Power Meetings Playbook Part 2: Five Tips to Crush Your Supplier Meetings
In the first installment of this ongoing, multipart series, we gave an introduction to Power Meetings—the exclusive one-on-one supplier meetings that bring together promotional products industry professionals for unprecedented business and networking opportunities. If you missed it, check it out here.
Now that you know what Power Meetings are, we're ready to get into some more advanced territory. This time around, we're running through five tips for getting the most out of your supplier meetings. Even if you've been to a Power Meeting before, there may still be some helpful advice for your next meeting, so make sure you stick around for the full list.
Here's the list—complete with advice from past attendees. Let us know if we missed anything!
1. Include your clients in your opportunity
As you prepare to be out of the office to attend this event, let your clients know that you are going to be speaking with top suppliers about their upcoming projects and if there is anything that they would like for you to look for. This extra gesture not only shows your clients that they are top of mind for you, but also will open doors to new projects that your client isn’t currently using you for or hasn't even thought about yet. (Extra bonus for being proactive!) Develop a short questionnaire for your top clients to complete to best prepare you for your meetings and to collect information you might not have had in the past.
"It is an intense couple of days with little time for rest," said Patti Bohne, president of Olive Promotions. "Before you attend, review your top 25 to 50 clients and think about their needs, what they have ordered in the past and what would wow them. Keep the list in front of you while you are attending the Power Meeting."
2. Have a plan (but also an open mind)
It's smart to head into the event with a clear agenda and plan for each of your supplier meetings, but it also pays to be receptive and open-minded. You may have a set list of suppliers you're most excited to meet with, but you may also discover new ones who can offer solutions you haven't thought of yet—remember, each supplier has researched and prepared for each individual distributor to offer the best possible service and make the most of those 20 minutes. That kind of one-on-one attention is invaluable.
"Suppliers are hosting distributors to come and learn about their company, the products and their services in an intimate setting," said Donna Tyser, national sales manager for Alight Promos. "Suppliers are focused on just them for 20 minutes, and you will usually get told about best sellers, reliable favorites, ideas for expanding their promotional offerings, case studies, and more, all tailored to their company. If you attend with the right mindset and focus, both distributors and suppliers will walk away with a stronger customer base."
3. Pay attention to details
Supplier meetings often yield tremendous opportunities for collaboration on future projects, but Power Meetings can also offer immediate benefits and solutions—if you're prepared. For example, many suppliers that you will be meeting with will create spec samples for projects you discuss with them, so it's a good idea to have on hand top client logos in high resolution and digitized formats. Bohne recommended a jump drive for immediate access.
"When you get back to your hotel at night and you are reviewing the day, put the jump drive in your computer and send off the logos asap," she said. "This way you don’t have to wait and remember to do it once you are back in the office."
4. Don’t forget your business cards
This seems pretty obvious, but it’s that one simple thing that many forget to pack. Not only will you be networking with top suppliers throughout the event, but you will also be meeting other top distributors as well.
5. Plan to network!
Power Meetings are carefully scheduled to provide you with every opportunity to network with the top leaders in the industry, so plan to attend every networking event—including breakfasts, lunches and dinners—to get the most out of your time away from the office, build upon existing relationships and create new ones.
Want to check out a Power Meeting and put these tips to use? Here's the list of upcoming meetings still open to distributors:
• May 21-24, 2018 - Deerfield Beach, Fla.
• Aug. 27-30, 2018 - Palm Springs, Calif.
• Oct. 8-11, 2018 - Scottsdale, Ariz.
If you're interested in attending, contact Mike Cooper or Renee Brueggeman via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Mike Cooper at 215-238-5434. For event information and testimonials, visit www.pmpowermeetings.com.