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Marketing Event Attendee Success Guide

This content was originally featured in the September 27, 2023 newsletter found here:

We’re in full swing of event season. People are traveling again. And, if you’re like me, you have mixed emotions about the whole thing. Prior to Covid, we would publish a marketing event attendees guide to success for each conference and it’s about time we brought that back.

1. Stay hydrated. This is probably the most important tip. You’ll be sitting in dry airplanes and trains to get to the event. You’ll be walking a lot. You’ll be exerting physical and mental energy for a few days while you take in the whole experience. Staying hydrated is the best way to keep yourself feeling 10/10. If you’re able, bring a reusable water bottle. Many events are going green.

2. Bring comfortable shoes. If you’re headed to Content Marketing World/Marketing Analytics and Data Science this week, the convention center is 2.3 million square feet. You will want your feet to be comfortable. Protip – bring bandaids for your blisters that will inevitably happen too.

3. Bring a light jacket or raincoat. It has rained a lot this year. Record breaking amounts. Make sure you’re prepared for whatever the weather throws at you.

4. Bring a portable power strip and power banks. Outlets aren’t always nearby and you will burn down your phone battery being social. Want to make friends really easily? Be the person at the table that has power. To that, make sure you have all your charging cables and adapters.

5. Arrive with a burning question that you ask everyone you meet. What one question must you get answered in order for the conference to be worth it? If you don’t have a burning question, you’ll enjoy the show but you won’t get the most out of it.

6. Plan your sessions in advance. Got that burning question handy? There is no shortage of sessions that will get you excited and inspire new ideas. Make sure you pick out which sessions you want to attend before the event starts. Many events will have you pre-register for sessions and you don’t want to miss the ones you’re most excited for.

7. Party responsibly. The event planners have been working hard for a long time to make sure that you, the attendee, will have an amazing experience. This extends beyond the daytime sessions. There will be parties, networking, and other activities for you to participate in. Use the buddy system. If you’re travleing alone, ask to tag along with another group. Be sure to know your limits.

8. Bring earplugs. Events can be a sensory overload between the travel, the crowds, the sessions, and the parties. To give yourself a break, especially if you’re a light sleeper, bring a good pair of earplugs. A solid night of sleep will help keep you alert and healthy, allowing you to make the most of the event.

9. Make sure your contact information is up to date. Many events are incorporating your professional profile into their apps and scannable codes on your name badge. With all the connections you’ll be making, you’ll want to be sure that people can easily find you post-event.

10. Bring a day pack/bag. There will be times you won’t want to lug around heavy luggage or a full laptop case. A small messenger bag will fit the bill perfectly.

11. Bring healthcare preventative measures. Events will attract thousands of physical attendees who eat together, stay in the hotels, party together, shake hands, and share the same air, water, and physical proximity. Bring hand sanitizer packs, wash your hands frequently, and mask up, especially if you’re arriving by airplane or other form of mass transit. Consult your physician/qualified medical practitioner about taking a multivitamin and/or other immune-boosting supplements.

At the end of the day, you’re going to an event to make the most of it, not to hide in your hotel room. Get out there. Meet new people. Learn all the things. But don’t forget to take care of yourself. Take breaks from the crowds when you need to. Keep you water bottle full. Bring snacks. And most of all, enjoy it!

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