world and share in some celebration of your business, your favorite apps or the success of the Genesis upgrade.
Now that you are sufficiently armed to attend the most significant conference of big blockers and business-minded bitcoiners, there should be very little holding you back from success except for your own proof of work. If you want to connect with me at CoinGeek London, send me a quick message including #CGL on Handcash! I will have my business cards, notebook and itinerary ready to go when I arrive, so make sure you have your elevator pitch ready.
See you in London!
New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.