On June 25th We went to the business Expo. This is a once a year event put on by the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. It had 200 businesses that purchased a space there. One thing they did that I really liked is that they made the price very cheap so that even the smallest business could afford it and they limited each business to only 1 booth. Most were 10×10, about 50 were just a table around the outside and 5 were larger for the sponsors. I have been to many events where some large company buys up 10 booths to show off everything and drown out the competition. None of this was here.
To me this is one of the most fun things I get a chance to attend during the entire year. You get ideas of what other people are doing. You get to see what people think will be successful. You also get to see booths from distributors for many of the MLM’s, it lets you see which ones are popular beyond the internet.
The motto of the expo this year was “Stay Up in a Down Economy”.
The highlight of the expo was a free seminar they hosted. It was all about the new way of marketing, using relationships, the first speakers was Victoria Trafton from the Referral Institute of Arizona. She talked about how it is so important to build up relationships with your customers and get them to refer your business.
The second speaker was Raymond Lambert. He is an expert at using a website called linkedin. Here is his LinkedIn page. I have known about linkedin for a long time now I even created a profile about 6 months ago, but I never realized how big and important it is. After going to his event I would suggest that everyone create a linkedin page. It costs money to get the advanced features but it may be worth it so most people. He really made it hit home that this is a great way for you to build any business you are in, or to just promote yourself.
The last speaker was Dave Barnhart from Business Blogging Pros, here is his blog and his other blog. He has a business where he helps people unlock the power of blogging. Most of what he said is stuff that I already knew, but I only knew them because I am a blogger and a techie. After it was over I talked to him for a few minutes and he was very smart and knowledgeable. He suggested that I try Feedburner, and that I also try Typepad instead of WordPress because it has many more features. If you are looking for someone to help you blog you can call me for the basics, but if you really want the advanced stuff call Dave. (He lives only a few miles from my office, I think I will call him later and ask if he wants to market eachothers products)
As a direct result of this Expo I have already wrote over $1,500 in business and I have reminded many previous contacts about our company. I have upgraded my linked in page, and added more features to this blog. I also handed out over 100 business cards and collected about 100 so that I can call them this week. After the expo was over they had a great reception, free food and 2 hours of mingle time with about 400 other business owners.
All and all it was a great event, that I look forward to all year.