Here are our top 10 tips for getting the most for your money when attending an events industry conference:
Buy your ticket and/or register early. For most wedding industry conferences, prices go up as the conference gets closer. If you end up not being able to attend, you can usually transfer your ticket to someone else or push your attendance out a year. Check the rules to be sure of the cancellation and transfer ticket policy.
When choosing a hotel for your stay during the conference, try to stay at the hotel where the conference is or stay within walking distance. This saves you time and hassle of commuting and may save you from having to rent a car.
Wear comfortable shoes. Many times, the meeting rooms are spread out, especially for conferences such as the Wedding MBA in Las Vegas.
Bring a sweater! Although it may be hot outside, it can be cold inside conference rooms.
If you can, find a conference buddy. There are tons of great sessions at the larger conferences such as at The Special Event Show. You cannot attend them all, but you and your buddy can split up the class schedule and share your notes with each other after the conference.
If you go to a session and do not like it, do not feel bad about getting up and leaving. You need to get the most out of the conference you are attending.
Take advantage of the speaker’s knowledge if possible. After each session, the speaker may be around to answer any questions you have. Feel free to introduce yourself and chat.
Make sure to visit the convention booths and/or trade show. It is a good chance to speak one-on-one with many of the speakers and to learn more about businesses that may help grow your business. Also, many booth exhibitors run specials just for conference attendees. If you choose to purchase anything it will probably be cheaper during the conference.
Network! Conferences are a great place to connect with other wedding professionals who are not your direct geographic competition. You can exchange ideas without the worry of competing for the same clients.
Take advantage of the after-hours parties and events. For example, at the Wedding MBA, many of the bigger companies like The Knot and Wedding Wire rent out some of the swankiest Las Vegas nightclubs. It is a great chance to check out some of these hard-to-get-into locations.
Today’s post is a guest post from Amber Peterson. Amber is the owner of Cheers Wedding & Event Planning in western Washington. She has a Masters Degree in Integrated Marketing Communications and previously worked as a marketing consultant for wedding industry professionals. Amber is also the co-founder of the Skagit Wedding Society.