If you’re an Amazon seller or just thinking about becoming one, chances are you’ve at least thought about going to a conference or two. Whether it’s a small Meetup or a three day event with 2000+ sellers, there is no shortage of online seller events taking place across the country.
Conferences not only provide sellers with the opportunity to learn something new and gain an outside perspective, they also give marketplace sellers the rare chance to get out of the house and network. While there are a ton of benefits to working from home, socializing with like-minded people isn’t one of them. So events and conferences are fun and efficient ways to fill that void as you continue to develop as a seller. In order to help you maximize your time at your next seller conference, we came up with a list of five key tips for sellers looking to get the most out of their next conference.
1. Sit with Different People Each Day
People are creatures of habit and marketplace sellers are no exception. When you go to a conference or similar event, it’s easy to stick with one person or small group of people or sit at the same table the entire time. While it can be comforting to already know someone there and to have a friendly group to sit with, if you’re only socializing with a select group, you miss out on meeting new people and gaining different perspectives which is what going to a conference is all about.
Next time you attend a conference, get out of your comfort zone and fight your instinct to sit with the same crew or in the same place. It might feel awkward at first, but once you’ve done it, you’ll be happy you did. Chances are you’ll meet amazing new people who end up being great resources for your business who you normally would not have met.
Pro Tip: Don’t leave or go back to your room as soon as the conference is over. Some of the best networking happens in the lobby or at the bar. By then the pressure is off because people aren’t worrying about their upcoming speech or what session they have to go to next. If you hang around chances are you’ll make even deeper connections.
2. Chat with the Sponsors
We admit that we do have some bias as we have sponsored several marketplace seller conferences. However, the people behind the sponsor booths work with sellers all day and every day. So they too will be able to give you genuine advice and a valuable perspective on your business. If you’re worried about a hard sell or pushy salespeople, don’t be. While growing your business is the end game for anyone attending a conference, sponsors aren’t there to act as used car salesmen. They are there to network and get to know their customer base better.
Most sponsors are there to answer your questions if you have them, not to push you into buying an expensive product your business doesn’t need. So take some time to chat with them.
[Pictured Above: Account Executive Jack Howard and Marketing Manager Vicky Sullivan in the Mens Payability Men’s Fit Shirt and Womens Payability White Logo Women’s Fit Shirt]
3. Keep an Open Mind
No matter how successful you are as a seller, there’s always more you can learn. Even six and seven figure sellers are constantly finding new ways to grow their businesses even if it’s just by 0.5%. If you’re an expert on sponsored ads or inventory management, it can be tempting to skip that session. However, this may not be the best course of action. Take the time to attend every session even if you think you won’t learn anything. The world of eCommerce is constantly evolving so the amount of new information might surprise you. Besides every session is an opportunity to sit with new people and network.
4. Ask Questions
Conferences give sellers the opportunity to get face to face with the experts and get their questions answered. You came all the way there so don’t be shy when it comes time for the Q&A. Raise your hand and get your burning questions answered. Chances are others have the same question, but were too afraid to ask.
5. Follow Through
It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a conference and make promises that you don’t end up keeping. You might have meant what you said at the time, but once you get home and back into your normal routine the person you said you’d email or the consultant you wanted to hire falls by the wayside. Think before you make any promises and take the time to follow through, whether that’s via email, text or even Facebook. Connecting is key.
It’s not our thoughts or ideas that are bad. In fact, most are pretty great. It’s the lack of follow through that often holds even the brightest entrepreneurs back. So go for it. If a speaker really inspired you, go up to them and talk about how you can work together. If you actually did more of the things you talked about doing, chances are you’d be an even bigger seller.