The Introvert’s Guide to Attending Conferences (Without Falling Apart)

Despite the fact that I talk a mile a minute and love a good gathering, I am an introvert.

Young woman covering her eyes

Working at home, it’s not such a big deal. Attending conferences, like Social Media Marketing World, which I attended a few weeks ago? Well, that’s another matter entirely.

What Exactly is an Introvert?

For those of you extroverts who don’t understand what the other side of the coin looks like, let me break it down simply:

Introverts are easily drained when around lots of people for long periods of time.

My husband is an introvert. He’d rather snarl alone from inside his dank, dusty cave than go to a party. I swear, he’s rubbed off on me. And while I love being around my friends, after a big event, I’m knackered.

So why would I put myself in the position of being around thousands of strangers — much less volunteering as Event Staff and talking to most of those strangers, you ask?

I’m a sucker. No, of course not! I couldn’t let such a good opportunity pass me by to meet influencers in my industry and network for potential business. Now I’ll share my secrets to survival with you.

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Why A Good Business Reputation Is Essential To Good Marketing

When it comes to selling your brand (or yourself) one’s reputation is absolutely essential. When companies (or their leaders) forfeit their goodwill, they turn people away who would have otherwise been responsive to their efforts.

The word Brand under a magnifying glass illustrating marketing a The word Brand under a magnifying glass illustrating marketing and advertising to build customer loyalty and reputation

Examples come in many forms, from traditional advertising to word-of-mouth. Most importantly, though, one’s reputation has a lot more to do with current customers than former ones. A lot of online forums like OpenTell provide a place for people to voice their opinions, and you can view real reviews from real customers and decide if a certain company is worth your time and money.

Losing Current Customers

Getting new customers is hard enough. What can be more difficult is retaining a customer who has had a bad experience.

This tends to occur when a business’ leadership or philosophy changes. For example, if a company once prided itself on quality, but now focuses on cost, the demographic of customers will change significantly, and the cost to market this new message can rise significantly. With the shift of loyalty to cost over quality, customer loyalty (or engagement) will shift to a proprietor that matches their same values.

This also applies to companies that shift their focus from superior customer service to being the most high-tech.

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Death by PowerPoint: the Advantages of Interactive Presentations

We’ve all been there at some point in our lives. Feeling every ounce of energy slowly being sucked out by listening to somebody drone along to a PowerPoint presentation.

“How many slides are there?”

“Twenty. Wait, let me squint. Oh no there are forty.”

This is the cue to pull out your phone and refresh Instagram thirty times or make several trips to the bathroom. In fact, a study by Indiana University revealed that the average adult pays attention for about 15 to 20 minutes before their mind begins to wander. This is when your audience start to sport a glazed look. A study by MCI also showed that 39% of listeners at business presentations admitted to falling asleep at some point.  We’ve all witnessed someone take a quick nap.

Four businesspeople in boardroom with one businessman sleeping

The whole point of presenting is to make meaning and it’s true that passion leads to attention which then leads to action. This cannot be achieved when your audience is severely disconnected because your slides are crammed full of texts and charts or because you are speaking at them. Audience interaction is key to success.

There is technology now available that enables audience interaction. They usually sport great visual aids to enrich what you are talking about. Business presentation software is designed to provide animated and exciting presentations with the aim to capture the audience’s attention. Use visual mind maps and ask questions to turn dull slides into a dynamic user experience.

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How To Know When It’s Time To Take A Break From Your Biz

You, like most business owners, work hard to run your business. Maybe too hard, at times. Here are signs that you might need to step away from your business, even briefly, so that you come back refreshed and rejuvenated.

 businessman with papres, laptop and calculator

1. You’re Frustrated. Little things set you off, like a shipment being late, or a client’s tardiness in replying to your email. You spend more time being annoyed by the day-to-day intricacies of your business than being enamored by them.

2. The Magic is Gone. Despite the fact that, up until recently, you were passionate about what you do for a living, now it feels like drudgery.

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