20 simple ways to make the most of the Web Summit #prewebsummit #2

  1. People from other countries don’t put themselves down and they don’t think it’s funny when we do it. Don’t do it. No one from outside of Ireland and the UK gets the joke. Just stop.
  2. Be positive. No one wants to hear your sarky take on why everything’s rubbish. They want optimism, possibility and excitement.
  3. To paraphrase the mighty Paul Hayes. People don’t remember what you said, they remember how you made them feel. Don’t agonise over every syllable – be yourself and spread good vibes.
  4. Know who you’re targeting but be open to all. Conferences are about selling. Focus on your vertical but don’t stick to it. 
  5. Have a brief answer ready when people ask what do you do. Stay positive. Put best foot forward. Act like a winner.
  6. Be a conversation starter. The best conference advice I ever received from the great Brian Zisk. Just walk up to people with hand outstretched and say “Hi, what brings you here?’
  7. Listen. You know what you think already. Soak it up. Learn.
  8. Have business cards ready and exchange them as a way to end a conversation if needs be.
  9. Don’t feel you have to hang out with someone all day/night just because you’re talking. They want to meet loads of people too. 
  10. Give people plenty of opportunity to get rid of you and don’t get offended if they do.
  11. A brief friendly exchange is enough to have a basis for follow up. Once someone gives you their card that’s all you need to follow up with an email. 
  12. Be memorable so you have something to trigger someone’s memory when you mail them a year later.
  13. Act as if you’ve left Dublin for the three days (if you’re based here). Clear your schedule. Dive in. Go for it.
  14. Share knowledge, contacts, party info, tips. Give, give, give.
  15. Say yes to everything.
  16. Don’t be negative.
  17. Have an answer ready when people ask where the nearest great Irish pub is.
  18. Even if you think The Web Summit leaving Dublin is an awful thing – stay positive.
  19. Use Twitter to welcome people to Ireland that you’d like to meet.
  20. Play the local advantage – we are all hosts!

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