Top 5 Tips For First-Time Dreamforce Attendees

start here stampDreamforce just gets bigger and better every year, welcoming a new cohort of conference newbies to San Francisco each fall. It can be an overwhelming experience even for seasoned Dreamforce veterans, but especially so for those who are attending for the first time.

To avoid wandering around the Moscone Center aimlessly for four days straight, it’s important for first-timers to set a few general guidelines and objectives for themselves.

Whether you’re a first-timer yourself or you’re searching for some tips to send to a newbie on your team, we hope they make your Dreamforce experience more enjoyable, rewarding and fun!

1. Be prepared, practical and patient

Sounds like common sense, but you’d be surprised how many people flounder because they forget to follow the 3 Ps: be prepared, practical and patient.

Prepared: Being prepared means you know where you’re supposed to be and when — you don’t want leave your colleagues stranded on booth duty if you were supposed to relieve them hours ago.

Practical: Travel light and comfortable. Avoid carrying a heavy laptop bag around with you all day (stick to a tablet or smartphone), and make sure to wear layers and comfortable shoes. You may not be able to return to your hotel room from the early morning on until late at night, so you’ll have to put up with your wardrobe choices all day and night.

Photo credit: Jon Mountjoy

Photo credit: Jon Mountjoy

Patient: With more than 120,000 people camping out on just a few city blocks for four days straight, things are bound to get a little hectic. No matter how well you prepare, there will inevitably be long lines, big crowds and unanticipated waits. Don’t expect to be able to get a cab, either — your practical shoes will come in very handy when you opt to walk everywhere.

You’ll need: A hard copy of your schedule, colleagues’ contact information and any other important information in case your smartphone or tablet dies (on that note, bring an extra battery pack or charger).

2. Find your niche

Pretty much everything at Dreamforce, including the sessions, prizes and even the parties, is tailored toward specific types of people — marketers, salespeople, developers, etc. — so it’s important to figure out which niche you belong to early on. To get the most out of the conference, make sure you’re going to the right events. Not sure? Ask!

You’ll need: To establish meeting spots outside the Moscone Center (but not too far away). Try Yerba Buena Gardens for a change of scenery.

3. Build relationships

Once you’ve found your niche and you start meeting people who are like you, take the opportunity to build relationships with them that will continue well after Dreamforce is over. Whether it’s at your booth, following a session or during an event, introduce yourself to everyone around you and take a few moments getting to know them.

Don’t overlook opportunities to strengthen your relationships with your colleagues, either — you’ll be spending every waking moment together.

You’ll need: Lots of business cards and breath mints — chances are you’ll be drinking way too much coffee.

4. Have fun (but not too much fun)

Dreamforce isn’t just any old, boring conference — there are also dozens of official and unofficial events, parties and gatherings taking place throughout the week. Some are invitation-only, while others just require a Dreamforce pass.

Check out as many as you can, but remember: San Francisco isn’t Las Vegas. What happens at Dreamforce doesn’t really stay at Dreamforce, so don’t embarrass yourself in front of your colleagues, customers or peers.

You’ll need: DoubleDutch’s Partyforce app.

5. Earn VIP status: Advocate for your favorite company or app

Companies invest a ton of cash and resources into Dreamforce, so they really appreciate all the help they can get in standing out and making the most of their investment in the conference. Identify a few vendors that you’d like to meet with, map out their locations and visit their booths early in the week to ask if they need any support from advocates such as yourself.

They might put you to work meeting with a few prospects, spreading the word about their sessions, events or contests, or visiting Influitive’s booth to perform additional acts of advocacy.

You’ll need: Visit Influitive’s booth in Moscone North to get rewarded for your advocacy at Dreamforce!

Are you a part of Dreamforce’s ‘Most Wanted’?

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We’re paying handsome rewards for advocacy bounty hunters at Dreamforce! We need you to bring us savvy marketers so that we can help them round up their advocates with a formal advocate marketing program. Come to Influitive’s booth #N2104 with one of our ‘Most Wanted’ marketers and we’ll give you a cash bounty ($50 to the bounty hunter and $50 to the captured marketer).

Learn more!

One Response to Top 5 Tips For First-Time Dreamforce Attendees

  1. […] why we’ve compiled a list of the most customer-centric Dreamforce 2015 sessions for marketers who are obsessed with creating the best customer experience […]

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