The Art of Small Business Conference

Wow…. you are going to LOVE this.  Especially if you’ve been with us since we started way back in 2011.  As you may know, The Biz Club started off as a Business Book Club while I was on maternity leave.  We’ve shared our experiences and favourite business books over some great conversations.

I was so excited to learn about this amazing conference with seven amazing authors speaking!  It’s really a business book club’s dream come true.  We are passionate about business books because it’s an affordable way for entrepreneurs to learn insightful information from people who have ‘been there, done that’.  When you all come together and share your experiences related to what you’ve read, it makes them that much more powerful.

I have heard some great things about the other conferences in “The Art of…” series and I’m sure this one won’t fail to dissapoint with such an amazing lineup:

Conference Speakers:

1)      Michael E. Gerber, Small Business Guru & Author of the Mega-Bestseller, The E-Myth Revisited

2)      Chris Guillebeau, New York Times Bestselling Author of The $100 Startup & The Art of Non-Conformity

3)      JJ Ramberg, Host of MSNBC’s Your Business & Author of It’s Your Business

4)      John Jantsch, Small Business Expert & Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author of Duct Tape Marketing,

5)      Jonathan Fields, Award-Winning Author, Entrepreneur, & Founder of The Good Life Project

6)      Stephen Shapiro, Innovation Consultant, Speaker & Author of Personality Poker & Best Practices Are Stupid

7)      Mitch Joel, President of Twist Image & Bestselling Author of Six Pixels of Separation & Ctrl Alt Delete

 

Special Offer!

I was also lucky enough to get YOU a special offer!  The only catch is you need to network a bit to get it!  How fitting!  If you’re interested in going, enter a comment below and group yourselves into groups of 3 or more to save $100 per ticket!

Purchase from 1-2 tickets – save $50 per ticket with code TWITTERFAN

Purchase 3 or more tickets – save $100 per ticket with code TWITTERFAN

 

MORE INFORMATION:

The Art of Small Business, presented by Visa

Date: Monday October 21, 2013

Venue: Metro Toronto Convention Centre

Website: https://www.theartof.com/ or the direct link to event info is http://www.theartof.com/small-business-toronto-2013

Twitter: @TheArtOf

Hashtag: #TheArtOf

 

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Upcoming: Donate and Learn Social Media Workshop

 

godaddy ad 3Would you like to support a great cause and learn about search and social media marketing?

 

Join us, Tuesday May 28 at 6pm and learn from ABC News, Google Canada and Green Lotus search engine and social media marketing experts. The Donate & Learn Workshop is FREE with a donation to the YWCA Toronto Girls’ Center!

 

Leading Online Marketing Experts will speak about social media marketing, search engine marketing, SEO and finding a balance in your online marketing strategy. Speakers will provide industry best practices to better manage your online marketing strategy, improve brand awareness and your bottom line.

 

Register and make your donation on the Donate & Learn Website: http://greenlotus.ca/workshop 

Limited spots are available – Register now and reserve yours!

 

100% of donations will go to the YWCA Girl’s Center – a judgment free and supportive environment for young women to start building their futures. The YWCA Girls’ Center members are media savvy, fearless future leaders. Join us in supporting members of the Girls’ Center become exactly who they’d like to be!

 

Whether just starting to plan an online marketing strategy or deep into implementation; the Donate & Learn Workshop will provide the knowledge, strategies and networking opportunities needed to improve online marketing results, and take your businesses to the next level!

 

For further information visit YWCA Donate & Learn – Search and Social Media Workshop.

 

Workshop Sponsors: GoDaddy.com, Toronto Star’s NewInHomes.com, Epic Cruises and Big3 Video Marketing Agency.

 

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Five Kinds of In-Person Business Networking

There are so many different ways to participate in business networking.  Some methods of networking are more effective for certain types of people and businesses than others.  Below is a list of a few different types of business networking available in person. Our events tend to be a combination of one or more of these examples. Our networking meetings are usually quite casual, informal and everyone is welcome to attend.  Which types of events do you prefer based on your personality and business’ needs? Leave your comments below!

1.  Speed Networking

Speed Networking is what you would imagine it sounds like.  It’s speed dating for business.  Typically, you get about 1 minute to give your elevator pitch and then another minute to listen to the person in front of you.  Then the bell rings and you move to the seat next to you.  There are a few of these types of networking held throughout York Region and there are some people that love them and some that hate them.  I’m somewhere in the middle.

I think Speed Networking can be useful if it’s for a very targeted purpose or industry.  There is a group I’ve heard of (and unfortunately I don’t recall their name), that holds speed networking events to help people within the technology industry find business partners or potential suppliers.  The idea is that you are bringing together people with a specific need together.  For example, I may have a great idea for a new product, but need to find a mechanical engineer that would be interested in partnering with me.  In this case, 1 minute is all that you need.

Speed Networking can be useful for looking for specific types of partners or organizations you may want to work with, but is usually less beneficial for finding potential clients directly.

2. Chamber of Commerce Events

Every Chamber of Commerce has their own events as well.  They vary from social events to learning events.  Chamber events tend to have high attendance numbers since they already have such a large membership base.  Some drawbacks with such large events is that it can be intimidating for members that are shy to participate in an open networking format.  The benefit is that if you go often enough, you will start to see familiar faces and that may help you feel more comfortable.  Events are usually free for members, or they get a discounted rate.  Membership can sometimes be a bit outside the budget for a small business owner that is trying to market themselves and grow to the next level, but is usually beneficial to the more established and stable businesses.

3. Organized Networking Groups

Organized networking groups like BNI, Le Tip and BCX are also very popular. These groups tend to have very structured and formal processes in place for networking and referrals.  The all operate slightly differently, but some examples of the features of these types of groups (and I’m generalizing) are:

  • you may be expected to produce a certain number of refferals each month
  • they may only allow one person per ‘category’ – exclusivity
  • meeting are predictable (Usually on the same day and time each week or month)
  • In some cases the same people always attend. (Benefit if you want to build relationships, drawback if you prefer to meet more people)
  • There maybe high costs to join (although some have proven systems that show if you commit to their system you will see greater benefits).

4. Forums and Learning Events

Networking can happen anywhere.  Most business organizations hold some sort of learning event (we will be holding several starting this fall) where business owners and professionals can not only learn something to help them run or grow their business, but they can also meet other business owners that share a similar interest.  This is a great way to network as you usually have more time to chat and get to know other small business owners that are attending..

5. Tradeshows

Tradeshows are another opportunity to network your business.  The decision you need to make is whether you want to be behind a booth or in front of it.  Depending on your business and budgetary constraints, you may not be able to afford buying a booth, so that decision may be simple.  However, if you’re not sure which would be best for you, here are a few things to consider.

Booth:

  • Useful if you have something people really want, and want to learn more about.
  • Easier to have discussions with interested people about your products or services
  • A visible presence may help to reinforce your brand recognition
  • You may be listed on the event’s website or program and/or have other advertising opportunities available to you.

Attendee:

  • You can choose who you want to speak to at the event and avoid the booths that don’t interest you.
  • It’s a bit more difficult to gain brand recognition on a one-on-one basis.
  • You have more opportunities to connect with the rest of the attendees.
  • You can leave early if you find the event isn’t suited to your needs (It’s a bit more difficult to pack up a booth three hours early.)

Happy Networking!

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