How to Make Your Next Conference an Insanely Useful Experience

Note from Corbett: This post is by Caleb Wojcik of Pocket Changed. Caleb recently joined our team and I’d like to formally welcome him as the new Assistant Editor of Think Traffic. He was a model student from the first class of Traffic School and it is great to have him aboard!

Please say hello and welcome Caleb in the comments below.

Your next in-person conference could be a life- or business-changing experience. I’ll show you how my last conference led to some amazing opportunities and how you can make sure your next conference does too.

Whether you are forced to go to a convention for work, go for a hobby you like to “geek out” on, or because it is for a good cause that you care about, they can go one of two ways:

  • They can be boring affairs filled with never-ending presentations, stale conversations, countless looks to the clock, and bad coffee.
  • They can be inspiring and creative idea starters with attendees that have a contagious energy-boosting aura surrounding them.

I went to the former kind of conference for work and it was mostly a forgettable event. I approached my second conference differently because it was the World Domination Summit, hosted by Chris Guillebeau, and it turned out to be the latter.

The main difference between WDS and other conferences I had been to before was in the genuine connections you could make with people. Business cards were an afterthought. The person, their aspirations, and their story mattered more than any job title they held.

But even if an event is filled with A-List speakers, energetic Gen Y’ers, and breakout sessions that interest you, that doesn’t mean that it will automatically make a noticeable difference in your website, business, or life.

And if your conference turns out to be one of those boring clock-checking affairs, you can still get a lot out of it with a little planning and creativity.

My last conference led to working with several new clients, landing this new role I just started with Think Traffic and much more. Here’s what you can do to make sure your next conference is an insanely useful experience:
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