Ever been to a virtual conference to discover self-employed composing potential customers?
When COVID-19 started shutting down in-person meetings, service networking events, industry trainings, and tradeshows, virtual conference options began popping up a lot more.
For instance, you do not need to find and pack several clothing for the occasion, capture an aircraft, and even drive anywhere.
Wish to discover how to get freelance work by participating in a virtual conference? Heres what you require to know.
If youre a work-from-home freelancer or still have a day job while you freelance part time, the virtual conference design can conserve you money and time.
Way back in early 2019, you might go to in-person events and conferences to network and fulfill potential freelance composing prospects.
However how does going to a virtual conference work for freelancers?
Do you simply sit there and listen to talking heads?
Exists some method to turn your time and investment in participating in a virtual conference (theres free and paid conferences) to connect with possible prospects and land tasks?
Going to a virtual conference can be a terrific method to network. It can also end up being aggravating and frustrating if you dont have a plan. You can feel like you are circling the drain.
When I decided to provide the virtual conference a shot as a freelancer, I attended 3 events throughout a two-week duration. How did it go? I made over 1,000 connections, scored 15 hot leads, landed two paid tasks, with the potential for more work.
Virtual conference networking: A new method to discover independent clients
Marie Sultana Robinson
If you desire to come away from a virtual conference with leads and potential customers, there are some methods BEFORE, DURING, and AFTER that you need to make it an effective success.
You can stay at home with your feline, and even do laundry, like I did.
Your objective: Get as many contacts (particularly contacts in your composing niche) as possible.
This brand-new kind of networking is simpler, and harder. One of the big advantages … no travel. No flight across the country, hotel appointments, or other expenditures.
During my two-week virtual conference experiment, I went to:
An online service conference that was attended worldwide
The regional chamber conference
A women-in-business gala
All of these events had webinars, breakout sessions, and pre-recorded webinars. And it was completely worth it.
So how do you turn a virtual conference into a lead-generating maker for freelance work?
Prior to we enter into the details, you need to be on LinkedIn. I use this platform as my main type of communication for networking. Its essential for reaching more people when you attend a virtual conference, too.
All set to turn a virtual conference into a lead-generating maker? Heres the 19 actions I used to get outcomes.
1. Start networking prior to you go
As quickly as you can access a website for your virtual conference, start the procedure of networking and preparing.
Have a look at the line-up of speakers and speakers
Connect with them on LinkedIn, and include an individualized message
2. Do this for one-day conferences
For meetings, like a Chamber of Commerce conference or local business networking occasion:
Wait till the day of the occasion to link with people
At a glance, you might believe somebody would not be excellent freelance composing customer, however they may know somebody who needs your aid.
Go to the conference, focus on whos there. Connect afterwards.
3. Get knowledgeable about the virtual conference platform
Every virtual conference is hosted on some type of platform. It could be as basic as Zoom calls and breakout rooms.
Figure out what sort of platform your virtual conference will be using.
For one conference I attended, Whova.com was used. There are at least 2 dozen significant virtual conference platforms and all work a bit in a different way.
Next, go to the platform BEFORE the conference and discover how to navigate. This can be a black-hole time sucker, so set a timer for 15 minutes, and get the fundamentals down, like:
Where are the chat spaces, or neighborhood?
Where is the program?
4. Purchase the additional time
From some virtual conference events, theres typically an additional nominal cost to get extended access (a month or in eternity) to:
This is a wise financial investment. It purchases you time and makes it simpler to go back through the occasion to get information about participants and information you might utilize in future short articles.
Tape-recorded breakout sessions
List of guests, suppliers, speakers
5. Link with the virtual conference speakers/presenters
I like to jot down all the speakers on a sheet of paper … prior to the event.
Why? By doing this I can set it on one side of my computer system, and when Im on hold for something else like my physicians workplace, I can spend the time on LinkedIn connecting. Heres the process I utilize:
Find them on LinkedIn. Use the search field, key in their name, and choose individuals outcomes.
Put a star next to a really important contact.
Send a connection request with a tailored message. Keep it basic, like:
I observed youre one of the speakers and would like to link. Your First Name]
If you cant find a speaker/presenter on LinkedIn, examine the virtual conference website for their contact information, or see if the speaker has their own website. Then send a customized e-mail comparable to the message above.
You might desire to consider paying for LinkedIn Premium, because it makes it a lot simpler to connect with as many individuals as possible.
Some additional tips for getting in touch with speakers
Getting in touch with virtual conference speakers is one of the finest methods to grow your network. Why? Many of the speakers and speakers already have huge network and following you can take advantage of.
I mention this in your message if the speaker is somebody I have a mutual connection with.
Discuss it specifically if theres something your looking forward to learning about from this person.
When they accept your connection welcome, send a quick thank you reply.
6. Prepare to be on cam
By now youve probably been to a Zoom conference where theres:
Idea: Personally, I go on cam mode ahead of time to see what looks best for me. And I put out my Zoom clothes the day prior to the occasion.
And you do not want to be that person. Looks count. Be your finest. Plan ahead and get your outfits, background, lighting, and makeup (if you wear it), right.
Somebody consuming a sandwich
Looks like they just crawled out of bed with their hair holding up, or
The lighting is so bad, they look a little demonic
7. Plan ahead for snacks/meals
Strategy ahead for meals and snacks. At standard in-person occasions, breaking for lunch or treats would belong to the program. At a virtual conference, youre probably going to be at home.
Make your life simple and prepare your meals and snack ahead of time.
Make sandwiches and put them in the refrigerator.
Put some soup in a sluggish cooker
Snack on nuts and fruit.
Brew a stern pot of coffee or tea
8. Create your virtual conference strategy
Plan what sessions you will go to and most notably … why. Knowing the why is essential.
