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Investment banking tactics and strategy continue to evolve rapidly, but amidst this change, one constant remains: tradeshows play an indispensable role in deal sourcing. There’s no better way to maximize your company’s deal flow than networking with potential clients in-person.
However, capitalizing on deal origination at conferences in any market isn’t just about what you do at the conference itself—it’s the steps you take to prepare beforehand.
Read on to learn how to optimize your deal origination efforts at conferences before you arrive at the event, from effective preparation to utilizing an M&A platform.
Know Your Goals and Prioritize Your Time Accordingly
Most conferences feature a packed schedule with a variety of events. If you’re not careful, you can easily wear yourself out in an endless cycle going from one presentation and networking opportunity to the next.
To increase the effectiveness of your attendance, head into every conference with a full understanding of your goals and make decisions accordingly. Ask yourself:
- What am I trying to accomplish? Do I want to meet new potential clients or further nurture existing relationships to drive investment opportunities?
- Which potential clients will be in attendance that I should schedule meetings with?
- How many and which companies within the industry sector will also be there?
- What kind of opportunities can I create to schedule meetings or get in front of key stakeholders?
Knowing the answers to these important questions will help elucidate which industry events are can’t-miss opportunities and which you can skip.
Study the Attendance List and Agenda
Make sure you get a hold of the conference attendance list and agenda prior to the event, and learn it inside and out. Doing due diligence on who will be in attendance, where they will be, and when they’ll be there is essential to ensure you’re in the right place at the right time to further your origination opportunities.
The majority of conference lists will be published publicly, however combing through public lists isn’t always the most effective method for your team to help determine the right targets. There are now tools such as SourceScrub that have been created to streamline these efforts. In the SourceScrub platform, users can find pre-scrubbed conference lists to help them sift through key details of companies that will be in attendance and identify their targets more quickly.
If you’re attending with a team, ensure everyone has the conference agenda and clearly understands the team’s goals. When your team is aligned on strategy, you’ll be able to cover more ground. When you’re not, you’ll end up with multiple members of your team showing up at an event that wasn’t priority to attend or missing opportunities to meet with the right targets.
Let SourceScrub do the Heavy Lifting for You!
As mentioned, unfortunately, conference lists aren’t in any way tailored to you and your goals. Trying to decipher which conferences your target companies will attend can be difficult and time-consuming.
That’s where SourceScrub comes in. A deal origination platform that has jumpstarted deal flow for M&A professionals, SourceScrub helps you capitalize on your attendance at conferences in several ways, including:
- Fully Scrubbed Exhibitor Lists – SourceScrub employs data scrubbing tools that give you access to profiled-out participant lists for thousands of domestic and international events, helping you save significant time in researching which conferences you should attend in a given industry.
- Personalized Filters – With SourceScrub, you can choose which companies you want to track and access pertinent private company information, including details on business growth, recent transaction information and employee count.
- Similar Target Alerts – In addition to helping you tag private companies of interest, the information in SourceScrub also guides you toward similar businesses in the industry that you may want to consider targeting in your sourcing.
- Geolocale Searches – You can also optimize your travel by using the platform to search for other conferences within range of a given city. This process may help you uncover opportunities amidst your sourcing efforts you didn’t know existed.
No matter who’s in attendance, all conferences are going to cost you a considerable amount of money. Even if the event is taking place in your own neck of the woods and doesn’t require you to book a flight, you’ll still have to pay for conference registration as well as your hotel and accommodations. You’re also taking valuable time out of your schedule.
Knowing your goals and using efficient M&A tools to help you and your analyst team accurately prepare for a tradeshow can help ensure a return on that investment. Determine an effective strategy for conference attendance via intentional preparation so you can make the most of your time and increase investment opportunities key to strong deal flow.
- Baldelomar, Raquel. “Four Tips To Help You Maximize Your Time At Business Conferences.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 1 Mar. 2017, www.forbes.com/sites/raquelbaldelomar/2017/02/28/dread-going-to-conferences-here-are-4-tips-to-help-you-make-the-most-of-your-time/#26d6cb375ab8.
- DeChesare, Brian. “Bottles and Bottles? How You Really Win Clients and Land Mega-Deals as an Investment Banker.” Mergers Inquisitions, www.mergersandinquisitions.com/win-investment-banking-deals/.
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