The Spirit of EntreFest! – Part One

The Spirit of EntreFest! – Part One

What a conference!

It’s been a week and a half since the fourth annual EntreFest! entrepreneur conference in Dubuque Iowa. Hats off to Amy Kuhlers and Courtney Schwitzer for their combined efforts in making sure the conference was a total success! The final count for attendance was 228 small business owners and 18 exhibitors.

I deeply appreciated how one entrepreneur seized the spirit of EntreFest! to capitalize on the conference to drive his sales.   I received the following e-mail on 2/21, a couple of days before the event:

I am really looking forward to meeting you at EntreFest this week and learning more about your organization.

Hoping you can take a few minutes to stop by our booth to pick up a free book, Traction, and sign up for a free 90-minute, life-changing business consulting session.

Stay focused….and see you there.

Troy Shoen
EOS Implementer

Riverhead Resources

3121 Dean Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50317
O: 515-263-0408
C: 515-954-5787
[email protected]
Find Riverhead Resources on Facebook and Twitter

The fact that Troy took time out to find attendee e-mail addresses and send out a marketing message to those who he was expecting to see at EntreFest! is awesome! It captured the spirit of the conference and reaffirmed to me the true spirit of entrepreneurialism- “”the drive to make obscene amounts of money!“” as Bob Clements put it during his Keynote address.

Of course, it’s only fair to include what I think could be improved upon in this strategy- I am a business consultant after all :). It would have been nice if Troy had used my first name in his correspondence with me and personalized it a bit more in the message body. Something like, “Hi Rob, I saw you’re coming to EntreFest! and that you have an online community for entrepreneurs. I hope that you take some time out during the networking breaks to come visit my booth, as I would like to hear more about how you help small business owners via MyEntre.Net.”

A appeal structured like this would have been much more inviting, while simultaneously providing Troy an opportunity to sell his products/services. As he wrote it, his free book was designed to be the incentive to visit his booth, however most people are much more receptive to an open invitation to come talk about what they are passionate about.

Hats off to Troy for taking the initiative to position himself for success at the EntreFest! conference. He exemplified the spirit of the conference and I hope he was able to make some sales and new business partnerships as a result of his attendance. For some other ideas on steps to take to position yourself for success prior to attending a conference, read Chris Brogan’s 27 things to do before a conference blog article.  What steps did you take to prepare for this year’s EntreFest! small business owner conference?

Even after EntreFest! 2011, I received marketing e-mails- alas I’ll save that for another blog, The Spirit of EntreFest- Part Two.

EntreFest – Recap Promo 2011 from Andrew B. Clark on Vimeo.

Rob Williams is a Business Analyst for the University of Northern Iowa

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