Find your business cards. Prepare your best networking smile. Grab a couple extra dollars (or a lot of extra dollars) for the craps table. And most importantly, start priming your liver. The 2017 Magento Imagine Conference is upon us, and Human Element is ready to hit the road. Aside from the frenzied excitement of spending a few days in Vegas learning about our favorite eCommerce platform and meeting people who share that world with us, we have a few tips for how to get the most out of your Imagine experience. Here are our top 10 must-dos for the 2017 Magento Imagine Conference:
10. Make a Plan for a No FOMO Experience
Whether you’re a Business Analyst, a Sales Rep, or you’re on a more Technical track, start making your plans now. There are a ton of cool things going on, including great General and Breakout Sessions, evening activities, and you’ll probably want to spend some time hanging out with your Magento friends at some point during the week. Fear of Missing Out is the worst. We’ve created a calendar* for each attending member of our team so we know what everyone would like to attend and when we’ll be stepping out of the conference to spend time with clients.
*Post-Launch Edit: I just discovered the Magento Imagine App. Use that. It’s pretty awesome for creating your own schedule. Here’s the Android version.
9. Grab Some Good Swag from the Vendors
Imagine sponsors take their swag responsibility seriously. Think T-Shirts, water bottles, carabiners, stuffed animals… I snagged a sweet Yeti coffee mug from Nexcess last year. (Look how that swag is paying off right now). You might even meet a vendor with a cool new product to improve your store, or meet a partner for a future Magento build. AND you’ll walk away with a bag full of goodies. It’s a win-win.
8. Tune in for the MageTalk Podcast
This year, three O.G. Magento Jedis will be broadcasting from the event for a few hours everyday. This is the first time they will be hosting the MageTalk Podcast at Imagine. I’m not totally sure what to expect, but I’m betting it will be both educational AND entertaining.
7. Share #MagentoImagine Nuggets on Social
You might miss a session or two, for whatever reason. Client commitments, meetings, hangovers – no one is judging. Catch up on all the highlights on social media with the #magentoimagine hashtag. And if you’re seeing something especially cool or learning a new, important thing, put it out there for the rest of us to enjoy! Share the #magentoimagine love! There’s no such thing as too many Tweets. Just ask 45.
6. Attend the Legendary Imagine Evening Event
This event on Tuesday night is always a blast. There will be great food and drinks, fire dancers and entertainment, a DJ, and always a small chance someone will fall in the pool. Definitely attend, but try not to be that guy. The one in the pool.
5. Grab New Friends and Try One Cool Vegas Thing
Last year, we took our clients from Pentair down to Fremont Street for some late-night zip-lining. We also did some more conventional Vegas stuff, like eating amazing dinners and gambling all our money away at the blackjack table. Really though, find some of your new buddies and experience a little bit of Vegas in the off hours. It’s worth it.
4. See Serena Williams’ Keynote Speech
Personally, I am so stoked to see Serena Williams speak. She has won 72 career singles titles, 23 doubles titles and two mixed doubles titles. This includes 39 Grand Slam titles – 23 singles titles, 14 doubles titles and two mixed doubles titles. She has competed at three Olympics and won four gold medals. When a reporter asked Williams whether she should be considered one of the greatest female athletes of all time, she had the perfect response: “I prefer the words ‘one of the greatest athletes of all time.'” I’m already inspired.
3. Meet with Your Favorite Partners (Duh.)
Magento Imagine is the perfect time to catch up with all your favorite partners. Like Human Element. Of course you should also weasel lunch out of your hosting provider, your ESP partner, and anyone else you work with routinely. Don’t worry – they want to hang out with you just like we do. Let us buy you a drink!
2. Check out the Human Element B2C Breakout Session on Wednesday
In case you didn’t get the memo, our Director of Project Management Andrea Evans, Sean Phaler of Pentair, and I will be presenting at our first Magento Imagine Breakout Session. Yes, it’s Wednesday at noon, but you should still try to stumble in if you haven’t totally burned yourself out by that point. Especially if you want to learn about all the gnarly pitfalls of taking your B2B sales strategy Direct. And of course, we’ll give you all the insight on how to avoid said pitfalls. Join us in Mouton 2 at Noon Wednesday. There will be gifs… Oh, will there ever be gifs.
1. Don’t just give out your card. Really connect.
Don’t get me wrong – you should totally bring your business cards. But everyone always comes home with pockets full of them that inevitably go in the washing machine. I’ve seen it a hundred times. So when you’re having a great conversation with someone, grab their card and shoot them a quick email with something memorable about the conversation. Later, you can try to connect on LinkedIn for a second connection that reinforces the meeting and gives you a real shot of being remembered. I think it’s fair to say we all live in the Magento world on a daily basis. It’s a treat to find people who share that world with us. Don’t miss the opportunity to build new relationships.
I am looking forward to seeing YOUR pretty face in Vegas on Sunday. Let’s do this.