When you’re a tech blogger, you can’t afford to miss the infamous pre-conference meet-ups. Those are the ideal places to meet start-ups and influentials who can tell you the latest about developments in the web industry. Moreover, if your blog isn’t all too famous yet, meet-ups are perfect for getting the word out. So how can you make the most of these events?
Boris and me are in San Francisco for the Web 2.0 Expo and are visiting a lot of these meet-ups, here’s what I’ve learned so far.
1. Bring something to remember you by
When you’re at a meet-up, you’re likely to shake at least twenty hands. That means lots of names, companies and groundbreaking technologies in a short time. So you tend to forget most. And you’re not alone. Thus it pays of to bring something with you that you can hand out. People will come home, empty their pockets, skip through all the business cards, and then see your funny gimmick. They’ll love it!
2. Look remarkable
For the same reason as no. 1. You might find inspiration in our white suits.
3. Make pictures and publish them right-a-way
As you can tell by the last paragraph of tip 1 – the link to the Laughingsquid photo page – , making pictures also is a good way to get people to remember you. So give your buddy a camera, lay your arm over somebody’s shoulder and cherish the snapshot on your Flickr page. Tag the pics accordingly with the names of the subjects and consider writing them a line saying that you’ve published a picture with their face on it.
We also decided to include them in our blog posts to give it a personal touch. So when people ask us to write about the start-up, we say: “Maybe! But we need a picture first”.
4. Take advantage of web celebs (no, not in that way!)
As long as you’re not a web celeb yourself, you might as well profit from other people’s fame. Especially here in San Francisco, there’s a culture of worshiping some successful entrepreneurs and bloggers. The success of dirty gossip blog Valleywag is just one example of that. You can do it the nice way, or the dirty Valleywag-like one. Boris and me, naturally, choose for the friendly way and smooth talked our way into the small circles of famous techies. Pitch your blog, and they might even take a look. Don’t worry about being too pushy, since these guys are used to people who want their attention and trust me, there a lot of rude people out there. So if you approach them in a friendly way, they could be pleasantly surprised.
5. Blog about it…
People love to relive the moment. So write some good, extensive, short ‘n’ sweet or sentimental – as long as it’s remarkable – posts about the meet-ups and publish them as soon as possible. Link to the blogs and sites of attendants to make sure they’ll notice your writings. Have a look at our altsearchengines meeting coverage to see how we do it.
Hope this posts helps you to make the most out of those meet-ups. If you have any tips about how you stand out from the crowd, I’d love to hear those from you. For now, let me conclude with the two most important tips: have fun and don’t get too drunk. Cheers!