How To Navigate A Con Professionally

How To Navigate A Con Professionally

 

We can all breathe a sigh of relief as 2020 was undeniably a wild year, and though famous gaming conventions such as PAX, E3, and Gamescom have gone on a physical hiatus, they’re slated to make a triumphant return over the next year. Whether an aspiring dev, entrepreneur, or content creator, as an industry professional these conventions can be a huge boon for success. So how do you make the most of this? 

 

 

Request To Be Part Of The Email List 

Most conventions actually have mailing lists to make preparations for the convention more efficient. Being on the media/content creator mailing list, developers will flood your inbox with information regarding their game and whether you’d like to request a meeting, interview, or demo. Now the sheer magnitude of emails you’ll receive will get absolutely annoying after a short amount of time, but the benefit is invaluable. If you stay on top of them, you’ll be able to zero in on the opportunities you’re interested in and secure a meeting with those companies before the convention even begins! Scouring the convention floor for the companies you might be interested in, then hoping they have time to meet with you is an option if you can’t get on a mailing list but is remarkably less efficient as the show floor is normally HUGE. 

 

 

Network with Both Inside and Outside Of Your Circles 

Networking is a big one. It’s what you’re there for right? To meet companies, make connections, and start conversations that will advance your career. This isn’t something I would normally go over except a major part of networking is nearly always overlooked: internal networking. Don’t underestimate the importance of showing yourself, galvanizing relations, and making new friends amongst compatriots in your field. The benefits of making good relations amongst others in your industry circle, whether dev or creator, are immeasurable, from introducing opportunities because a friend mentioned your name, to creating content collaboration chances, to even spreading and promoting your brand to those who might not have known. Not to mention, making friends will always make the entire experience more than just a chore but also fun, bringing out the best in you when you meet the company that matters most. 

 

 

Business Cards 

These are a must. You will meet so many companies, peers, and people interested in your product it’d be impossible to remember them all! During the chaos of it all we won’t have time to reach out to, research, or remind every brand we meet, nor will anyone else. That’s why business cards are so important. It’s not until after it’s all over that the correspondence begins, and you want to make sure others remember who you are. Make sure your business cards represent your brand well, as they are one of the first visual displays of what you have to offer, and it’s always good to be memorable. Have fun with them,don’t be afraid to give them out, and always always always have some on you. You never know where you’ll run into someone. Don’t know how to make one? Don’t worry, there are tons of sites that walk you through the entire process so even your first ever cards look pristine! 

 
Stay Professional In Any Situation 

One of the biggest parts of convention weekends are the lavish afterparties many companies organize. From dinner and drinks to concerts in night clubs, these hootenannies are a much-needed release from the stress of the day navigating the convention floor. Many times, these are actually where a lot of the business gets done! You can bump into anyone from a top executive, to the biggest names in content creation at these events, and you never know when opportunity arises (always have those cards). Many times, all you need to get a foot in the door is a good conversation with someone at the right situation, and lavish shindigs are no exception. I’ve also seen the inverse happen quite often: you never know when someone is watching. The way we carry ourselves reflects directly on how we may represent a company. Soiree style gatherings can be riddled with drama, confrontation, and over exuberance. Sometimes it’s unavoidable. Make sure to deal with any situation in a manner that represents you as brand professional and company marketable. Now I’m not telling you to not have fun, that’s part of the experience. Just make sure to keep your head about you. 

 

  img @Elena_Strikes

Be Genuine and Truthful 

We all have the tendency to talk ourselves up, which can be a great thing, but make sure to use moderation. Overstating your own analytics or pretending to be into a style of game or opportunity that really doesn’t interest you, can actually backfire! Companies are looking for the right candidate to collaborate with, and that doesn’t always mean the biggest. Each company has a specific target they’re looking to work with and representing yourself truthfully will yield the best results for opportunities and the subsequent product. Remember, the industry is smaller than you think and being disingenuous is something that people will remember and tell those they know. When you and a company see eye-to-eye on your expectations and ideals then the relationship becomes a joy to have and keep. In the end you’re looking for the right people to collaborate with just as much as the companies are, and when you find the right ones you’ll produce your best work

 

Article by Tachyon


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