Network Beyond Your Comfort Zone

Network Beyond Your Comfort Zone

How many digital marketing events have you attended?

If you’re like me, chances are it’s quite a few. And it can’t be beat for “building personal brand”, which is the modern way of saying “meeting people”. It’s great to see fellow digital marketers, share news, understand the latest trends from the best in the business. And maybe there are even a few potential customers hanging around.

Which brings me to this: your customers are not typically at your industry event. They are at every other event. And when you talk to representatives of a possible customer at a digital marketing event, does it not seems sometimes their eyes glaze over? For them, there is a surfeit of you–at this event.

So it makes sense to get outside that comfort zone. Go to events you don’t really connect to through digital marketing. There are a few advantages.

First, their eyes don’t glaze over. In fact, you may be amazed to find out that even very smart people in other industries know little to nothing at all about digital marketing–especially digital analytics. As a subject matter, it can come across as very cutting edge and engaging.

Second, you learn about what real businesses are doing. At a recent non-techie event I learned that watershed preservation efforts on the Pascagoula River in Mississippi are being hamstrung by no-regulation fanatics. And that south of I-10, even Mississippi has cultural diversity (that would be along the Gulf Coast).

Third–you may find a customer. Keep it conversational, exchange cards, learn from each other. When you’re offering information about subjects they know little of, there’s less of the “selling” tension that kills many conversations. Keep in mind you will probably be the only digital analytics “expert” in the room.

Going to non-industry events may not work for everyone. But I find it expands my base of knowledge and makes me a stronger marketer.


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