Is it the topic?
Is it a live event with a chat?
Will you get to ask the speaker concerns?
Is the speaker someone you really want to gain from?
Pointer: In the middle of conference frenzy you can get overwhelmed. So do not try to do this at the last minute, the day of, or simply as the conference starts. For instance:
Among the conferences I attended was an international occasion, and had guests from Dubai to Hawaii. The earliest workshop was 4 a.m. The most current group chat was 11 p.m. Those can produce grueling hours.
Look at the agenda and pick ahead of time.
Attend what is most important to you, not always what is touted as the most glitzy or best.
Know what you need.
9. Limitation work/distractions during the conference
If it is a conference of more than two days, limitation work. You wish to be able to focus on the conference. That may imply:
Working ahead to fulfill your present customer deadlines
Investing extra time on marketing prior to and after hours
Organizing childcare so you can be present throughout the conference without diversions
10. Set objectives for what you wish to get out of the conference
This is a step that a lot of people ignore. Ive discovered throughout the years participating in numerous conferences, that it was a make or break sort of deal. Prior to you go answer this question:
” What do I require this occasion to do for my profession?”
Heres what I advise:
List 3 things you want to accomplish
Write them down, and put them by your computer system, your bed, your refrigerator. Some examples:
Suggestion: Knowing what you wish to get out of an occasion makes a substantial distinction. Having those 3 objectives jotted down and by your screen will assist you keep your eye on the prize.
Get in touch with someone at company X you desire to write for
Discover some aspect of service that will enhance your writing
Get details on the most recent developments in your niche
Make 5 connections in your specific niche
11. Be an active individual
At a great deal of virtual conference occasions, its simple to be a fly on the wall, a quiet observer. Thats not how youre going to make connections, grow your network, or accomplish the objectives you set.
Be an active individual, like this:
The point is to be active and be seen.
Ask questions throughout Q&A periods
Speak up and participate throughout breakout sessions
Make comments in the chat
Do it if it makes sense to share a link or resource
12. Use this Zoom technique to stand out
Theres a small dropdown menu in the upper right corner of your picture. It states Rename..
Instead of the default that reveals your name, use this feature. I use: Marie– Content Writer. It lets someone understand my name, and what I do.
Fun fact: Ive had several individuals call me before I contacted them, by doing this. Ive even scored some freelance writing jobs simply by sticking out in this manner during a virtual conference.
When youre in a Zoom conference, big or small, you can rename yourself. Use this technique to stand out as a freelance author.
13. Attend live workshops.
My idea: Buy into the ability to see the workshops for a month. By doing this, the only workshops you require to go to are the live ones. And you can view the documented ones, or workshops you missed out on later on.
For a multi-day conference, there are typically live workshops, and tape-recorded ones, that drop at the suitable time.
14. Get involved in forums.
Searching for writing-related topics you can weigh in on and provide advice.
Many conferences consist of a forum, neighborhood board, or Facebook group to continue discussions and networking. Its an excellent location to engage with the speakers and guests. And you can stand out by:.
15. Come prepared with an elevator speech.
Print out elevator speech.
Post it near the cam aperture of your computer system.
When you read it, youre taking a look at the camera, and in a sense, the other people.
Suggestion: In these breakout sessions, write down names of the people attending. After the conference, link with them on LinkedIn. If there was a standout remark or we had a conversation, constantly discuss it to personalize the connection welcome.
] Anxious about what to say? Do THIS:.
Hi. Im a freelance writer.
A great deal of conferences like to include breakout sessions during the event.
Basically, a little group of participants move to a virtual breakout room. If youre prepared, and its a substantial networking chance.
In these small breakout sessions, you frequently get the chance to offer a couple of minute elevator speech. For example:.
16. Signing out: Be a gracious participant.
At a few of the conferences theres an ending session, that is a formal wrap-up and farewell.
This is a time to put in the chat that its been a terrific experience and hope to see everybody on LinkedIn.
17. Digest your conference experience.
First, youll most likely want to take a break from conference mania for a day or more.
How many people did you get in touch with?
Are there any warm leads to act on?
Was it worth your time and investment (if you paid a cost)?
Would you go to the conference again, why?
After that, assess your experience:.
18. Make connections & & send out LOIs.
Go through your list once again. Make connections, and state “Hello,” in addition to something cheerful and appropriate to those contacts you want to make much deeper connections with.
Compliment the speakers on their talks, discussions, or lectures.
As soon as the conference is over, the genuine work starts:.
Send out LOIs (letter of intro) to individuals you wish to write for. A few of the participants might not be in a position to employ you. They might work for a large company you do want to work for. If they can present you to the marketing supervisor or CEO, message that person and ask them.
19. Be kind to yourself.
Marie Sultana Robinson is a freelance author based in Connecticut. She writes for customers about manufacturing, construction, and genuine estate..
Theres a lot more to going to a virtual conference than simply appearing. The best conference can potentially connect you with hundreds of people, IF youre willing to do the work.
COVID-19 restrictions are likely to keep in-person conferences and occasions on lockdown for a little bit longer. But virtual conferences can be a terrific method to grow your network and land more freelance writing customers.
Sometimes theres quick wins and tasks. Other times its a lengthy process to begin seeing the results of your efforts. Be kind to yourself as you find out and browse the procedure.
Connecting with virtual conference speakers is one of the best methods to grow your network. At a virtual conference, youre probably going to be at home.
Use virtual conferences to land more freelance composing customers.
When I decided to provide the virtual conference a try as a freelancer, I attended three events during a two-week duration. Participating in a virtual conference can be a fantastic method to network. Its important for reaching more people when you attend a virtual conference, too.
Have you went to a virtual conference to get self-employed customers? Tell us about it in the comments.