Getting the Most out of Conferences

Welcome to episode 394 of Hit the Mic with The Stacey Harris.

Hello, hello. Episode 394 kicking off right now. I want to talk about what happens when you are interrupted, your patterns are interrupted. It can be really frustrating to stay consistent with content on social when you are traveling or you have something come up in your life, and this is something we’ve talked about in the past, but it has come up a lot for me in this first part of the year because we’ve got some family travel that we did, I was at Traffic and Conversion Digital Marketer’s event in February. Right now as you’re listening to this, assuming that you listen to it immediately, I’m just assuming, I’m in San Diego again for Todd Herman’s 90 Day Year live event and a mastermind while I was here. We’ve got some more family travel coming up, and then some larger stuff that’s happening this summer.

It’s a lot. It’s a lot. I’ve got some more work travel in July. Like it’s a lot, and it can be overwhelming to figure out how you’re going to stay consistent with your content when you’re not in the office in your sort of natural habitat, in your everyday average, normal routine. It can be frustrating, and so I wanted to talk about that.

Plan ahead, and be flexible

When you know you’re going to have time off in advance, you prepare for it. So I got content ready. I didn’t record this last night. It was ready to go. The same is true of the social media content that’s going out right now. Guess what, guys? Most of it is scheduled. With that said though, some of it can’t be scheduled, so like am I not going to go live at all this week? Well, no. I’m probably going to go live, but those lives are going to be a little bit different. They’ll likely be from my phone versus my computer. They’ll likely be shorter. They’ll likely be more focused on sort of what’s happening around me, what I’m learning at the event, people I’m meeting, something like that. The same is true with my stories.

On the flip side of that though, it may mean that those things do stop, and that’s okay too. For example, we’ve got some family travel scheduled in the next couple of months. We did some family travel earlier this year, and guess what? There weren’t stories or Facebook Lives when I did that because I was in family time. I was in a different mode than I am when I’m creating content, and that’s okay too. So planning doesn’t necessarily mean just getting content ready because everything has to operate as business as usual. Everything doesn’t have to operate as business as usual. Everything has to operate however you want it to operate.

I will say when I know I’m not going to be doing Facebook Lives or I’m not going to be on Instagram Stories, I do supplement that with some other content. So I do make sure that there is either prerecorded video or some text status updates or some photo video or photo status updates that do go out, so there’s something happening on the page, and I can stay engaged with you guys, but that doesn’t necessarily, again, mean I have to do it.

So what happens if someone needs to be responded to on social?

How do you handle that? Well, in most cases, like this is a business trip, I will be on my device. I will be checking in on my stuff here and there. Now, I probably won’t necessarily be responding to emails. The out-of-office thing will go on promptly Monday morning, but if you are completely unplugging from social as well, then maybe it’s worth having someone else take a look. So if you have a VA or you have an intern or you have someone in your support staff that can check in on those things, let them know, “Hey, I need you to put an extra eye on the social stuff just in case there’s a question or something happens or there are responses to whatever we have scheduled.” Let them know. Figure that out. Find that person.

If you don’t have one of those people in your life right now, then maybe look at partnering with a biz bestie. So this is something that you can do with a friend and say, “Hey, I know you have X, Y, Z coming up. I have X, Y, Z happening. Would it be cool if we sort of kept an eye on each other’s social while the other one is gone?” Give them a brief idea of sort of how to respond, make sure they’re liking comments if they need to, but it just allows there to be someone to sort of raise the flag if there is something you have to respond to. This is something that we do when we do family stuff and I’m not paying attention to social. My team knows they can text me and say, “Hey, we need to respond to this. What’s going on?”

And if you do have a team in place, make sure that they have a clear understanding of how as much stuff as possible is handled so that there doesn’t need to necessarily be that phone call where it says, “Hey, this happened. What do we do?” And that’s just about having a well-trained team. That’s just about having a really solid understanding of your brand’s voice and how your brand responds to certain events. But having that sort of security in place will help you relax a little more and unplug a little more and enjoy if it’s vacation or if it’s a mastermind or a conference. Be in it. Get what you wanted to get when you spent the money to go to that conference.

At Traffic and Conversion I met so many people who were trying to work while they were at the conference, and Traffic and Conversion Summit, if you’ve never been, is intense. You go from 8:30 in the morning until 5:30 or 6:00 in sessions. There’s no lunch break. There’s about 30 minutes-ish between each major session, but even during those breaks there’s sort of small mini-sessions happening or networking. There’s always something happening. There’s literally something happening every minute of the day, and then you end the day at say 5:30, six o’clock, and then a party or a networking thing starts in the evening. So you’re going from 8:00 in the morning until, if you’re me, midnight, 1:00 a.m. Realistically, you should be done by like 11:00, but sometimes these things go later. There’s no time to be trying to work, and when I’m in session, I’m learning. I’m figuring out what’s going on, what’s coming, what’s next, so that I can teach you guys, so that I can serve you, and so that I can grow my business and so that I can grow my clients’ businesses.

I want to be all in on that. I saw so many people working, and that’s really what called me to do this episode. I want you to take this as permission to step back, to go to a conference and actually be present, be there. That’s okay. That’s important. Your clients will understand. Just let them know, “Hey, I’m going to be out of the office. Here’s who you’ll reach on my team. Hey, I’m going to be out of the office. Here’s the best number to call with an emergency,” and be really clear. Honestly, I have like … I don’t have any clients who actually have like an emergency red alert, because there’s somebody who can handle everything. Also, I have a really good understanding of the fact that my clients actually understand what emergencies are. That’s an important thing there. So figure out what works for you, and then do it, so that you can be 100% in it at these events for the networking, for the lessons, for the community, for the whatever it is that you need as you’re going into these events. That is absolutely critical. Okay?

Super short one this week. Again, I’m at a conference, but I wanted to make you guys aware of this, and I wanted to have this conversation. So I would love to hear from you. Head on over to Instagram and send me a message and let me know what you got from the episode. Instagram.com/TheStaceyHarris, and of course, even better, I’d love to see you join us backstage, HitTheMicBackstage.com. Very cool thing about backstage is you can join anytime you’d like, even when I’m out of town, and I am in that community this week answering questions and saying hi as there’s stuff popping up because I love you guys.

Next week, actually Sunday, the brand new training shows up in Hit the Mic Backstage. We’re talking about doing your quarterly review because, guess what, guys? Q1 in the books. Time to evaluate and see what we’re going to do in Q2. I know what I’m going to do in Q2. Do you? Do you know? Do you know how Q1 went? These are questions you should be able to say yes to. If they’re not, join us backstage. It’s where you need to be. I will see you very soon. I love that you listen to this show, and I love that you spent some time with me today, so have a really fantastically, wonderfully awesome day.

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