At a conference, your head is spinning from the constant bombardment of information and meeting people. On top of this, you are continuing to respond to a variety of issues back at the office or home. It is very easy to miss some important insights that can help your business. Typically, follow up after an event is very poor. Hence, it is no surprise that results are limited.
How can you change this? Here is one idea to consider…
VARs and MSPs should set a post event action plan for every channel event that they attend. I know, it’s easier said than done, but try starting the process while you are at the event! Build a to-do list in your smart phone or computer. Some events like ChannelNEXT, design their printed conference guides for delegates to easily and quickly add notes and build an action plan! Every time you see a potential opportunity, enter it immediately into your to-do list and include contact information.
Better yet, you could start to take action in real-time by e-mailing contacts and delegating tasks to colleagues on the spot (Some easy things that you can do in real-time include: Follow tweeter accounts; Send tweets to your followers; Post to your social media; Add contacts to your LinkedIN; Visit and bookmark web sites; Request slide shows). There are many things that you can do while at the event that takes very little time and effort!
When you have some downtime, just reprioritize all of the main action items in your plan so you focus on the most important first. Share some action items with your colleagues so they can assist you in your follow up.
The key is to translate what you have learnt and seen at the event into actionable and manageable tasks. The faster that you leverage the knowledge and build partnerships with vendors from the event, the faster that you will reap the rewards.
Here is one example of a 20-step live action plan that a VAR or MSP could have done from a recent Channel event. Even if you did not attend the event, you can still leverage this action plan! Try it!
Title: ChannelNEXT East Action Plan 2015:
(Note: You could shorten the copy and remember to include dates and schedule tasks in you calendar):
1) www.varofficesuite.com bookmark/explore resource to improve my business. Take test to score my strengths and weaknesses. Use contact form to connect with the tools and services that I need. Review one tool or service every very week.
2) www.varcoach.com Subscribe. Review weekly summary tips. Forward to my team/get them to subscribe. Learn something every week!
3) Add LinkedIN “Julian Lee, TechnoPlanet”. Join LinkedIN group VARCOACH. Follow on twitter @echannelnews.com Do same for all contacts that I met at the show!
4) Review the upcoming webinars on www.vartrends.com Register my team for the ones that we want! Book in my calendar!
5) Check out the event videos on www.ecntv.tv. Could I leverage some video content to present the message to my customers? May need some editing to cut out the channel-related content! Ask how! Consider doing a company video for my web site! How can I leverage more video to help me market and sell?
6) Evaluate joining the VARCoach MasterMind group. It’s similar to a regular MasterMind group that exchanges ideas and support amongst its peers. New group adds an entire team of business experts in every field to get into the best-practices deeper and faster. It is like hiring a whole team of experts to help me throughout the year at a fraction the cost! Register at www.varmastermind.com to see if this could work for me!
7) Get my team (and a few customers) to review my web site (my most important digital marketing asset!). If we need professional help, contact http://varofficesuite.com/contact.php.
8) Review my CRM solution and sales process. Connect with Rick McCutcheon to improve. Check out www.frontrow-solutions.com for an effective CRM tool.
9) Review these Back-Up and Business Continuity providers: www.storagecraft.com, www.datto.com, www.intronis.com, www.maxfocus.com and www.efolder.net Find the right mix to offer. Consider switching from DropBox to efolder www.efolder.net. Book a demo and get my free too set at www.storagecraft.com
10) Review how we can leverage HP’s channel programs more! Looks like we are missing out on a lot of support and profits! Check out ibiz10’s Everything HP Web Store that I can customize to start marketing and selling everything HP! I can also add other product brands and services.
11) Check out MaxFocus/Logicnow www.logicnow.com. Maybe we can use their service ticketing module. Check out Autotask at www.autotask.com for full-service automation. Connect with Randal at www.itrevolution.ca for advice on getting up and running with Managed Service and RMM. The MaxFocus and Autotask communities can also be a great learning resource.
12) Review my clients that demand reliable Internet up-time and performance. Check out solution at www.kemptechnologies.com
13) More margins with Epson? Latest printer good for Managed Print Services. Projector doubles as a white board and recording tool – my clients could want this! Contact Mark and check out www.epson.com.
14) Review my accounting solution. Is it time to get a better solution? Check out www.hansaworld.com or www.dpdsoftware.ca with an entry-level solution of about $1,000. Can I also offer this to some of my clients as a referral to make some commissions?
15) Ground floor opportunity for IOT. Research the right solutions for my clients to reap some big financial rewards! www.intel.com Need to learn more about how we can leverage IOT for our clients!
16) Fix my social media! Talk to Marlene from www.brightbeamdigital.com to help me!
17) Explore doing a few B2B e-procurement portals with my top customers so they can place and check orders 24/7 in real-time. See how my sales reps can use to generate faster and more accurate e-quotes or check price and availability from multiple distributors in real-time. See if my purchaser can use this to save 90% of their time. Investigate how I can combine Cloud and Managed Services with hardware to make more money! Check out www.ibiz10.com and book a demo!
18) Check out CompTIA at www.comptia.org Join and get access to a lot white papers, research and business playbooks!
19) Get my team to subscribed to www.e-channelnews.com to receive summary of key IT news every day! Over 100 news articles each month! I must subscribe to receive the info!
20) Follow up all the contacts form the business cards that I received! Send back the event feedback survey to help the organizers improve. Connect with all on LinkedIn!
Once you have written down your action plan, it’s time to act. No problem if you fall behind. Just review again and get back on track. Keep on taking actions every day until you are satisfied with the end-result. You will generate more success from your channel events!