Published July 12, 2012
What's your best tip for launching a new company at an industry event or conference?
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. The YEC recently published #FixYoungAmerica: How to Rebuild Our Economy and Put Young Americans Back to Work (for Good), a book of 30+ proven solutions to help end youth unemployment. Email your questions about best practices for starting up and/or managing a small business to email@example.com.
No. 1: Give a Keynote Speech
From Raoul Davis of Ascendant Strategy ( http://www.ascendantstrategy.net/ )
If you want to launch a new company at an industry event or conference, try to secure an opportunity to be a keynote speaker. If you can't organically secure it, consider sponsoring and purchasing the opportunity to be a keynote. As a speaker, you'll have your target audience listening to you and buying into your brand for 30 to 40 minutes. There is no better way to secure a flurry of leads.
No. 2: Learn from Disrupt
From Ben Lang of EpicLaunch ( http://epiclaunch.com/ )
It's very helpful to check out the winners of TechCrunch Disrupt. Lot to learn from their presentations and products which can you help launch most effectively.
No. 3: Don't Do It!
From Todd Garland of BuySellAds.com ( http://buysellads.com )
Ignore awards, getting press, and all related "recognition" that will just be distractions when launching your company. Focus on your customers and your product!
No. 4: Influence the Influencers
From Louis Lautman of Young Entrepreneur Society ( http://www.louislautman.com/ )
Find out who will be the influencers at this conference and get them on board with your new company. Try giving away your product or service to them for free to experience if you have to, so they begin talking about it. There is nothing better than word of mouth, especially when from the mouths that influence more people.
No. 5: Try Out Sponsorship
From Roger Bryan of RCBryan & Associates ( http://www.rcbryan.com )
If you really want to launch right, sponsor the event. Get your brand on everything!
No. 6: Integrate Your Company In
From Aron Schoenfeld of Do It In Person LLC ( http://www.doitinperson.com )
Most people that try and launch at an event fail because all they do is display a logo, hand out flyers or take an exhibitor booth. Find a unique way your company can be a part of the event and integrate your product into it, so that more people use it and get to experience it.
No. 7: Start Before the Conference
From Christopher Kelly of Sentry Centers ( http://www.sentrycenters.com )
Once the conference is in full swing, it can be hard to meet with the right people. A small amount of time invested in reaching out to key personalities before the event can yield tremendous results. Review speakers, conference organizers, sponsors and other key attendees, and introduce yourself and your product. You'll have pre-launch momentum to leverage when going into the conference.
No. 8: Get Outside the Board Room
From Jordan Guernsey of Molding Box ( http://moldingbox.com/ )
Business is done after the day's events, so throw a crazy party! Get your face and handshake in front of everyone, and then create a forum where you can continue interacting after the formal events are over. They’ll remember your name.
No. 9: Make Your Presence Known
From John Hall of Digital Talent Agents ( http://www.digitaltalentagents.com/ )
Don’t half-ass the event. Get there early and network to build buzz. Do something creative with your booth or product so everyone knows you’re there. Don’t leave until the end, when you’re sure you’ve done everything to let people know about your product or service.
No. 10: Get Mentioned Onstage
From Lauren Perkins of Perks Consulting ( http://perksconsulting.com )
Do your research in advance and know who the speakers are. Before the event, find ways to introduce your company and product via social, introductions, etc. Once there, have your team talking to presenters and panelists so what you're working on is top of mind. Seeding the conversation prior to them hitting the stage improves your chances of getting mentioned by influencers, and piquing the audience's interest.