Slush is one of Europe’s leading startup events, founders and tech-talent meet with top investors, executives and media bringing together a strong international presence. Starting unofficially on the 29th of November with the Founder’s Day and then moving on to the actual two day event. The conference is full of great talks from interesting speakers that are sure to make Slush 2016 an event to remember!
SLUSH 2016 is 15 000 attendees, 2 days, 100+ and 18 hours of topics, five stages, 2000+ Startups, 800+ investors and 20 hours of official parties. Does this sound like your normal early December mid week at the office? The SLUSH conference itself is just for 2 days (30 Nov and 1 Dec), but with all the side events there is much more.
This is our fifth time at SLUSH so in addition to the hand-selected topics we like to share a few survival tips for startup conferences.
ONBOARD YOURSELF to SLUSH16 – PREPARE BEFORE THE EVENT.
To get the most out of the 2 (5-7) days, you have to be awake before the event. Get yourself familiar with the event and other attendees. Know who you want to meet and make the most to arrange an encounter. Our 3 tips before the event are:
- Be active on social media: Follow #slush16 and #slush -hashtags, tweet and post. See who’s coming, what they are talking about and let others to know that you’ll be there. Be active also during and after the event.
- Book meetings: The Slush Matchmaking tool works quite nicely. You can find startups and investors for a meeting and secure a Meeting area table for your preferred meeting time. If you don’t get a reply to your meeting request, follow up via email, LinkedIn and phone.
- Claim your badge: The queues for the badge claim has been quite long in previous years and the Finnish weather late November isn’t the best for standing outside in a line. The best option is to pick the badge before the event (See SLUSH Attendee info link below).
BE ACTIVE DURING SLUSH16 – MAKE THE MOST OUT OF YOUR TIME.
The event itself is only 9 hours a day. With 15 000 attendees and 18+ hours of topics it’s almost impossible to follow-up if you haven’t prepared your days. For every interaction, instead of selling, think how you’re able to help. Our 3 tips during the event are:
- Prepare your agenda: Check the agenda beforehand and pick the best topics for you. You probably anyhow miss some of your selected topics but when you have the extra 30min spare time you know easily where to go. (See Pilvi tips for the agenda link below)
- Prefer morning meetings: We’ve had our best meetings first in the morning between 8-10. Grab a cup of coffee, mingle around the demo booths and have a few pre booked meetings. Calm and easy start for the day.
- Be active with side events: There is a lot of things to do after the official agenda. Be active and search for the parties, talks, drinks, etc. around the area. And don’t forget the official parties on 29th, 30th and 1st. (See Slush Side events link below)
ENGAGE AFTER SLUSH16 – FOLLOW-UP AFTERWARDS.
After SLUSH it’s important to make most out of your new connections. During the event you probably met at least tens of new people and had 3 types of encounters: “Just exchanged Hi’s”, “had an interesting talk” and “resulted in meetings and follow-up afterwards”. In all the cases it’s important that you follow-up after the event. Our 3 tips after the event are:
- Connect on LinkedIn: Use LinkedIn as your business card. Send a connection request with a personalised message. Don’t forget to visit your new connections LinkedIn and Twitter accounts to see if there is something new to add to the agenda.
- Follow-up via email: Don’t forget to send the promised follow-up emails. The best time to send these is probably next week after the event. Give something valuable (attachment, link, blog) to the recipient.
- Book follow-up meetings: You probably didn’t have time to go through your whole pitch and presentation during the short talk or meeting during the event. Get more familiar with the people and companies you met at SLUSH and book a follow-up meeting with personalised agenda.
Looking forward to meet you at SLUSH. We’re there to help SaaS companies in online sales automation. Just contact us beforehand to fix a meeting or come to talk during the event.
Pilvi Hand-Selected topics for SLUSH16 – http://saas.pilvi.com/en/blog/hand-picked-topics-for-slush-2016/
Slush Attendee Info – http://www.slush.org/event/info/
Slush Side Events – http://www.slush.org/side_events/
Slush Matchmaking – https://matchmaking.slush.org/