I know, I know. Conferences are expensive. It can be next to impossible to get buy-in from upper management. You can't be offline for days on end. Traveling can be a pain. All of these excuses are legit. But, attending a conference in your industry can be one of the best things you do for your career all year. Who can say no to that?! Here are 6 reasons you should attend a conference this year (call your travel agent today)!
- Networking opportunities. I know people say this all the time, but it's true. While we exist in a seemingly virtual world, there is nothing like meeting people in real life. Where else do you get a chance to be holed up for days with like-minded people? You get to meet new people in your industry, thereby expanding your network, share similar stories and, hopefully, find solutions to universal problems.
- Increased focus. Being out of the office is most likely one of your argumentsagainst conferences, but it can also be an argument for. When you are in a new space, away from all the noise of everyday life, with people who are as anxious to learn as you are, you pay more attention. You drink the Kool-Aid. You get excited about bringing this newfound knowledge back to work.
- Exhibit hall. Not every attendee takes advantage of the exhibit hall when at a conference, for fear of the sales pitch. But, vendors are relevant to the conference subject matter and most likely have a good sense of the business climate. Discovering new and innovative tools in the market help you stay competitive in a fast-paced industry.
- They are fun. I would be remiss if I didn't mention the fun. I'm not going to lie — every conference I have attended has had some pretty awesome entertainment. From happy hours to concerts, you can work hard during the day and play hard at night.
- Investment. The person who gets the most out of a conference is you. So, invest in yourself. Take what you've learned and use it in your everyday activities. Improve yourself, your career and your company. It's worth it.
- Share. To elaborate on #2, after the conference is over, you get to bring back all that valuable knowledge to your team members. Having that extra responsibility gives you extra motivation to be present and engage in the conference so your entire team can benefit.
These days, there are so many great ways to learn and improve your skills (books, blogs, podcasts, webinars). But, in-person conferences offer a unique venue for learning and networking you can’t get elsewhere. A new space can spark ideas you wouldn’t necessarily have at the office, will help you curate new methodologies and improve current tactics.
We have put together a list of digital marketing conferences you should consider in 2016. Be sure to check out the ones we’re attending!