I was surfing through Scott Jangro‘s new site, which had metamorphsized from his Affiliate Blog List into the BumpZee Affiliate Marketing community when I came across this ABestWeb Affiliate Marketing forum thread (Affiliate Summit Tips). [Which is a case that social networking sites DO generate a nice bit of traffic].
Here’s the pointers I found useful from the thread and from my experience at other trade shows:
- Before Affiliate Summit West
- Prepare lots of business cards: 500? 1,000? I guess you’d want to give out lots of cards and leverage on the opportunity to network with affiliate managers and fellow affiliates. Want to go off the beaten track? Check out Cost Per News Sam Harrelson’s Business Card Tag Thing.
- Pack Warm Clothing: Especially for those who us coming from Asia, I hear it gets pretty cold in the desert. That being said, I’ve walked around Texas in t-shirt and shorts in the middle of winter.
- Preserve Your Voice: Cough drops, lozenges, whatever it takes to ensure your voice last through the event. Although you’d be talking to a lot of people during the day, I’ve seen footage of people at after hours events which leaves no doubt as to the cause of their hoarse voice (A clue: It doesn’t have to do with talking to hundreds of people during the day.)
- Sleep: From what most seem to be saying, most won’t be sleeping much during ASW. Maybe not even at all. Deals are cut very early (about 4 or 5am seems to be the sweet spot).
- Bring Cash: Anecdotal evidence seems to suggest food around ASW will be prohibitive expensive. Although I’ve been to Vegas previously and had $5.99 prime rib at the Golden Nugget and $0.50 margaritas farther along the Strip. But then, if you’re a prime affiliate, I guess you’d be getting wined and dined not infrequently.
- Loose Change: On a related point, carry lots of small notes. Most service staff expect some sort of tip.
- Empty Luggage: You’d probably be collecting a lot of t-shirts, pens and all sorts of doodads, so I guess there’s a certain logic in coming with at least one empty bag to carry home your booty (Sounds like Halloween for adults, doesn’t it?)
- Comfortable Shoes: Blisters are not fun.
- At the Summit
- Getting from the Airport to the Hotels: Cabs cost $20 from the Airport to the Hotels. The shuttles cost around $5.
- Say Hi to Everyone: You’ve come all the way to the summit, say hi to everyone who looks friendly. That quiet guy standing in the corner might be a super affiliate. The affiliate manager at the smaller table might represent an up-and-coming affiliate network. In Vegas speak, spread your bets.
- Buddy Up: Meet up with people whom you’ve corresponded online, split up and cover different sessions if you can. Compare notes later. More importantly, introduce people you’ve met to each other, so you have a common pool of contacts. An exception might be the Shoemoney/Jon F-WickedFire session, I think everyone and his brother will be making a beeline for that.
- Bring Water: I hear water is as scarce in the casinos as it is in the desert (except for the firewater variety). Bring a small bottle, so you can talk even more.
- Measure Time: Time looks like the commodity in shortest supply. It might look like 3 days is a long time, but I’d prioritize the people and booths you’d like to visit first, so it’s mission accomplished. Else you might not be able to spend as much time talking to the people who would’ve given you the most leverage.
- Gum and Breath Mints: The people you’re talking to will be more receptive if they’re conscious as you’re talking to them. Ditto for deoderant.
- Pen and Paper: You might have a PDA photo or a photographic memory, but nothing beats writing stuff down. You might like to note down important facts on the back of someone’s business card for later reference.
- Las Vegas Discount Coupons: Here’s a especially useful tip if you’re coming in a group, there’s a discount coupon over at LasVegasAdvisor.com which contains discount coupons. See: here
Shawn Collins has mentioned that presentations for the various speakers will be made available to attendees. This is subject to the speaker’s consent. [Check out Shawn's sharp looking cards here: Got Your Business Cards for Affiliate Summit?]
Sam Harrelson and partner in crime, Wayne Porter, will be camping out in the Nevada desert (It’s flagged as the Lake Mead Recreation Area, but it still looks like desert on the map). I wonder if they have any wilderness survival tips.
Rumors are that PlanetAndrea will be stalking the showfloor to build the biggest business card collection at ASW. If you see her, hand her a business card.
One last thing I’m wondering (although I’m fairly certain) is that there is Internet access from the ASW exhibit or conference area, so I’ll file blogging reports on-site. Maybe Shawn can shed some light on this.