Last year I wrote an article about 3 tricks to conquering the Collision conference. Collision is considered to be “America’s fastest growing tech conference” -collision.com. With over 20,000+ attendees, 4,500+ companies, and 110 represented countries, words do not do justice to how impressive this conference truly was. Last year, Collision was hosted in New Orleans and I had the opportunity to attend. I was able to maximize my experience by using three key tricks that I would like to share with you.
1) Setup Meetings Before the Conference
Collision has an amazing tool that I think is the secret sauce that they give to all of their attendees: ACCESS! Through my user profile, I had access to literally every single person that attended the conference. The speakers, investors, media, everyone! I had the opportunity to send messages to people like Chris Sacca, Jessica Alba, and Terrell Owens. Of course none of the above responded, but the point is that they could have and I would have never had known unless I tried.
Using the mindset to be bold and cold message investors, speakers, media, etc. was the the true key to my success while at Collision. I sent hundred of messages the Thursday before Collision and honestly expected 2-5 responses. I got 23! This number grew larger as some of the people I ended up meeting made introductions for me to others as well. Dedicating a day to prepare before the conference provided huge dividends in the end.
2) Use the Tools the Conference Provides to Maximize Experience
Another great tool that Collision provides for all the attendees is an app for mobile devices. It was filled with highly useful tools like messaging, a customizable schedule, and a contact list. I used the schedule to plan out different talks that I wanted to attend on different days. I used the messenger to arrange the location and meeting times with others, follow ups, and introductions to other people.
The special feature on the contact list of the app allowed users to be able to scan users to get their contact information. I was able to fully tap into these resources to plan out entire days, effectively communicate with other attendees, and create avenues for follow up to continue build up relationships created while at Collision.
3) After Hour Social Events
If I learned nothing else, it is that some of the best networking occurs during the after hours of a conference. The first day there is a pub crawlw which takes groups of attendees to different bars. Ultimately, everyone ends up at the final location where for the big sponsored happy hour.
During the day at Collision, it can be overwhelming and challenging to approach people to talk about your business. During the happy hours, people are more relaxed and genuinely want to meet as many new contacts as possible. Meeting people during these social hours throughout the week was extremely helpful. Now I had several friendly faces see during the Day at Collision and I would make intros for them and they would do the same for me. Social events help create friendships which leads to more business for your company.
Using these three tricks, I was able to conquer the Collision conference. I plan on using these tricks in all future conferences that I will be attending. I encourage you to implement these tricks and see how you can maximize your conference experience.
If you interested in tech, I encourage you to check out how to build an app without knowing how to code.