Not so long ago, conferences were among the most popular and effective sourcing opportunities for dealmakers. Trade shows were perfect for packing a lot of research and meetings into just a few days.
Then, COVID-19 hit. One minute dealmakers were shaking hands in expo halls, and the next they were dialing into Zoom meetings from home offices. Firms couldn’t wait for things to go back to “normal.”
But the pandemic taught us that while there’s no substitute for the power of human connection, technology and data have advanced to a point where they can help operationalize other key parts of dealmaking to enhance efficiency, accelerate deal flow, improve conversion rates, and maximize deal value.
And now that trade shows are reappearing on the calendar, new school dealmakers are embracing a new normal that harnesses the “science” of tools like SourceScrub to enhance the “art” of building personal relationships at conferences.
Taking this hybrid approach allows firms to optimize their post-COVID conference strategies in 3 highly impactful ways.
#1: Attending Only the Highest Value Conferences
In the past, sourcing deals from conferences meant firms had to attend every big show and talk to as many people as possible, or risk missing out on key opportunities. But how many of these conversations actually turned into transactions?
By leveraging the latest technology, modern firms can pinpoint which shows will have the highest concentration of relevant companies before they attend. It’s even possible to discover and prioritize smaller, lesser-known conferences where top targets plan to go, enabling firms to get the more ROI from travel time and budgets.
#2: Making the Most of Every Mile
Eighteen months of meeting with and learning about companies over Zoom makes travelling five hours to share a boxed trade show lunch with an early-stage prospect feel excessive. It’s important that firms make conference travel a truly worthwhile endeavor.
New school firms like LFM Capital use data services to identify companies in specific zip codes and then score them by thesis alignment. This way, dealmakers can make the most of conference travel by scheduling off-site meetings or happy hours with highly relevant opportunities while they’re in town.
#3: Booking More Meetings with the Right People
Identifying companies you want to meet at a trade show is only half the battle. How can you make sure you stand out from the dozens of other dealmakers vying for founders’ trade show time — time that they would rather spend with their own potential customers?
SourceScrub solves the first part of this problem by providing firms with highly accurate executive contact information, even for non-transacted companies. It also automatically surfaces hundreds of data points dealmakers can use to personalize pre-conference outreach and in-person conversations, saving firms hours of research and helping them stand out from the competition.
Back to Conference Season
Conference season is back and the number of scheduled trade shows is on the rise. But conference networking is unpredictable. Making the right connections is often an expensive game of chance.
That’s why modern firms are taking everything they learned over the last 18 months and establishing a hybrid approach to their post-COVID conference strategies — one that marries the art and the science of dealmaking. Learn how your firm can get more out of conferences this season and beyond when you download our free guide: How Modern Dealmakers Use SourceScrub to Build Smarter Post-COVID Conference Strategies.