The Voice Over International Creative Experience (aka The Voice Convention 2014) happens every two years and brings out some of voiceovers biggest stars. With a convention that only happens bi-annually, its important that not a moment of your time is wasted. Its exciting to see all of your voiceover friends, colleagues and idols all in one place. The VOICE is a place where you can exchange ideas, build relationships, buy products and expand your business potential. But you have to have a strategy for before, during and after the convention.
Before The VOICE
Determine why you decided to go to begin with. Everything that you do from this point should be focused on your reasons to attend. You wanted to get something out of it when you paid your registration fee. From that point on every conversation you have, every laugh, every question should be focused on your objective. Of course you should always be your genuine self, but remember that you could have also been your genuine self and saved 600 bucks by staying home
Bring Business Cards. But also plan to collect business cards. Download an app to your phone like Card To Connect on Google Play or the Apple App Store.
Plan out your moves. With so many presentations and panels in one place, its hard to keep track. But with a little research online, you can figure out who is important for you to see. The VOICE provides a schedule online that you can print. Print it and mark it up. Hand Out Your Cards. Make sure people remember the card and the face associated with. Mark all of the cards that you receive with notes indicating the level of importance it is to stay in contact with that person. Then Stay in contact.
During The VOICE
Use your listening skills. Every conversation made in public is meant for you to hear and gain information from. Every question and every answer is relevant. There are tons of resources that even the most seasoned voiceover veteran is not aware of. Take notes. Stick around till the end of every panel discussion and ask more questions and listen to the questions that other attendees have for presenters.
Attend all of the events. The VOICE has a lot of events that happen during the convention but I find that some of the best times to network is after everyone is just hanging out. Go hang out. Be social. Take a moment to find out more about people than just their last voiceover booking. You’ll find yourself among some of the nicest professionals anywhere. Have a good time. Take pictures and tweet them out to the world.
After The VOICE
Follow Up. Have a system in place before the VOICE so that when you get back home you can email people and keep in touch. Consider Constant Contact, Mail Chip or Fanbridge as way to send updates. Follow everyone you’ve met on social media. Share the pics you’ve taken with them. Remember the VOICE as a fun yet productive time. Revisit your objective and stay in tune with it throughout the days, weeks and month following the convention.
I’ve been involved in conventions with my dad most of my life and have seen how these techniques can be used at any convention. I have yet another (non voiceover) convention to attend in a few weeks where I will following my own advice. Good Luck at the VOICE and I will see many of you in Atlanta in 2015.
To Find More Of My Networking Techniques Check Out My Blog And Video On “Networking For Voiceover”
Voiceover Talent available at DaneReidMedia.com